Category Archives: USCT

Jerilyn James Lee and Why the Civil War Still Matters

A pretty lady walked quietly in the cemetery where her grandparents and great-grandparents are buried. As she looked at the dates on the markers: I realized from the dates on my great grandmother’s grave that she was born in 1859 … Continue reading

Posted in Armies, Battlefields & Historic Places, Civil War Events, Common Soldier, Internet, Websites & Blogs, National Park Service, Preservation, Slavery, USCT | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Book Review: Searching for Black Confederates: The Civil War’s Most Persistent Myth

Kevin Levin, a historian, educator, and blogger based in Boston, has waded into this argument keyboard blazing. The first three chapters discuss in depth the definition of a “camp slave.” When a slave-owning family sent one of their men to … Continue reading

Posted in Antebellum South, Book Review, Books & Authors, Leadership--Confederate, Monuments, Photography, Primary Sources, Sesquicentennial, Slavery, USCT | Tagged , , , | 12 Comments

General Francis Barlow and The Letters He Destroyed on July 1, 1863

General Francis C. Barlow placed his division of the Union XI Corps on a rise of high ground, north of the town of Gettysburg. Without adequate reinforcements to anchor a defensive line, his exposed troops took the brunt of the … Continue reading

Posted in Leadership--Federal, Slavery, USCT | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Significant USCT Sites in the Eastern Theater: Virginia and Washington, DC

I have had a few inquiries about significant sites for the United States Colored Troops. Over the past several years, I have spoken about each of the five sites that I am writing about in this blog. I participated in … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, USCT | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Emerging Scholar Ashley Towle

As part of our partnership with the American Civil War Museum in Richmond and Civil War Monitor, we’re pleased to introduce the next of our “Emerging Scholars,” Ashley Towle. Ashley will be presenting her work at the museum’s Grand Opening May 4. A Tale … Continue reading

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Susie King Taylor: The First African American Army Nurse

“I was born under the slave law in Georgia, in 1848, and was brought up by my grandmother in Savannah.” So begin the memoirs of Civil War nurse Susie King Taylor, a most unusual woman in many ways. She was … Continue reading

Posted in Civilian, Medical, Slavery, USCT | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

African American Soldiers at Fort Gilmer

It was September 29, 1864. General Benjamin Butler’s Army of the James finally arose from its slumber, crossing the James and launching attacks against the outer Confederate fortifications around Richmond. The plan was to pierce the works and then to … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, USCT | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The First Contraband Combatants

“The scene on board the flag-ship was novel and thrilling. The thunder of the conflict drowned all other noises,” wrote historian John S. C. Abbott.[1] In one of the first Civil War histories, written while it happened, Abbott employed elegant … Continue reading

Posted in Navies, USCT | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Their Faces: Those Who Fought To Be Free – A Photographic Essay

When I have a lazy evening, I like to wander through the files of photographs on the Library of Congress website. The rain drummed outside, its even cadence echoing the drums of war from long past years. I decided to … Continue reading

Posted in Photography, USCT | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

The Newby Family Fights for Freedom

For more than two decades I’ve been fascinated with John Brown’s 1859 raid on Harpers Ferry. There’s so much intrigue to the story…it almost reads like a Hollywood script. More than the voluminous books, the artifacts and the sites associated … Continue reading

Posted in Slavery, USCT | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments