If you saw Edward Zwick's "Glory," (1990) with Morgan Freeman and Denzel Washington, you know that at least one storied regiment of African American troops fought during the Civil War. But did you know that there were 174 more, totaling between 180,000 - 209,000 troops, more soldiers than the Confederates had in the field late in the war? Further, were you aware that there were also 20,000 black sailors, roughly one-fifth of the Union Navy, who made the successful Union blockade of Southern ports possible? They were authorized by the Emancipation Proclamation.
Gene Betit will explore the under-appreciated role black soldiers and sailors played during our country's most savage war. The talk is based on his most recent book, Collective Amnesia: American Apartheid, African Americans' 400 Years in North American, 1619-2019. Books can be purchased through the authors website, genebetit.com. The HandleyRegionalLibrarySystem also has a copy that can be checked out.