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AfriGeneas Military Research Forum

26 African-American Civil War vets honored

"Here in Ithaca, we have a unique Memorial Day marker. At St. James African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, 116 Cleveland Ave., beside “old glory” stands a black, African gemite marble table with white-carved messages dedicated to the 26 Ithacan soldiers of the 26th Regiment.

"By 1861, Ithaca had a small, thriving black community. Ithaca was a busy station on the Underground Railroad for escaped slaves traveling from the South to freedom in Canada. Both Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglass were closely involved in it, here at St. James. Douglass said, “Once let the black man get upon his person the brass letters, U.S. ... there is no power on earth which can deny that he has earned the right to citizenship in the United States.”

"Twenty-six young Ithaca black men enlisted and were sent to Rikers Island, where they were incorporated into the 26th Regiment of the United States Colored Troops."

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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