Castle Lightning

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 :: Castle Lightning ::
Information about Castle Lightning in Richmond, VA during the Civil War.

corner 6th and Cary street. At various times, known as Western District Military Prison, Castle Booker, Castle Griswold, Castle Lightning. Apparently closed in 1863.

Written Accounts

Richmond Dispatch 4/24/1862; Lt. R. M. Booker has become one of the Assistant Provost Marshals of the city – he had previously been one of the officers in charge of the C.S. Military Prison on Main street
Richmond Dispatch 5/6/1862; 5/5 Elias Griswold replaces A. C. Godwin as Provost Marshal of Richmond. Godwin to Salisbury to replace Gibbs, who is taking a Battalion to the field. Griswold a lawyer from Maryland Eastern Shore - other details on Elias Griswold
Richmond Dispatch 6/6/1862; Jas. Summerfield in Asst. PM guard house, 6th & Cary. To be tried for bounty jumping. Member of Letcher & Deas Arty., among others.
Richmond Dispatch 6/25/1862; Georgian confined in the “guard house of the Western District, corner of 6th and Cary,” shot and killed while trying to escape
Richmond Enquirer 6/25/1862; man makes a repeated escape from the C. S. Prison at the corner of 6th and Cary Streets (Castle Booker/Castle Lightning)
Richmond Enquirer 6/25/1862; man shot and killed while attempting to escape from the C. S. Prison at the corner of 6th and Cary Streets (Castle Booker/Castle Lightning)
Richmond Dispatch 7/11/1862; full list of men confined at Castle Booker, corner 6th and Cary
Richmond Dispatch 8/6/1862; captured flag of the 1st Penn. Reserves is at Castle Griswold
Richmond Enquirer 8/6/1862; Great description of the Military District of Richmond - gives details on Winder's office, Castle Godwin, Castle "Grizzly" (Griswold) at the corner of 6th and Cary street
Richmond Enquirer 8/8/1862; list of deserters in Castle Griswold, corner of Cary & 6th
Richmond Dispatch 8/12/1862; Sgt. J. Walton, G7GA Battalion recently killed trying to escape from military prison. Not a deserter, but paperless & attempting to rejoin company
Richmond Dispatch 8/11/1862; List of prisoners in Castle Griswold
Richmond Enquirer 9/9/1862; 114 deserters confined in Castle Lightning
Richmond Dispatch 9/20/1862; counterfeiter escapes from Castle Booker
Richmond Dispatch 9/30/1862; enormous list from Winder of “negroes now confined in the Military Prisons, in Richmond” – where from, who owned by (if slave)
Richmond Dispatch 9/30/1862; Lt. Booker to send 100 CSA prisoners back to army today from the “prison under his charge.”
Richmond Dispatch 10/15/1862; member of the Richmond Blues put in Castle Booker for desertion
Richmond Dispatch 10/30/1862; All of Griswold’s detectives fired by Winder. Griswold’s office at corner 9th & Broad. Booker still Asst. Provost Marshal, western district.
Richmond Dispatch 10/31/1862; more on Winder’s dismissal of Griswold’s detectives
Richmond Dispatch 11/5/1862; “Military Station of the Western District” at corner 6th & Cary. Chas. Bernard, 15 La., prisoner there, tried escape from 3rd story – fell & injured, probably fatally.
Richmond Enquirer 11/5/1862; soldier tries to escape from Castle Lightning, and seriously injures himself in the process
Richmond Whig

11/5/1862; attempted escape from “the military jail at the corner of Sixth and Cary streets”

Richmond Dispatch 11/20/1862; Booker’s detectives raid restaurant near the Spotswood Hotel looking for booze. Violators locked up in “Freeland’s factory, corner 6th and Cary streets” awaiting trial.
Richmond Dispatch 12/3/1862; B. R. Minter, 18VaBn, killed at Castle Booker by sentinel (Wm. Phillips of President’s Guard)
Richmond Dispatch 12/3/1862; long paragraph on substitute/AWOL/robbery/Castle Booker scam
Richmond Dispatch 12/3/1862; Mayor’s Court items: as usual, many slave items; James A. Minor, NC soldier (see above), to Castle Booker for forgery; Emmanuel Olliberg (see yesterday) fined one dollar and released
Richmond Whig 12/3/1862; soldier shot by sentinel at the "Confederate prison, corner of Cary and 6th streets"
Richmond Dispatch 12/17/1862; Habeas Corpus case for 3 men confined in Castle Lightning
Richmond Enquirer 1/6/1863; 100 military prisoners from Castle Lightning returned to their regiments
Richmond Sentinel 4/22/1864; a deserter confined in the "soldier's home" on 7th and Cary streets (probably the former Castle Lightning) leaps out of a three story window, and escapes. He is recaptured and sent to Castle Thunder

Page last updated on 07/11/2008