GRAPHIC Suicide?

Gary Morgan

First Sergeant
Forum Host
Aug 2, 2019
Not quite what you were asking, but at Andersonville, there were reportedly some guys who had enough and simply walked past the Dead Line, knowing that they would be shot and killed by the guards, and according to some diaries, there was at least one man who killed himself by hanging himself from his tent post (although the prison records say he died of dysentery; Robert Shellito, d. Aug. 25, 1864). If there was one suicide, I expect there were more that weren't recorded.


Sergeant Major
Aug 20, 2018
“I saw many wounded soldiers in the Wilderness who hung on to their rifles, and whose intention was clearly stamped on their pallid faces. I saw one man, both of whose legs were broken, lying on the ground with his cocked rifle by his side and his ramrod in his hand, and his eyes set on the front. I knew he meant to kill himself in case of fire—knew it as surely as though I could read his thoughts.”

Private Frank Wilkeson on the Wilderness, Recollections of a Private, pg. 67

I’m sure that suicide to relieve unspeakable suffering happened. When faced with a certain and painful death full of imaginable suffering, can one be blamed?