Johnson's Island POW Camp

Engraving of Johnson's Island POW Camp


How and why an island in Lake Erie became a POW camp for Confederate officers is the topic for Roy Nicholsí program to the Big Walnut Area Historical Society at 7:30, Tuesday, November 12, in the Myers Inn Museum Meeting Room. The program is free and open to the public.

Johnsonís Island is a 300 acre island in Ottawa county in Sandusky Bay near Marblehead. It is about 300 acres and almost a mile long and Ĺ mile wide. Known as Bullís

 Roy Nichols

Island after an early owner, E. W. Bull., it was sold to L. B. Johnson in 1852.

According to the Duff Papers in Ashland Library, the government leased 40 acres for Confederate Prisoners of War in 1861.

Nichols graduated from Ashland High School and got his B.A. from Gordon College in Massachusetts in 1967 and a M.A.T from Oberlin College in 1968. He taught history and American government in Midview High School in Grafton, Ohio, while he attended law classes and earned his law degree from Cleveland-Marshall Law School in 1972.

From 1972-75 Roy served as the Assistant Counsel for Ohio Secretary of State (in Elections division). From 1975 to 1979 he was Chief of the Corporations Division for Ohio Secretary of State. From 1979-1983 he served as Chief of Legal Services Division of Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (Legislative Liasion for DRC). From 1983-2007 he was in private law practice but taught classes at Columbus State and other local colleges.

Upon retirement he formed Nicholsworth Presentations and gives historical talks on a variety of subjects, is a Professional Storyteller and plays Santa. He is a member of Vaudvillities cast member (3 shows per year); Hanby House volunteer; Church choir; Silvertones Chorus; enjoys karaoke and ballroom dancing; Forever Young Theater Group (once per year); Gillie Payers (3 plays per year); Underground Railroad Study Group.

Roy is active in Faith Covenant Church, Blendon Senior Center, Westerville Senior Center, Gillie Rec Center, Storytellers of Central Ohio, 2 Civil War Round Table Groups; Ohio History Connection; Hanby House in Westerville; Delaware County Historical Society and the Griswold Center in Worthington.

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