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Veterans Day Discussion featuring Jeff Kannel
11/10/2021 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Hundreds of African American soldiers and regimental employees represented Wisconsin in the Civil War, and many of them lived in the state either before or after the conflict. And yet, if these individuals are mentioned at all in histories of the state, it is with a sentence or two about their small numbers, or the belief that they all were from slaveholding states and served as substitutes for Wisconsin draftees. Relative to the total number of Badgers who served in the Civil War, African Americans soldiers were few, but they constituted a significant number in at least five regiments of the United States Colored Infantry and several other companies. Their lives before and after the war in rural communities, small towns, and cities form an enlightening story of acceptance and respect for their service but rejection and discrimination based on their race.