Original Author: Chimborazo Hospital staff member
Created: July 30, 1863
Medium: Manuscript
Publisher: The Museum of the Confederacy

Release from hospital

In this official form dated July 30, 1863, a member of the surgical staff at Richmond's Chimborazo Hospital alerts a commander that one of his soldiers, Private F. Easley, is ready to return to active duty after having recuperated at the hospital. The commandant of the facility, Dr. James B. McCaw, appointed a Medical Examining Board to deal with patient furloughs and discharges, decisions that became increasingly difficult as the war dragged on and Confederate manpower grew scarcer. The War Department demanded "lists of men fit for duty," and in a January 1863 directive, McCaw insisted that army surgeons write a monthly report on the sick and wounded, as well as make a careful count of all the patients on the 10th, 20th, and 31st of each month. An 1892 article in the Southern Historical Society Papers claimed that "each Confederate soldier was, on an average, disabled for greater or lesser period, by wounds and sickness, about six times during the war."