Item #18690 U.S. Colored Troops Civil War Archive. Civil War US Colored Troops.

U.S. Colored Troops Civil War Archive

US Colored Troops, Civil War


U.S. Colored Troops Archive. After the US War Dept. issued General Order 143, allowing Black men to enlist in the Civil War, an estimated 185,000 free and enslaved African American soldiers joined the service. This greatly expanded the military's size and quieted discourse voiced by white soldiers that were angry to be fighting for a population who were exempt from the draft. This archive documents the participation of Black men in the Union army. This archive includes a roster of 56 Black men ordered away from their station at the Birney Barracks and to the Quartermaster's Dept. There is also a two-page payment voucher to Private Thomas Williams, an African-American soldier and discharge papers for Black soldiers in the 17th USCT, a congressional report granting a pension to the wife of 5th Regiment USCT Black soldier that died in duty, an autograph letter signed from a surgeon from the 33rd USCT, and a newspaper illustration titled, "Presentation of Colors to the Twentieth United States Colored Infantry, Colonel Bertram." Additionally, there are 3 documents from 1st Lieutenant George H Bean of the USCT 68th Regiment. These three documents consist of an October 1865 muster-out roll, a Return of Ordinance letter, and an 1865 Special Order from the 1st Division USCT.

The roster, which was printed on a War Department Adjutant General's Office Special Order form, lists 56 black men stationed at the Birney Barracks in Baltimore Maryland, belonging to the 28th, 30th, and 39th USCT. These men were to be transferred to the Quartermaster's Department, and "would be dropped from the rolls of their respective companies." The 28th, 30th, and 39th fought valiantly at the Siege of Petersburg and were involved with the recapture of Wilmington and Raleigh, North Carolina. The 28th USCT suffered extensive casualties between the Siege of Petersburg and the Battle of the Crater in summer 1864, losing nearly half of its soldiers. Despite their sacrifice in battle, many black troops during the Civil War were assigned to the Quartermaster's department, as there was a prevailing belief that they were not combat ready soldiers amongst the white military top brass. The document names the soldiers and the companies: "Henry Steele, Company 'B,' 30th U.S. Colored Troops. / Jacob Williams, Company 'B,' 30th U.S. Colored Troops" and goes on listing 54 African American soldiers with their assigned regiments. The payment voucher for discharged Private Thomas Williams totals at $72.53 for the period of February 28, 1865 through July 17th 1865, as he had 70.80 deducted for his clothing expenses. Williams is described as having a "light" complexion with dark eyes and curly hair, but was likely a black soldier as he belonged as an enlisted man in a segregated colored unit. The 1882 congressional report that accompanied bill H.R. 1290 of the 47th Congress, granted a a pension to "Modena Smith, widow of Robert Smith, late a private in Company B, Fifth Regiment United States Colored Troops." Private Smith had gotten sick and died from diarrhea at Camp Delaware, Ohio, a few weeks after his enlistment. Modena Smith was fortunately able to supersede the decision of the Pension Office, which rejected the claim that he contracted illness and died while on duty, by getting her appeal represented by the Committee on Invalid Pensions. The Committee recommended passage of the bill which would grant her her deceased husband's pension.

William B. Crandall, assistant surgeon with the 33rd U.S. Colored Troops War date Letter. He writes to Captain Norris Crossman of the 56th Volunteer Regiment on July 19th, 1864: “Sir, you will confer on me by sending the descriptive list of John L. Avery of your Company now on detached service under my orders. At the time of this letter in Jully 1964, the 33rd had duty on Folly and Morris Islands operating against Charleston, S. C., The 33rd United States Colored Troops came out of the 1st SC Volunteer Infantry, which formed before the United States government had given approval to recruit African American soldiers. The muster-out roll was a promotion of 1st Lieutenant George H. Bean to Captain of the 68th Regiment. Bean also authorizes an ordnance return, which was the return of military property, in the "second quarter of 1865." The return reads "This letter is the evidence that the property return referred to above has passed the administrative scrutiny of the Ordnance Bureau, and has there been found correct. It should be carefully preserved by the receiver." The Special Order was penned by James B. Ferguson and details Bean for "special duty at the Division Hospital and will report, without delay, to Surgeon A. A. Horton, Surgeon-in-Charge.". Comes with an Original etching 15" x 11." "Presentation of Colors to the Twentieth United States Colored Infantry, New York City, March 5th 1864." It shows a celebratory gathering of both white and Black onlookers, while the Union flag flies. An interesting archive that records the service of black troops in the military during and right after the Civil War. This archive in very good condition overall.


Item #18690

Price: $5,500.00