Valor for Union had many hues - USCT Memorial

scone

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#1
I was suppose to attend this ceremony but due to the ice and snow on the ground and it continueing to fall I decided not to. Hopefully it was a Grand event.

BTW: I know Bill Ratcliff :smile:

Valor for Union had many hues

By LEON ALLIGOOD - Staff Writer Tennessean


Rare statue to be reminder of Civil War price paid by soldiers who were black

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U.S. Colored Troops reenactor Bill Ratcliffe served as a model for the statue that will be dedicated today in the Nashville National Cemetery. JOHN PARTIPILO / STAFF

Rare statue to be reminder of Civil War price paid by soldiers who were black
About 26 years ago, Kwame Leo Lillard learned a lesson in Tennessee history he has never forgotten.​

The classroom was the Nashville National Cemetery off Gallatin Road. The "teachers" were about 2,000 headstones bearing the letters "USCT."

United States Colored Troops."I didn't know,'' said Lillard as he leaned forward, elbows on his cluttered desk in the small, second-story office of the African American Cultural Alliance off 9th Avenue North.

"I didn't know there were black men that fought in the Civil War. I was 40-something at the time. I considered myself half-way intelligent, but I didn't have a clue there was anything called the USCT."

Lillard was a quick study, however. Finding those graves on that spring day in 1979, deep in the rear section of the large cemetery, provided an epiphany. He resolved never to forget these men, most of whom fled from slavery only to die from wounds or disease in the conflict. He pledged their sacrifices would not be forgotten.

Today, Nashville officially will receive a gift from the African American Cultural Alliance that is testament to the concern of Lillard and hundreds of others. At 11 a.m., a bronze statue of an African-American Union infantryman will be unveiled at the cemetery, near the resting place of the black soldiers who wore blue.
The life size statue by Middle Tennessee native Roy Butler is one of only
a few memorials in the United States to pay homage to black Union soldiers and is believed to be one of two such tributes in the deep South. At the site of the Battle of Vicksburg in Mississippi, a statue was raised two years ago.

Nashville's 9-foot-tall soldier, fresh from the foundry, arrived Wednesday morning and was installed that afternoon. It will be officially unveiled today at a ceremony that will feature speeches and remarks by local, state and national dignitaries, including an undersecretary of veterans affairs.

"It's been a long time coming. We're about two years off our schedule, but when you're raising that kind of money, it takes time,'' said Lillard, who said the project cost about $56,000.

According to Bobby Lovett, longtime history professor at Tennessee State University, the statue is an important addition to the many memorials and historical plaques that interpret the state's rich involvement in the Civil War.

"All Tennesseans should know that we are the location of the second-largest number of Civil War battles in the nation. Only Virginia outranks Tennessee as a principal place of action," Lovett said

"It's also important that Tennesseans should know that Nashville and Tennessee provided a sizable percentage of the 179,000 African-American soldiers in the Union Army and about 20,000 that went into the Union Navy," he said. Lovett said about 60% of all black families in Tennessee had at least one relative who served in the Union Army of Tennessee, either as soldiers or civilian workers.

By the end of the war, Lovett said, black soldiers were about 20% of the one million soldiers fighting for the Union. According to the professor, most of those who fought in Tennessee were emancipated slaves, but slaves who fled to the Union-occupied parts of Middle Tennessee from Alabama and Mississippi joined their numbers.
They enrolled in units like Nashville's 17th USCT Infantry Regiment, which saw much action.

The black soldiers buried in the Nashville cemetery primarily came from Middle Tennessee battlefields such as Franklin, Johnsonville and Nashville, where 575 black troops were killed. While many died at the scene, others perished at field hospitals or succumbed to disease.

"The black soldier had it just as rough as anybody else,'' Lovett said.

As in most wars, there are unknown soldiers, men who died but whose identities remained a secret. There are about 400 such graves among the USCT in the Nashville cemetery.

A Nashville firefighter and Civil War re-enactor, Bill Radcliffe, served as the model for the statue, often posing for hours at a time at the sculptor's studio.

"I was asked to be the model. I did the best I could to represent the black men who we want to give honor and dignity to with the unveiling of this statue,'' said Radcliffe, a member of the 13th USCT Infantry Regiment, a Nashville-based re-enactor group.

Radcliffe, assigned to the fire department's Truck Company 29 in Inglewood, said he had approached today's unveiling with nervous anticipation.

