Alexander Christie to his sister, Sarah, from Fort Snelling (Jan. 24, 1865)

The Barracks… are irregular rows of lumber buildings which with the parade ground cover 5 or 6 acres in extent, the whole surrounded by boards 14 or 15 ft long set up endways. All round the inside of the enclosure are sentinels pacing back & forth continually armed with breech–loading rifles or muskets with fixed bayonets. Round the walls, inside the buildings are ranged rows of bunks 3 stories high, capable of holding two upon each…. Each man has at least one blanket and by sleeping in twos and on the bare ticks they have plenty of clothing. I and my comrade lie on one and have only one over us.

Source: Minnesota Historical Society (

War and Rememberance African Americans In Minnesota The Home Front Minnesota's Soldiers Fort Snelling's Role