Buffalo in Erie County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Commemoration for African American Soldiers of the American Civil War
African Americans have fought in each of America's great conflicts, the early colonial wars, the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. However, until the Civil War, African Americans were never offically included in the military establishment of the United States. Federal law had prohibited their enlistment in state militias and from participation in the United States Army.
The Militia Act of 1862 permitted the Army to employ African Americans as laborers to free up frontline troops already in combat. In 1863, following President Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation, the Bureau of Colored Troops was created. Its purpose was to facilitate the recruitment of African American soldiers into the Union Army, coordinate and organize regiments from all parts of the country, and to handle personnel matters including rations and pay.
Despite these gains, many doubted that they would make good soldiers. However, those Black men who enlisted fought valiantly and courageously, often fearlessly facing death in many battles, notably at Port Hudson, Louisiana, Milliken's Bend, Mississippi, Ft. Wagner, South Carolina, Ft. Pillow, Tennessee and Petersburg, Virginia.
This plaque is in grateful tribute to all Civil War troops of color, especially the 14 that are interred in the G.A.R. lot here at Forest Lawn
Erected by Bennett-Wells American Legion Womens' Auxiliary #1780 and the Civil War Plaque Committee, American Legion Post #1780, Agape Foundations, Inc., Friends of NYS Assembly-Women, Crystal Peoples-Stokes, Gamma Phi Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority, Erie County Committee American Legion Auxiliary, Dr. Seneca Yought, Assistant Professor; African Studies, Niagara University, East Aurora American Legion Auxiliary #362, St. Martin DeForres Womens' Guild, Pat Kavanagh, Jo Ann Carlton-Peters.
Location. 42° 55.382′ N, 78° 51.49′ W. Marker is in Buffalo, New York, in Erie County. Marker can be reached from Main Street (New York State Route 5) 0.1 miles north of West Delavan Avenue. Touch for map. Marker is in Forest Lawn Cemetery along the south road, about 75 feet from the entrance arch off Main Street at West Delevan Avenue. Marker is in this post office area: Buffalo NY 14208, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. This Monument Honors the Soldiers and Sailors (within shouting distance of this marker); Forest Lawn Cemetery (within shouting distance of this marker); To Honor the Memory of Our Dead To Preserve the Memories (within shouting distance of this marker); On This Day of May 30, 1991, The Semper Fidelis Post #356 (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Erastus Granger (about 600 feet away); In Honor of Those Men and Women (approx. ¼ mile away); Mary Morris Burnett Talbert (approx. 0.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Buffalo.
Categories. • African Americans • War, US Civil •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on March 2, 2015, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York. This page has been viewed 286 times since then and 4 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on March 2, 2015, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.