Corinth Contraband Camp

After the Union took control of Corinth in 1962, the town became a haven for thousands of runaway slaves who sought freedom and protection. Union General Grenville Dodge enlisted the escaped slaves as teamsters, cooks, laborers, and armed security guards, which led to the formation of the 1st Alabama Infantry Regiment of African Descent with about 1,000 men. Under the supervision of Chaplain James M. Alexander, the camp resembled a small town with a commissary, hospital, church, an American Missionary Association School, frame and log houses, and named streets. The camp allowed former slaves to create a life of their own, gain work and an education, and work toward the struggle for equality. Today, the site is a national park called the Corinth Contraband Camp. The park preserves and commemorates the events that change the lives of so many freedmen during and after the war. Bronze figures throughout the camp depict the lives of people who were considered “contraband” of war.


Cam Walker, “Corinth: The Story of a Contraband Camp,” Corinth Information Database, 1996,

“Corinth Contraband Camp,” National Park Service,

“Corinth, Mississippi: Attractions,” Corinth Area Convention and Visitor’s Bureau