Oak Woods Cemetery

Chicago, Cook, Illinois, United States

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Number of Images

12177

Number of Headstone Records

15219

Number of Supporting Records

288

Description

Near the southwest corner of Oak Woods Cemetery in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood stands a 30-foot granite monument dedicated to the thousands of Confederate soldiers who died as prisoners of war at Camp Douglas. The monument marks a mass grave containing the remains of more than 4,000 Confederate prisoners, reinterred here from the grounds of the prison camp and the old Chicago City Cemetery. Another, smaller memorial commemorates the Union soldiers who died at the Camp Douglas, often from contagious diseases. These bodies had originally been buried at City Cemetery, which was closed and removed during expansion of Lincoln Park during the urban renewal following the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. They were exhumed and reinterred together in a mass grave, which came to be known as Confederate Mound, reputedly the largest mass grave in the Western Hemisphere. In response to the establishment of the confederate memorial, in 1896, Thomas D. Lowther, a pre-war resident of the South, erected near it an abolitionist monument. The abolition monument is a large black marble cenotaph to pre-war southerners, "unknown heroric men", "martyrs" who had opposed slavery and disunion. Near the beginning of the war, Lowthar had been forced to flee his home in Florida because of his anti-slavery and pro-Union stance. The cemetery now contains the graves of many prominent African Americans, including Chicago's first African American mayor Harold Washington. Journalist and anti-lynching activist Ida B. Wells, Olympic sports hero Jesse Owens, and gospel music pioneer Thomas A. Dorsey are buried in the cemetery.[ Famous nuclear physicist Enrico Fermi has his final resting place here. The cemetery also has a section for U.S. veterans of several wars, and a separately-maintained Jewish section.-Wikipedia
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Oak Woods Cemetery, Created by GraveScavenger, Chicago, Cook, Illinois, United States