To Kill and to Heal
More than 620,000 people died during the Civil War, more than 400,000 of them didn't die on the battlefield.
They died of disease.
The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield recently opened a new exhibit that showcases this.
This exhibit really puts a face on the Civil War. 2012 is the 150th anniversary of the war, and the exhibit at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum is one to see.
"This exhibit causes people to be pensive. It's not something that you're going to leave with a smile on your face, but it's something that you're going to leave with a smile on your face, but it's something that you're going to leave with better knowledge and better appreciation for what fighting men and women have gone through over the centuries," Deputy Director of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum David Blanchette said.
The exhibit is called to "Kill and to Heal."
"They can see some original firearms and original canons on display as well sabers and bayonets and that sort of thing," explains Blanchette.
The exhibit also focuses on "germ warfare."
Take for example this. A barn door that was actually used as a surgeons table during the war. Who knows how many people lost their life or how many lives were saved right here?
"Medical care for the time was very advanced, but by today's standards, very primitive. They didn't necessarily understand about the spreading of certain diseases or infections. As a result, you had about two soldiers dying from disease from every one that was killed by conventional means," Blanchette said.
Some of the biggest killers, believe it or not, measles and mumps. Also, the digestive disorder dysentery took many lives.
"Everyone should come see this exhibit, even though we have graphic images of injuries, we were very selective of the ones we put on exhibit so it would be appropriate for every member of the family," Blanchette said.
To Kill and to Heal is at the Abraham Lincoln Museum until December of 2013.