Illinois History Minutes

February 23 Illinois History Minute


Camp Butler, near Springfield, was the largest training facility for Union soldiers during the Civil War. And on this day, February 23rd, in 1862, it became a prisoner of war camp as well, with the arrival of two-thousand Confederate soldiers, captured at the Battle of Fort Donelson. But bad food, poor sanitation and disease took a deadly toll, and 700 prisoners died that summer. Today, a cemetery at the Camp Butler site contains the graves of soldiers from many wars, with a section reserved for Confederate soldiers.

On this day in 1967 Washington Week In Review premiered on the old National Educational Television service. WILL-TV picked up the show two years later, and still airs it today.