The book to which those lines form an introduction is a peculiar one in many respects. It is a story, but it is a true story, and written years ago with little idea that it would ever come into this form. The writer has been induced, only recently, by the advice of friends and by his own feeling that such a production would be appreciated, to present what, at the time it was being made up, was merely a means of occupying a mind which had to contemplate, besides, only the horrors of a situation from which death would have been, and was to thousands, a happy relief.
The original diary in which these writings were made from day to day was destroyed by fire some years after the war, but its contents had been printed in a series of letters to the Jackson, (Mich.) Citizen, and to the editor and publisher of that journal thanks are now extended for the privilege of using his files for the preparation of this work. There has been little change in the entries in the diary, before presenting them here. In such cases the words which suggest themselves at the time are best -- they cannot be improved upon by substitution at a later day.
This book is essentially different from any other that has been published concerning the "late war" or any of its incidents. Those who have had any such experience as the author will see its truthfulness at once, and to all other readers it is commended as a statement of actual things by one who experienced them to the fullest.
The annexed list of the Andersonville dead is from the rebel official records, is authentic, and will be found valuable in many pension cases and otherwise.