Black Confederates


The Gaslighting Commission and American History

This month marks 160 years since a relatively unrecognized, but noteworthy, battle between Union and Confederate forces in which black soldiers participated in relatively large numbers. The noteworthiness was not in terms of strategic significance, consequential results, exceptional leadership, or recognized valor. Rather, Olustee was the battle in which a relatively recent phenomenon – black U.S. soldier regiments – probably…
Forrest L. Marion
February 29, 2024

Why The Confederacy Fell?

Of all people to go to when attempting to answer the question of why the Confederacy fell, there is probably no one more qualified than Jefferson Davis himself, the first and last president of the Confederate States of America. In an excerpt from his work, The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government, he writes, "The act of February 17,…
Cody Davis
April 28, 2023

A Tale of Two Black Seamen

In early 1864 Brigadier-General Robert F. Hoke was tasked with liberating the enemy-occupied and fortified town of Plymouth on the Roanoke River in northeastern North Carolina. He began formulating his attack with the naval assistance of the still-incomplete ironclad ram CSS Albemarle, which was literally built in a cornfield well upriver from Plymouth. The unfinished ship had its steam up…
Bernard Thuersam
April 12, 2023

Southern Artist and Historian

African American Gregory Newson, a talented artist, was raised in New York but now lives and does his work in South Carolina.  He has made contributions, both in art and writing, to Confederate history that deserve to be better recognised. In 2016 he published Get Forrest, a beautifully illustrated biography. One could not ask for a more fair and interesting…
Clyde Wilson
March 3, 2023

A Modern Black Man’s Confederate Journey

A review of Robert E. Lee's Orderly, A Modern Black Man's Confederate Journey by Al Arnold (Newson Publishing, 2015) I think it is safe to say that there isn’t a man alive who loves the South, particularly Mississippi, more than Al Arnold.  Over the Christmas season, I had the pleasure of making his acquaintance through a live Facebook interview conducted…
Julie Paine
January 26, 2023
BlogReview Posts

Blacks in Gray

A Review of Blacks in Gray Uniforms (Arcadia, 2018) by Phillip Thomas Tucker South Carolina Confederate history is my area of research, so I was interested to come across the book Blacks in Gray Uniforms, which gives information on some black Confederate soldiers from the Palmetto State, and I wanted to bring it to the attention of the readers of…
Karen Stokes
May 18, 2022

The 1862 Louisiana Native Guard

In April 1861, a public meeting was held in New Orleans, Louisiana to discuss Governor Thomas O. Moore's call for volunteers to defend the South against the invading Union army as the War Between the States was just beginning. This particular meeting did not consist of white men, however. It was led and attended by what the newspapers called the…
Shane Anderson
March 28, 2022

Adding Monuments

In a speech to the Georgia legislature in 1866, Former Vice President of the Confederacy Alexander Stephens urged, "That wise and humane provisions should be made for " and that they "may stand equal before the law, in possession and enjoyment of all rights of person, liberty, and property. Many considerations claim this at your hands. Among these may be…
Donald Livingston
December 27, 2021

Black Confederates in Reconstruction Newspapers

In an editorial published a little over a year after the Civil War ended, a Georgia newspaper writer expressed regret that the South had not accepted "the aid of the negroes" when it was offered. He even went so far as to say "we were fools" for refusing that help, and then he went even further and credited black Union…
Shane Anderson
October 16, 2020

Black Confederate Sharpshooters

One of the more interesting things about the Civil War is the primary evidence, from Union accounts, that show black men serving as sharpshooters for the Confederacy. Unfortunately today you have men such as Kevin M. Levin, among others, who ignore or gloss over these accounts. In a 2015 article by Ernie Suggs, of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, states “Boston-based historian…
Wayne Pease
July 23, 2020

What the Newspapers Said: The Black Confederate “Myth” Examined

Where did the belief in the "black Confederate soldier" originate? Did it begin in 1977, after the success of the television mini-series Roots caused people to reevaluate race and slavery during the Civil War? Were stories of these men absent before then, as one of many historians who tackles this topic claims? Is it accurate or indeed fair to describe…
Shane Anderson
October 9, 2019

Black Southern Support for Secession and War

Sooner or later any student of the War for Southern Independence will run across discussion of "black Confederates," which may well be the most controversial topic related to the war. From an objective standpoint it might seem odd that there is any controversy at all. The South had a large black population in 1861, mostly slave but some free, and…
Shane Anderson
July 22, 2019

What Did 19th Century Black Americans Think About Confederate Monuments?

One argument used by those wanting to remove Confederate statues is that contemporary blacks had little chance to oppose them when they were erected.  Aside from anecdotal evidence that blacks joined white crowds to observe the dedication ceremonies, one example in Mississippi provides undeniable evidence of explicit high-level black support. In 1890 the Mississippi legislature voted on a bill to appropriate $10,000 for…
Philip Leigh
May 31, 2019

Killed for the Flag

Anthony Hervey was born in Water Valley, Mississippi in 1965. He grew up in Oxford, served in the military for a short period, then went on to the University of Mississippi, where he studied sociology and Afro Studies. He then traveled to London, England where he studied Race & Ethnicity at the University of London and served as an intern…
Michael Martin
February 2, 2018