The private and community cemeteries that contain NCA soldiers' and government lots, and Confederate cemeteries, do not always have staffed offices on site. When administrative information for the larger cemetery is available, it is provided below.
This cemetery is overseen by Baltimore National Cemetery.
Please contact the national cemetery for more information.
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Point Lookout Confederate Cemetery is located in Ridge, Maryland, approximately 80 miles south of Washington, D.C., at the mouth of the Potomac River. During the Civil War, the Union Army established a hospital on the site after General George McClellan's Peninsula Campaign failed to capture Richmond. Following the Battle of Gettysburg, the Union desperately needed a repository for Confederate soldiers in the region; as a consequence Point Lookout was transformed into a prison.
As in many Union prisons, the inmate population at Point Lookout ballooned as the war progressed. Between 1863 and 1865, more than 50,000 prisoners passed through the gates of Point Lookout. Many prisoners briefly stayed in Point Lookout before transferring to other prisons farther north. At various points over this period, the total population of Point Lookout reached 20,000 or more, double the intended capacity. Approximately 4,000 Confederates died at the site. Many of the inmates lived in tents instead of barracks, which contributed to the large number of deaths by exposure.
Confederate remains at Point Lookout are interred in a common grave. Originally, the soldiers were buried in two cemeteries near the prison camp. However, in 1870 the state of Maryland removed the remains to a more favorable site one-mile inland. After the transfer, the individual graves could not be identified; as a result the remains were buried in a common grave. In 1910, Maryland asked the federal government to assume care of the burial site and, toward that end, passed an act relinquishing all right, title, and interest in the cemetery.
Monuments and Memorials
Adjacent to the Confederate Soldiers and Sailors monument, there is a marble monument erected by the State of Maryland in 1876 dedicated to the Confederate dead. This monument is not owned by the National Cemetery Administration.
In 1910, when the federal government began maintenance of this property, an 80' tall granite obelisk was erected marking the common grave. The monument includes 12 bronze tablets inscribed with the names and command of 3,382 known Confederate soldiers and sailors, and 44 civilians. Four of these tablets are attached to the base of the monument, and eight are on the grass mound supporting the monument. The Van Amridge Granite Company created the monument.
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Cemetery policies are conspicuously posted and readily visible to the public.
Floral arrangements accompanying the casket or urn at the time of burial will be placed on the completed grave. Natural cut flowers may be placed on graves at any time of the year. They will be removed when they become unsightly or when it becomes necessary to facilitate cemetery operations such as mowing.
Artificial flowers and potted plants will be permitted on graves during periods when their presence will not interfere with grounds maintenance. As a general rule, artificial flowers and potted plants will be allowed on graves for a period extending 10 days before through 10 days after Easter Sunday and Memorial Day.
Christmas wreaths, grave blankets and other seasonal adornments may be placed on graves from Dec. 1 through Jan. 20. They may not be secured to headstones or markers.
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