Freedom by the Sword: The U.S. Colored Troops 1862-1867 - South Atlantic Coast, Gulf Coast, Mississippi River, Southern States, Reconstruction
This is primarily an operational history of the Colored Troops in action. Other works have dealt with such subjects as the Colored Troops and racial discrimination, the soldiers' lives in camp and at their homes, and how these men fared as veterans during Reconstruction and afterward. Instead, Freedom by the Sword tells what they did as soldiers during the war. More
The impetus for Freedom by the Sword came from Brig. Gen. (Ret.) John S. Brown, the U.S. Army's Chief of Military History from 1998 until his retirement in 2005. William A. Dobak, an authority on the history of black soldiers in the nineteenth century and an award-winning historian at the Center of Military History, took charge of the project beginning in 2003.
This is primarily an operational history of the Colored Troops in action. Other works have dealt with such subjects as the Colored Troops and racial discrimination, the soldiers' lives in camp and at their homes, and how these men fared as veterans during Reconstruction and afterward. Instead, Freedom by the Sword tells what they did as soldiers during the war. This book is about American soldiers, fighting under the flag of the Union to preserve that Union and to free their enslaved brothers and sisters. Despite formidable obstacles of poor leadership and deep prejudices against the very idea of African Americans being armed and sent into battle, these men rallied to the colors in large numbers and fought. It is thus a quintessentially American story. It is also perhaps the only book to examine the Colored Troops' formation, training, and operations during the entire span of their service, and in every theater of the war in which they served. By doing so, it underscores the unique nature of their contributions both to Union victory and to their own liberation. That there are lessons here for the modern soldier goes without saying, for however much the technology of war evolves, its essence changes little.
Contents include: FOREWORD * PREFACE * Chapters: 1. Mustering In—Federal Policy on Emancipation and Recruitment * 2. The South Atlantic Coast, 1861-1863 * 3. The South Atlantic Coast, 1863-1865 * 4. Southern Louisiana and the Gulf Coast, 1862-1863 * 5. Southern Louisiana and the Gulf Coast, 1863-1865 * 6. The Mississippi River and Its Tributaries, 1861-1863 * 7. Along the Mississippi River, 1863-1865 * 8. Arkansas, Indian Territory, and Kansas, 1863-1865 * 9. Middle Tennessee, Alabama, and Georgia, 1863-1865 * 10. North Carolina and Virginia, 1861-1864 * 11. Virginia, May-October 1864 * 12. Kentucky, North Carolina, and Virginia, 1864-1865 * 13. South Texas, 1864-1867 * 14. Reconstruction, 1865-1867 * 15. Conclusion * Bibliographical Note * Abbreviations