Posts tagged: African-American

United States Colored Troops

By , February 12, 2010


Many people find it hard to believe that any African American, slave or free, would have willingly served on the side of the Confederacy in the American Civil War. But Earl Ijames, a curator at the North Carolina Museum of History, says that hundreds did just that, and that their reasons for fighting were as varied and complex as those of white soldiers. These black soldiers, as well as the blacks who served the Union cause, will be the topic of a presentation sponsored by the Chatham County Historical Association on Sunday, February 28, 2010. The public is welcome at this free program, entitled Colored Confederates and United States Colored Union Troops, which will be held at the Pittsboro campus of Central Carolina Community College at 2:00 pm in the multipurpose room.

“The historically accurate term for the African Americans in the service of the Southern cause is ‘colored Confederates,'” Ijames says, and thousands of them went to war from Southern states, including North Carolina. Some were slaves sent in place of their masters, or were forced or volunteered to serve alongside them. Others were free blacks who offered their services. Whatever their reasons for serving, Ijames says, these men deserve to be recognized for their valor. “It’s a miscarriage of justice for this many people to be just blotted out of history,” he believes.

Ijames has spent some 15 years studying this interesting and controversial topic. At the presentation on February 28, he will present some examples and discuss the historical evidence available to document them. He will invite questions following the presentation.

The public is invited to attend the program to learn more about this fascinating and often ignored subject.

For more information about this program, see the Chatham County Historical Association website: or call Beverly Wiggins at 919-542-4478.

First Person History

By , February 12, 2010

Today on The State of Things

First Person History: February is the month when all Americans are asked to reflect on the African-American experience.

On today’s show we’ll do just that by opening the oral history archive at UNC-Chapel Hill to get a few first-hand accounts of the struggle for civil rights.

Among the voices recorded decades ago are the Reverend Doctor Pauli Murray, a civil and women’s rights advocate, and Lemuel Delaney, nephew of the famous civil rights pioneers Sadie and Bessie Delaney.

Seth Kotch, coordinator of Oral History Digital Initiatives in the Center for the Study of The American South at UNC-Chapel Hill, joins host Frank Stasio to discuss these first person narratives that shed light on the Southern experience today.

–> Listen live at noon on 91.5 FM or hear broadcast online anytime from the website.

The State of Things is a live program hosted by Frank Stasio devoted to bringing the issues, personalities, and places of North Carolina to our listeners. We present the Tar Heel experience through sound, story, discussion, commentary and listener participation through calls. Let us know your thoughts during the program at 1.877.962.9862 or by emailing Send your tweets (comments and questions) to our twitter.

Host Frank Stasio

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