Opened in July 1862, the 35 1/2-acre site here in Brooklyn Township's University Heights served as the largest Civil War army camp of rendezvous, organization, and training in northeast Ohio. It was bordered by Hershel (now West 5th) and University (now West 7th) streets and Railway and Marquard avenues. A wartime high of 4,151 volunteers occupied the barracks here on December 5, 1862. Lieutenant William Dustin of the 19th Ohio Volunteer Artillery wrote, "It was a table land above the city and admirably suited to the use of a camp of instruction. It was as level as a floor and carpeted with grass. The capacious pine barracks held about 25 each of the battery's men." A total of 15,230 men trained here during the war—4.9 percent of the 310,646 enlistments in Ohio. More than 11,000 soldiers were discharged here at war's end. It closed in August 1865.
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A 320 bed pavilion-style hospital, designated as the United States General Hospital at Cleveland, occupied 3.76 acres on the southeast corner of W 5th Street and Jefferson Avenue. The hospital opened in December 1862; a total of 3,028 soldiers received care for gun shot wounds, illnesses, and diseases before it closed in July 1865, after the end of the Civil War. Some of the 91 deceased patients lie buried in the federally owned plots at Woodland Cemetery. All hospital and camp buildings were dismantled in September 1865, and the lumber and government equipment were sold at a public auction.