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AfriGeneas Military Research Forum Archive

Old dog learns new tricks

Was reading my local rag (Jackson, MS Clarior-Ledger) early this AM and came across a wire service story that got my attention.

Over the past forty years or so I've learned a thing or two about blacks who served as regulars in the Old Army--ca l866 until I start to lose interest shortly after Brownsville;I have some knowledge of the fellows who served in the trenches during WWI using French weapons and uniforms (and with the French daily wine ration); I am not a stranger to some of the history of the U.S.C.T. volunteers;
I know a little about the blacks who took pot shots at the British at New Orleans;and a bit less about the role of blacks during the Revolutionary War. I know nothing about blacks who fought at Gettysburg or rode with Custer

But the general topic of blacks in the military interests me and I am always willing and delighted to learn more. And this brings me back to the wire service story.

Seems that the fine folks of Savannah, GA have voted about half a million bucks for a monument to "the some 500 Haitian troops who joined the Anmericans and French soldiers in an unsuccessful attempt to drive the British from Savannah. Haiitians made up the largest military unit to fight in the 1779 siege."

Haitians ??????????? Well, news to me. My immediate reaction upon reading this story was-- (l)well, I know next to nothing about this period, and (2) as Sharon Heist would quickly note--something in print may or may not be true.

So, can any readers of this form message me with some references to good secondary sources (I do not need primary materials as I only want to know the basic details) regarding the contribution of these Haitian troops. I assume these fellows were French colonial soldiers.
This old dog is ready to be enlightened.


Tom Phillips

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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