Camp Nelson: In the Footsteps of Freedom

Established as a supply depot and hospital during the Civil War for the U.S. Army, Camp Nelson became a large recruitment and training center for African American soldiers (USCTs), and a refugee camp for their wives and children. Thousands of enslaved people escaped to this site with the hope of securing freedom and ultimately controlling their futures by aiding in the destruction of slavery.

Civil War soldiers pose in the yard of the wagon and harness shops at Camp Nelson

Explore Camp Nelson

Walk in the footsteps of soldiers to discover the role Camp Nelson played during the Civil War.

A group of formerly enslaved men who became soldiers at Camp Nelson

Discover the history of Camp Nelson

More than 10,000 formerly enslaved men became soldiers at Camp Nelson in 1864 and 1865.

Rows of Civil War wagons lined up in a field.

What is a National Monument?

Learn how a site becomes a National Monument.

Last updated: July 8, 2021

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

6614 Old Danville Road
Loop 2

Nicholasville , KY 40356


(859) 881-5716
The phone is usually answered Monday through Friday, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm. Voice messages are checked regularly.

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