"I haven't seen it. I don't want to see it until the cloth is pulled away. But I've got friends who have seen it and they say it looks good. They wouldn't lie,'' he said.
Lillard said making final preparations for the statue's arrival had been tedious and now that it is in place, he planned on enjoying today.

"This is going to set the record straight. When I was growing up, what a lot of people thought of when they thought of the Civil War and blacks was this,'' he said, holding a commemorative stamp featuring Hattie McDaniels, who played Mammy in the film Gone With the Wind.

"We want kids to come to this cemetery and see this statue and touch it. We purposely put it on a low pedestal so kids could touch it,'' he said.

"We want the lesson to be learned early."
 

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gary

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#2
Yep, many hues including yaller.

Joseph Pierce, Co. F, 14th CVI, of Chinese descent. Joined the charge to capture the Bliss Barn at Gettysburg. Who'd of thought that there was a yellow dude in blue at Gettysburg?
 

scone

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#3
Another of Chinese descent. in a texas unit that fought and was killed during the Battle of Franklin. and is buried in Carnton

Hopefully the event was canned because of the weather as i havent seen anything on the local news about it..
 

samgrant

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#4
Tis a pity Gen. Hood didn't use your excuse of 'ice and snow'.

Are you sure this statue is for a 'Colored' soldier of the Union?

I imagine it must be dwarfted by all the statues of the 'Colored' soldiers of the CSA!
 

william42

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#5
Great post Steve.

"All Tennesseans should know that we are the location of the second-largest number of Civil War battles in the nation. Only Virginia outranks Tennessee as a principal place of action," Lovett said
I didn't know this part before today. I figured Virginia would be first, but really didn't have a clue which state would come in second as far as the number of battles fought within its borders. Now that I think it about it, it makes sense. Thanks for the post.

Terry
 

william42

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Joseph Pierce, Co. F, 14th CVI, of Chinese descent. Joined the charge to capture the Bliss Barn at Gettysburg. Who'd of thought that there was a yellow dude in blue at Gettysburg?
Something else I learned today. Thanks Gary.

Terry
 

scone

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#7
william42 said:
Great post Steve.



I didn't know this part before today. I figured Virginia would be first, but really didn't have a clue which state would come in second as far as the number of battles fought within its borders. Now that I think it about it, it makes sense. Thanks for the post.

Terry
yep I dont recall the # diffrence in the two but TN was full of action
 

scone

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samgrant said:
Tis a pity Gen. Hood didn't use your excuse of 'ice and snow'.
samgrant said:
Are you sure this statue is for a 'Colored' soldier of the Union?

I imagine it must be dwarfted by all the statues of the 'Colored' soldiers of the CSA!

Not sure of Soldier monuments to Black Confederates but there are are monuments to faithfull Slaves, Indians and body servants, a colored Drummer and a monument for soldiers buried at a POW camp that list a few of the dead as Negros. In various places.


Fort Mills South Carolina 1895


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1860
DEDICATED TO THE FAITHFUL SLAVES WHO, LOYAL TO THE

SACRED TRUST, TOILED FOR THE SUPPORT OF THE ARMY,
WITH MATCHLESS DEVOTION, AND WITH STERLING FIDELITY
GUARDED OUR DEFENCELESS HOMES, WOMEN AND CHILDREN,
DURING THE STRUGGLE FOR THE PRINCIPLES OF OUR
"CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA"


1865



==============================



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Erected To The
CATAWBA INDIANS

BY


SAM'L ELLIOTT WHITE
AND
JOHN McKEE SPRATT


The latter is a descendant of Thos. "Kanahawa" Spratt and the
former a descendant of Wm. Elliott
(a kinsman of "Kanahawas")
two of the first settlers in this portion of the Indian Land
 

scone

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#10
Canton Mississippi 1896
Black Cavalry of Harvey's Scouts CSA

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ERECTED BY W.H. HOWCOTT TO THE MEMORY OF THE GOOD AND LOYAL SERVANTS WHO FOLLOWED THE FORTUNES OF HARVEY SCOUTS DURING THE CIVIL WAR.

TRUE WERE EACH AND ALL OF THEM

A TRIBUTE TO MY FAITHFUL SERVANT AND FRIEND WILLIS HOWCOTT, A COLORED BOY OF RARE LOYALTY AND FAITHFULNESS WHOSE MEMORY I CHERISH WITH DEEP GRATITUDE.

