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During the Revolutionary War, British forces imprisoned 11,000 captured Americans in foul, overcrowded, disease-infested, rotting ships with scarce food, water air, space or even sunlight.  This is one of the most tragic, but little-known, events in American history.   Three times as many Americans were allowed to die in the prisons and prison ships than were killed in the combat during the entire war. In the summer, they suffered from suffocation.  In the winter there was no heat, and few blankets or coats, and they froze to death or died of pneumonia. They had little food or water, so the prisoners had no resistance to the outbreaks of dysentery, typhoid fever, smallpox, yellow fever, and tuberculosis. It was one of the most horrible tragedies in American history.  But some important heroes came out of this, including spies and brave people who helped prisoners escape.  Today a monument honors these patriotic martyrs in Fort Greene Park.  Kate and Kathleen tell you all about this grim but important event in New York City military history.

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