Annie Elinor Jones


An HMS American Cultures collaborative production

Soon after the Civil War began in early 1861, Annie Jones, an orphan in Cambridge, Massachusetts, traveled to Washington D.C to become a war nurse. Unfortunately, she was turned down due to her young age. Instead she became a Viviandiere, cooking and cleaning for the soldiers. She began her career as a "Daughter of the regiment," a ceremonial post in which young women traveled with military units as an unofficial mascot. These "daughters" sometimes cooked or mended clothing for the soldiers. Her frequent travels back and forth from Virginia and the army, made people suspicious of her. She was actually arrested numerous times, including one time by the Confederates.
Annie Jones was a women jailed during the Civil War with the charge of suspicion of being a spy for the Confederate States of America. She was involved with the dispute between Union generals George Armstrong Custer and H. Judson Kilpatrick that led to her arrest. In 1863 during the summer, the War Department incarcerated Jones in the Old Capitol Prison until November, when Secretary of War, Edwin M. Stanton ordered her free. She promised to stay out of Virginia, as part of her parole, but she was arrested again for attempting to get back into the state. Fernando Wood, New York's Mayor, soon to take a seat in the U.S. Congress, took a personal interest in Annie Jones. He persuaded President Lincoln and Secretary of War, Edwin Stanton, to free Annie Jones. Not long after that, July 1864, they set her free. In July 1864, she was set free and moved to Vicksburg, Mississippi. Annie Jones turned up officially only once after the war in Vicksburg, in May 1866. Her ultimate desire had been fulfilled, for the records indicate that her occupation was a nurse.


Online Sources:
Albright, Evan. "Annie Jones." CapeCodConfidential. 21 May 2009 <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anna_Elinor_Jones>.

"Annie Jones." Wikipedia. 21 May 2009 http://capecodconfidential.com/cccanniejones011230.shtml>.