The Gospel Army

Big Bob
Battle of Port Hudson
Millikens Bend
Fort Wagner
Gen. Wild Expedition
Battle of Honey Hill
Fort Pillow
Poison Springs
Petersburg Va.
The Crater
New Market Heights
Battle of Nashville
Battle of Saltville
Richmond Va.


The Battle of Fort Wagner


Library of Congress

Storming Fort Wagner by Louis Kurz & Alexander Allison 1893

 Glory (1989 Movie) - "We're ready Colonel."

 On July 18, 1863 the 54th Massachusetts attacked Fort Wagner (depicted in the movie "Glory" and W. H. Carney was awarded a Congressional Medal of Honor many years later. A Flag belonging to the 54th Massachusetts was the first Christian flag to enter the Civil War.


  The Fifty-fourth did well and nobly; only the fall of Col. Shaw prevented them from entering the fort.  They moved up as gallantly as any troops could, and, with their enthusiasm, they deserved a better fate.   Sergeant-major Lewis H. Douglass, son of Frederick Douglass, the celebrated orator, sprang upon the parapet close behind Col. Shaw, and cried out, " Come, boys, come, let's fight for God and Governor Andrew."  This brave young man was the last to leave the parapet. Before the regiment reached the parapet, the color-sergeant was wounded; and, while in the act of falling, the colors were seized by Sergt. William H. Carney, who bore them up, and mounted the parapet, where he, too, received three severe wounds.  But, on orders being given to re tire, the color-bearer, though almost disabled, still held the emblem of liberty in the air, and followed his regiment by the aid of his comrades, and succeeded in reaching the hospital, where he fell exhausted and almost lifeless on the floor, saying, " The old flag; never touched the ground, boys."  Capt. Lewis F. Emilio, the junior captain, -all of his superiors having been killed or wounded, took command, and brought the regiment into camp. In the battle, the total loss in officers and men, killed and wounded, was two hundred and sixty-one.

  W. W. Brown, The Negro in the American Rebellion, p200

Glory (1989) The Last Battle

Brown recorded an important observation that was lost in history.

“This is the first Christian banner that has gone into our war.  By a strange, and yet not strange, providence, God has mistic this despised race the bearers of his standard.  They are thus the real leaders of the nation."


 William Wells Brown, The Negro in the American Rebellion, p153





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