Next Up: The 27th USCI: Ohio Men of Color, Men of Courage

April 10, 2019 (Wednesday) — Fighting for Our Freedom with “Unconditional Loyalty.”  

Marvin Fletcher, professor emeritus of history at Ohio University, will make a presentation on the 27th United States Colored Infantry. This regiment, like the 5th USCI, had a number of Ohio men in its ranks. It was organized at Camp Delaware in Delaware, Ohio, and began its active service on 16 January 1864. The regiment was involved in many significant actions, including: the Siege of Petersburg, the Battle of the Crater, the Battle of Boydton Plank Road, the First Battle of Fort Fisher, the Second Battle of Fort Fisher, and the Carolinas Campaign, Occupation of Raleigh, Surrender of Johnston and his army, and early Reconstruction duty in North Carolina until September 1865. 

This is a very important presentation about an aspect of the Late Rebellion that has been overlooked for way too long. Recent scholarship has revised the estimates on the number of African Americans who fought in the war to around 200,000. Lincoln himself once said that the Emancipation Proclamation and the massive influx of “colored men” into the Federal Army turned the tide of the war in favor of the Union. The regimental history of the 78th Ohio Veteran Volunteer Infantry, makes reference to this fact. It was known then by soldiers in the ranks — both black and white — but over the years it faded from pubic memory. It’s time to remember, once again!