BLACK CONFEDERATES

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Black Confederates - Why haven’t we heard more about them? National Park Service historian, Ed Bearrs, stated, “I don’t want to call it a conspiracy to ignore the role of Blacks both above and below the Mason-Dixon line, but it was definitely a tendency that began around 1910” Historian, Erwin L. Jordan, Jr., calls it a “cover-up” which started back in 1865. He writes, “During my research, I came across instances where Black men stated they were soldiers, but you can plainly see where ‘soldier’ is crossed out and ‘body servant’ inserted, or ‘teamster’ on pension applications.” Another black historian, Roland Young, says he is not surprised that blacks fought. He explains that “…some, if not most, Black southerners would support their country” and that by doing so they were “demonstrating it’s possible to hate the system of slavery and love one’s country.” This is the very same reaction that most African Americans showed during the American Revolution, where they fought for the colonies, even though the British offered them freedom if they fought for them.

It has been estimated that over 65,000 Southern blacks were in the Confederate ranks. Over 13,000 of these, “saw the elephant” also known as meeting the enemy in combat. These Black Confederates included both slave and free. The Confederate Congress did not approve blacks to be officially enlisted as soldiers (except as musicians), until late in the war. But in the ranks it was a different story. Many Confederate officers did not obey the mandates of politicians, they frequently enlisted blacks with the simple criteria, “Will you fight?” Historian Ervin Jordan, explains that “biracial units” were frequently organized “by local Confederate and State militia Commanders in response to immediate threats in the form of Union raids…”. Dr. Leonard Haynes, a African-American professor at Southern University, stated, “When you eliminate the black Confederate soldier, you’ve eliminated the history of the South.”

During the war in 1861, ex-slave Frederick Douglass observed, "There are at the present moment, many colored men in the Confederate Army doing duty not only as cooks, servants and laborers, but as real soldiers, having muskets on their shoulders and bullets in their pockets, ready to shoot down ... and do all that soldiers may do to destroy the Federal government."

As the war came to an end, the Confederacy took progressive measures to build back up it's army. The creation of the Confederate States Colored Troops, copied after the segregated northern colored troops, came too late to be successful. Had the Confederacy been successful, it would have created the world's largest armies (at the time) consisting of black soldiers, even larger than that of the North. This would have given the future of the Confederacy a vastly different appearance than what modern day racist or anti-Confederate liberals conjecture. Not only did Jefferson Davis envision black Confederate veterans receiving bounty lands for their service, there would have been no future for slavery after the goal of 300,000 armed black CSA veterans came home after the war.
 

Black Confederates paroled at Appomattox

Quartermaster Department of 3rd Corps (Ordinance Train.)
16 slaves (names unknown)
18th Georgia Battalion

Musicians
Joe Parkman Company A
George Waddell Company A
Henry Williams Company B
Louis Gardeen Company A

Cooks
James Polk Company B
Scipio Africanus Company B
William Read Company C
John Lery Company A
Quartermaster Department Gary’s Cavalry Brigade
James Barabsha Guard
Thomas Bowen Teamster
Burress Bowen Teamster
John Bowen Teamster
Jack Caldwell Teamster

Donaldsonville Artillery, Company B
H. Blum Cook
L. Leport Servant
Jno. Mamply Servant
Jno. Semple Servant
Bob ( Slave of Davod Bridges)
Jim (Slave of T. M. Dittrick)
Solomon Wright Blacksmith


                         Designed by Date last updated June 19, 2006