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Blacks in the American Civil War Despite extreme prejudices from the white society African American soldiers were true heroes in the American Civil War At the beginning of the Civil War Lincoln called for a recruitment of 75000 men Many blacks came to volunteer but were sent away unwanted Most of the white population considered the Civil War to be a White mans war Gov David Todd had said This is a white mans government and we are able to defend and protect it McRae Although very few there were some white generals who wanted to recruit blacks into the Army Lincolns reasoning behind not letting blacks into the Army was because he wanted to preserve the Union without having to deal with the issue of slavery In addition he did not want the Border States to separate from the Union and join the Confederacy If he let blacks join the Army then white soldiers would have refused to fight with them Many people felt that blacks were not able to fight as well as whites and considered it a waste to enlist them Gov John Andrews of Massachusetts said It is not my opinion that our generals when any man comes to the standard and desires to defend the flag will find it important to light a candle and see what his complexion is or to consult the family Bible to ascertain whether his grandfather came from the banks of the Thanes or of the Senegal McRae As the Union drove into the Confederate territory slaves would try to take refuge in the Union camps In the beginning when they were caught the Union sent them to their owners but after a period of time the Union decided to let them perform support service for the Northern war effort In time as many as 200000 blacks worked as laborers cooks teamsters and occasionally spies Fredrick Douglass a powerful black leader in New
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