Frederick Douglass

While many black men hastened to enlist, sentiment was divided among blacks as to whether the "white man's war" was a just cause for African Americans. Leading abolitionist Frederick Douglass inspired many black men to enlist with these words:

Let the black man get upon his person the brass letters "U.S."; let him get an eagle on his button, and a musket on his shoulder and bullets in his pocket, and there is no power on earth which can deny that he has earned the right to citizenship in the United States.

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