Greatest Escape

A True American Civil War Adventure

Douglas Miller

The story of the largest prison break in US history, when more than 100 Yankee officers attempted a mass break-out from Libby, a special Civil War prison in the Confederate capitol of Richmond, Virginia, that was considered escape-proof.
Publication date:
June 2021
Publisher :
Stackpole Books
Illustration :
Format Available     Quantity Price
ISBN : 9781493051823

Dimensions : 152 X 229 mm
Not Yet Published. Available for PreOrder.


• All but forgotten today, the Libby prison escape was one of the most celebrated tales of adventure and bravery from the Civil War

The Greatest Escape: A True American Adventure tells the story of the largest prison breakout in US history. It took place during the Civil War, when more than 100 Yankee officers were put in Libby, a special prison considered escape-proof, in the Confederate capitol of Richmond, Virginia.

The majority of the men, obsessed with freedom, mapped out an elaborate escape plan and on one moonless night, 109 men dug their way to freedom. Freezing, starving, clad in rags, they still had to travel 40 miles to the Yankee lines and freedom. They were pursued by the whites in the area, but every black person they encountered was their friend. On many occasions, slaves risked their lives to help these Union men, and their journey was aided by a female-led Union spy network.

Since all the escapees were officers, they could all read and write. Over 50 of them kept journals and published riveting accounts of their adventures. This is the first book to weave together these contemporary accounts into a true-to-life narrative. Much like a Ken Burns documentary, the book uses the actual words of the prisoners uttered more than 150 years ago, as found in their diaries and journals.