|Photo by Lance Mosier on Morris Island |
looking South from Cummings Point
The sword's discovery is pretty amazing find and the Sword's history can be found on the Massachusetts Historical Society blog The Beehive: A Treasure Rediscovered: The Civil War Sword of Robert Gould Shaw, 54th Regiment
The battle the MA 54th is probably most famous for is their assault on Fort Wagner in the harbor of Charleston, SC which took place July 18th, 1863. I was vacation in Charleston, SC back in 2012 and the closest I got was from Cummings Point where my family was searching for Shells as part of a charter experience. I wish I could have explored further down the beach but was limited with time and having two of my children excited about what they could find washed ashore.
I wanted to share some resources on the MA 54th and African-American Soldier experiences in the US Civil War I've collected the past few years to help tell their stories to my students I teach in my 8th Grade US History classroom. If you have other resources I would love to hear about them.
Video Lecture via CSPAN: U.S. Colored Troops in the Civil War by History Professor Roger Davidson (April 2012) is a good overview of the history of the U.S. Colored Troops. I don't typically share this lecture with my students, but I do use this to help strengthen my own understanding of the topic.
The Civil War in 4 Minutes has two great short videos that I like to share with students to help them get a short overview of Black Soldiers in the US Civil War.
The 54th Massachusetts
The Battle of Fort Wagner via Civil War Trust has lots of information, maps, and pictures on the battle.
As I learned this summer while visiting The Frederick Douglass National Historic Site in Washington D.C., Fredrick Douglass two sons served in the MA 54th. The National Archives has a scanned image of their Company Descriptive Book that I hope to share with students this coming school year. The National Archives has a nice Educator Resources page on Black Soldiers in the Civil War I hope to incorporate with my students during the next school year.
The Library of Congress has a great collection of Photographs of African Americans During The Civil War that you can use as resources for students to analyze. Check out one of my earlier blogs on Getting Started With Primary Sources for ideas on using these images with students.
The NPS Solider and Sailor Database is a great resource that I have mentioned in an earlier blog post Making The Most of Memorial Day. Here is a list of soldiers who fought in the MA 54th: Search for Soldiers MA 54th to give students a starting point to research a particular soldier.
Robert Gould Shaw and the 54th Regiment Memorial in Boston is a place I hope to visit someday. The NPS Park Website has some good general information on the memorial and the regiment.
History Channel Links On The Topic:
- Long-Lost Sword owned by Leader of Black Civil War Unit Found by Brynn Holland
- The 54th Massachusetts Infantry
- Black Civil War Soldiers
Do you have some great resources on The Massachusetts 54th Regiment or on African-American Soldiers in the US Civil War? I would love to hear about them in the comments section below.