A Story of Rebel Military Prisons (1879), based upon his lengthy confinement in the Confederate Andersonville prison camp during the American Civil War. In 1864, he was among dozens of men captured in a skirmish near Jonesville, Virginia, by Confederate cavalrymen under William E. Jones. McElroy was sent to a variety of camps before being assigned to Andersonville prison, where he remained for the rest of the war. After the war ended, McElroy was released from captivity and transported back to the North. He settled in Chicago and resumed the printer’s trade. He became a local reporter and newspaperman before moving to Toledo, Ohio, to become an editor of the Toledo Blade.