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A Grand Army of Black Men : Letters from African-American Soldiers in the Union Army 1861-1865 - Edwin S. Redkey

A Grand Army of Black Men

Letters from African-American Soldiers in the Union Army 1861-1865

Hardcover Published: 10th March 2009
ISBN: 9780521434003
Number Of Pages: 328

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The Civil War stands vivid in the collective memory of the American public. There has always been a profound interest in the subject, and specifically the participation of black Americans in and reactions to the war and the war's outcome. Almost 200,000 African-American soldiers fought for the Union in the Civil War. Although most were illiterate ex-slaves, several thousand were well-educated, free black men from the northern states. The 176 letters in this collection were written by black soldiers in the Union army during the Civil War to black and abolitionist newspapers. They provide a unique expression of the black voice that was meant for a public forum. The letters tell of the men's experiences, their fears and their hopes. They describe in detail their army days - the excitement of combat and the drudgery of digging trenches. Some letters give vivid descriptions of battle; others protest against racism; still others call eloquently for civil rights. Many describe their conviction that they are fighting not only to free the slaves but to earn equal rights as citizens. These letters give an extraordinary picture of the war and also reveal the bright expectations, hopes, and ultimately the demands that black soldiers had for the future - for themselves and for their race. As first-person documents of the Civil War, the letters are strong statements of the American dream of justice and equality, and of the human spirit.

Industry Reviews

"...a significant addition to the small but growing body of literature speaking directly to the African Americans' Civil War." Richard M. Reid, Georgia Historical Quarterly "This volume is a substantial and important addition to the growing literature of African-American involvement in the Civil War." Richard Blackett, Journal of American History

List of abbreviations
Introduction: for freedom and equality
Black soldiers in white regiments
South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida
Virginia and North Carolina
The Gulf States
Occupation duty
For the rights of citizens
The struggle for equal pay
Racism in the army
The navy
War's end
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521434003
ISBN-10: 0521434009
Series: Cambridge Studies in American Literature & Culture
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 328
Published: 10th March 2009
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.24  x 2.24
Weight (kg): 0.65