W.H. HOWCOTT, was only 15 years old when he joined Harvey's Scouts in 1864. Willis, his childhood playmate and friend, was only 13 but would not be dissuaded from being at his side. Willis was, tragically, killed in combat sometime in 1865 at the age of 14. The monument was erected by his friend years after the war, after he had left Mississippi for New Orleans and made his fortune. The memory of the loss of his close friend never left him. That W.H. Howcott returned 31 years after Willis' death to erect a 21 foot tall monument to their friendship speaks volumes.


=====================================​


Darlington South Carolina 1907
Confederate Drummer Henry Dad Brown


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HENRY BROWNDIED
NOV.2, 1907
Age 77 Years
SLEEP ON, BELOVED,
SLEEP AND
TAKE THY REST.
WE LOVED THEE WELL BUT

JESUS LOVES THEE BEST




Excerpts - The Darlington Press
November 1907

DEATH OF HENRY BROWN
Drummer of Darlington Guards And Well Known And Highly Respected Colored Man




On Saturday afternoon the old drummer Henry Brown, well known colored man, passed away. ...the Darlington Guards assembled at their armory and marched to the house under arms. There the Captain was requested to detail pall bearers from the ranks, which he did.

When the body was brought out, the company stood at present arms. The line of march was then taken up to the church. ...When the church was reached a representative five number of the white citizens of the town acting as pall bearers took the body into the church the Company again presenting arms.

The colored Masons...took its way to the cemetery where the rest of the masonic ritual was given...the bugler Mr. Angus Gainey sounded "taps" very softly and the Company fired three rounds over the grave. Should the stranger in our gates ask, "What mean ye by this service. Why should white people thus pay honor to a colored man?" The answer would be because he was a man. In life he was faithful to every trust, his word was his bond and not only were his friends numbered among those who live in Darlington but wherever he was known and that was throughout the length and breadth of the State.

The grave was covered with beautiful flowers, the offerings of his friends, both white and colored. Only in the South where the negro is known and appreciated could such a demonstration could have been seen, it was a cordial recognition of the worth of a citizen of this county whose death was a loss to the community.



Tribute to Henry Brown From Gen. W.E. James,
Who Knew Him Well


On Saturday evening Henry Brown, a most highly respected colored man, died. He had lived a long life and had been one of the land marks of this community, and from his conservative and upright life he had commanded the respect of both white and colored people. ...The Darlington Guards in full uniform with arms marched to his late residence and were placed in front of the hearse...it was determined that a number of white gentlemen should act as pall bearers---should take charge of the body and attend it from his residence to the colored Presbyterian church of which he was a member. Arriving at the church the Guards presented arms and the white pall bearers took it into the church...


Henry Brown came from Camden and had been a free man all his life...When the War broke out Henry Brown went with the Darlington Guards...and remained with that company until the 1st Regiment was disbanded. He then went with the 8th Regiment to Virginia as the drummer for that regiment. He was regularly enlisted in Company E...and he remained with that regiment till its reorganization in 1862, when all above the age of thirty-five were discharged....on the 21st of July '61 the regiment was stationed at Mitchels Ford on the South side of Bull Run. The battle began two miles above and at 12 o'clock the regiment was ordered to go where the battle was raging. As soon as the order came Henry began to beat the long roll. This indicated to a battery on the other side of the Run the position of the regiment and the shells began to fall thick and fast. It was some time before the Colonel could stop him but he was beating all the time regardless of the danger. He followed on to the battlefield and was under fire with the others.

After leaving the 8th regiment he joined Capt. S.H. Wilds' company and remained with the 21st S.C. regiment to the close of the war.

When...the reconstruction period began...Henry was given the office of Coroner, which he held for a while, but when he saw the injuries that were being done to the white people by those men who were in office, he allied himself with the white people and remained so for the rest of his life.

When Camp Darlington No. 785 U.C.V. was organized he had his name enrolled and never missed a reunion...He prided himself on being a Veteran and took great interest in the camp. We shall miss him. He has gone to join the great majority of those who marched to the tap of his drum. But we, too, shall soon follow them.

W.E. James


 

william42

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Excerpts - The Darlington Press
November 1907

DEATH OF HENRY BROWN
Drummer of Darlington Guards And Well Known And Highly Respected Colored Man
Should the stranger in our gates ask, "What mean ye by this service. Why should white people thus pay honor to a colored man?" The answer would be because he was a man. In life he was faithful to every trust, his word was his bond and not only were his friends numbered among those who live in Darlington but wherever he was known and that was throughout the length and breadth of the State.
Really nice post Steve, thanks.

Terry
 


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