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PBS show to highlight Georgia Southern at Camp Lawton tonight

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Posted: August 26, 2014 1:02 p.m.
Updated: August 26, 2014 12:59 p.m.
PBS show to highlight Georgia Southern at Camp Lawton tonight

Students and archeologist film an episode of "Time Team America" at Camp Lawton in Millen. At the close of the Civil War, Camp Lawton was believed to be the largest prison camp in the world.

In 2012, the PBS show "Time Team America" tracked the adventures of Georgia Southern University archeologists and students at Camp Lawton, a Civil War POW camp in Millen, as they uncovered buried secrets using the latest technology and decades of expertise. The episode will premiere tonight at 9 on PBS.

Host Justine Shapiro and a television crew from Oregon spent one week following the students' trowels as they dug, scraped and sifted through centuries of soil to recover precious clues to the past.

The show was filmed at Magnolia Springs State Park in Millen. The area was the site of Camp Lawton, which at the close of the Civil War was believed to be the largest prison camp in the world.

Camp Lawton was constructed in 1864 by the Confederate Army to replace Georgia's notorious Andersonville prison. Camp Lawton housed more than 10,000 Union prisoners and hundreds of Confederate soldiers. The camp was only occupied for six weeks before evacuations began in the middle of the night on Nov. 26, 1864, as the Union army approached during Sherman's March to the Sea.

Georgia Southern archaeologists believe that hasty exit may be the reason so many artifacts remained on the site. The state park was established in the 1930s, after the exact boundaries of the prison camp were no longer known.


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