Collier-Thomas, Bettye, and V. P. Franklin, eds. Sisters in the Struggle: African American Women in the Civil Rights-Black Power Movement. New York: New York University Press, 2001.
Black women sacrificed as well. They contributed to the war effort in significant ways and formed the backbone of African-American patriotic activities. Clubwomen, many under the auspices of the National Association of Colored Women (NACW), led "liberty loan" campaigns, held rallies, and provided crucial material and emotional support for black troops. Women joined war service organizations such as the YWCA and the Red Cross as well as establishing their own groups, like the Women's Auxiliary of the New York 15th National Guard, to meet the specific needs of black soldiers.
free essay on African American Soldiers in the Civil War
Other blacks did so to show their loyalty to the south in hopes of getting freedom and keeping their families together. Slaves were ordered to work for the Confederate Army. There were thousands of slaves and free blacks that did manual labor for the Confederate army and some of those men escaped to the Union army. In the early years of the war, Union soldiers were returning runaway slaves to their masters, so some black men preferred to help the white men they knew, instead of the white men they did not know.
American History Essays: African Americans; Civil War Era
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African American Troops In The Civil War The ..
The service of black soldiers seemed unlikely at the beginning of the Civil War. White Northerners and Southerners alike were of the opinion that the conflict would be a war for white men only. In part, the resistance to black soldiers was the result of racist beliefs that African Americans were mentally and temperamentally unsuited for military service. Whites accepted this myth in spite of the participation of black men in the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812, and African Americans were turned away in both the Union and the Confederate ranks. However, resistance to black military service also stemmed from conceptions of citizenship in the nineteenth-century. At the time, Americans tended to see citizenship as not only bestowing rights, but also entailing duties—the foremost of which was military service. If black men were allowed to serve, they would have a strong argument for claiming citizenship rights, having borne the most onerous obligation of citizenship.
American Civil War Slavery Essay - iWriteEssays
Black leaders were keenly aware of this connection between citizenship and military service. Frederick Douglass famously told an audience in July 1863, ”Once let the black man get upon his person the brass letters U.S.; let him get an eagle on his button, and a musket on his shoulder, and bullets in his pocket, and there is no power on earth or under the earth which can deny that he has earned the right of citizenship in the United States” (Foner 1999, p. 536). This belief helps explain the later presence of Frederick Douglass and other African-American leaders at the forefront of Union recruitment efforts in free black communities. In addition to Douglass, prominent leaders such as Henry Highland Garnet, William Wells Brown, Martin R. Delany, and George T. Downing recruited literally thousands of young blacks for the Union army in the hope that their service would help transform the struggle into one that would free the slaves and bring African Americans equal rights in a transformed and redeemed republic.