Posted by James Briggs on December 27, 2001
In Reply to: Deadline posted by Cutter Sisson on December 27, 2001
: During the American Civil War large numbers of prisoners were often hard to contain especially since there were no formal jails to hold them. Therefore a line was drawn around the corralled prisoners who were in an open field. Soldiers with rifles were posted outside the line. Any prisoner that attempted to cross the line and escape were shot dead. Hence, deadline.
It first existed around the Andersonville prisoner of war camp in the USA at the time of their Civil War. It was a white line drawn around the camp; if any prisoner crossed the line they were shot dead.