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North Newport News in Newport News, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Two USCT Heroes

Freedom in Their Bones

 
 
Two USCT Heroes CWT Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, July 20, 2013
1. Two USCT Heroes CWT Marker
Inscription.  Two African American Civil War veterans, Pvt. Edward Diggs and Sgt. Anthony W. Poole, are buried here. Each enlisted in Co. G, 36th U.S. Colored Troops, in Yorktown. Blacks sought to enlist earlier in the war but were banned until after the Emancipation Proclamation was issued on January 1, 1863. About 200,000 served under the Stars and Stripes. A former slave wrote, “I felt like a man with a uniform on and a gun in my hand. I felt freedom in my bones.”

Black recruits, mostly escaped slaves from eastern North Carolina and southeastern Virginia, formed the regiment. Poole (born in Surry County on August 30, 1845) enlisted and was appointed sergeant on October 3, 1863. Diggs (born in James City County in January 1845) enlisted as a private on October 5. The 36th guarded Confederate prisoners at Point Lookout, Maryland, and then fought around Petersburg and Richmond. On September 29, 1864, Poole was wounded in action as the regiment captured the Confederate lines at the base of New Market Heights east of Richmond. On April 3, 1865, the 36th was among the first regiments to enter the city. The 36th was ordered to Brazos Santiago
Two USCT Heroes CWT Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, July 20, 2013
2. Two USCT Heroes CWT Marker
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at the southern tip of Texas on the Gulf of Mexico. En route, at Fort Monroe, Poole was discharged on June 3, 1865. Diggs was discharged in New Orleans on October 28, 1866.

Poole, a widower, died on September 12, 1912. Diggs received a pension in 1890. His wife, Susan, received a widow’s pension in 1914 after he died.

“Once let a the black man get upon his person the brass letters, U.S., let him get an eagle on his shoulders and bullets in his pocket and there is no power on earth that can deny that he has earned the right to citizenship in the United States.” – Frederick Douglass

(captions)
Unknown U.S. Colored Troops sergeant Courtesy Library of Congress
Unknown U.S. Colored Troops soldier with family Courtesy Library of Congress
 
Erected by Virginia Civil War Trails.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African AmericansCemeteries & Burial SitesWar, US Civil. A significant historical month for this entry is January 1861.
 
Location. 37° 7.232′ N, 76° 31.363′ W. Marker is in North Newport News in Newport News, Virginia. Marker can be reached from Campbell Road 0.1 miles north of Warwick Boulevard (U.S. 60), on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is
Pvt. Edward Diggs gravesite image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, July 20, 2013
3. Pvt. Edward Diggs gravesite
at or near this postal address: 3628 Campbell Rd, Newport News VA 23602, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Providence Mennonite Church (approx. 0.9 miles away); Young’s Mill (approx. 1.1 miles away); a different marker also named Young’s Mill (approx. 1.1 miles away); Mathews Mill (approx. 1.1 miles away); a different marker also named Young’s Mill (approx. 1.1 miles away); First Peninsula Defense Line (approx. 1.1 miles away); Warwick County Confederate Monument (approx. 1.2 miles away); Warwick Courthouse (approx. 1.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in North Newport News.
 
Sgt. Anthony W. Poole gravesite image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, July 20, 2013
4. Sgt. Anthony W. Poole gravesite
Unidentified African American soldier in Union sergeant uniform holding a rifle image. Click for full size.
circa 1863
5. Unidentified African American soldier in Union sergeant uniform holding a rifle
Library of Congress [LC-DIG-ppmsca-27058]
Unidentified African American soldier in Union uniform with wife and two daughters image. Click for full size.
circa 1863
6. Unidentified African American soldier in Union uniform with wife and two daughters
Library of Congress [LC-DIG-ppmsca-26454]
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 17, 2020. It was originally submitted on July 21, 2013, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia. This page has been viewed 908 times since then and 29 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on July 21, 2013, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia.

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Apr. 19, 2021