Category Archives: U.S. Colored Troops

October 12, 1865: More from Mississippi

As promised, the Cape Girardeau Weekly Argus of October 12, 1865 ran the second installment of “Baldface”s report of his travels in Mississippi. This one has some fascinating stuff: the destruction of the railroads, the value of black soldiers, class … Continue reading

Posted in Cotton, Education, Freedmen, Mississippi, U.S. Colored Troops, Vicksburg | Leave a comment

October 5, 1865: A visit to Mississippi

The Cape Girardeau Argus prints a letter from a local who is traveling down the river to Mississippi. It’s interesting how quickly battle sites became objects of tourist interest. The writer’s account of seeing Fort Pillow shows how strongly the … Continue reading

Posted in Cotton, Mississippi, Reconstruction, U.S. Colored Troops, Vicksburg | Leave a comment

July 24, 1865: Black and white in Charleston

Friction between black and white Union troops in Charleston. CHARLESTON, S.C., Saturday, July 15, 1865. The people of Charleston have just passed through a fiery ordeal. For two weeks past, until within the last three days, it has been dangerous … Continue reading

Posted in Charleston, South Carolina, U.S. Colored Troops | Leave a comment

February 10, 1865: Confederate congress takes up arming slaves

The 13th Amendment New York TImes: DOVER, Del., Thursday, Feb. 9. The Legislature yesterday rejected the proposed amendment to the Constitution, by a three-fourths vote in the Senate and a two-thirds vote in the House. Two bills, somewhat different, were … Continue reading

Posted in Black Confederates, U.S. Colored Troops | Leave a comment

February 8, 1865: Free the slaves to win the war

The 13th Amendment New York TImes: AUGUSTA, Me., Tuesday, Feb. 7. The Maine Legislature to-day ratified the Constitutional Amendment abolishing slavery, and a salute of one hundred guns was fired in honor of the event. ST. LOUIS, MO., Tuesday, Feb. … Continue reading

Posted in Black Confederates, Confederacy, Reconstruction, Slavery, U.S. Colored Troops | Leave a comment

December 31, 1864: Black troops will garrison Savannah

Halleck has already urged Sherman to make a gesture toward the well-being of escaped slaves to improve his PR with northern abolitionists. Now a related dispute arises; Halleck wants able-bodied former slaves who followed Sherman to continue to serve as … Continue reading

Posted in Contrabands, Georgia, Henry Halleck, John G. Foster, Savannah, Sherman's March, U.S. Colored Troops, Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

October 25, 1864: Sherman on black troops.

Sherman writes to the secretary of war about black troops. If black men fight, they’ll insist on equality. Sherman doesn’t think they’re ready for it. He also thinks that white men should all be fighting for their country, and then … Continue reading

Posted in Edwin M. Stanton, U.S. Colored Troops, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

August 9, 1864: Sorry, no black troops available

Sherman may not be enthusiastic about black soldiers, but he’d like to have some for garrison duty to relieve troops from Nashville for use at the front. Unfortunately, there aren’t any available. WASHINGTON, August 9, 1864. Major-General SHERMAN: Dispatch of … Continue reading

Posted in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S. Colored Troops, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

July 14, 1864: Sherman ready to cross, but don’t send any recruiters

Sherman’s daily report to Halleck includes a brief tirade about government hangers-on generally — “The Sanitary and Christian Commissions are enough to eradicate all traces of Christianity out of our minds” — but more specifically against sending recruiters. While the … Continue reading

Posted in Atlanta, Georgia, Henry Halleck, U.S. Colored Troops, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

April 5, 1864: Glee over the death of black soldiers

Sometimes the Richmond Daily Dispatch is hard to believe, even allowing for the different attitudes of the time. The negroes at the Olustee battle –A correspondent of the Savannah New, who was at the battle of Olustee, Florida, says of … Continue reading

Posted in Florida, Racism, U.S. Colored Troops | Leave a comment