1833 - 1864
Coming to America
Civilian to Soldier
Action on the Mississippi
Capture at Port Hudson
Documents / References
|Bernard was an Irish immigrant who came to America in the early 1850s. He left Ireland for England in 1847 and
made the trip to America in 1852. Settling in Taunton, Massachusetts, Bernard planned to earn money so his mother, wife and young son could join him. Though
his intentions were sincere, Bernard was unable to achieve them. It would be 1861 before he could finally finance his mother's passage. With the advent of
the Civil War, Bernard hatched a scheme to profit from the draft.
Bernard's attempts to accept conscription bounties while avoiding being mustered eventually found him under federal guard until being physically inducted as a member of the Massachusetts 41st Infantry. Capture by Conferderate forces at Port Hudson resulted in his internment at Camp Sumter located near Andersonville, Georgia in the spring of 1864.
Bernard survived the horrible conditions of the prison until August 10, 1864 when he died. This web site tells the story of Private Bernard McKnight.
Drogheda on the Boyne