In December 1864, Confederate authorities, fearing a raid on Andersonville by Sherman’s marching army, chose Thomasville as a safe temporary prison camp. Five thousand prisoners were brought and held here. Covering an area of only seven acres, the camp was defined by a ditch eight feet wide and twelve feet deep. Several hundred prisoners died of smallpox, typhoid fever, and diarrhea. They were buried at First Methodist Church and later at the Andersonville National Cemetery. Once the Federal army had taken Savannah, the Thomasville prison camp was closed, and the prisoners were sent back to Andersonville, arriving on December 24, 1864. Call the Thomasville Visitors Center for more information: (229) 228-7977.