In Union County, New Jersey
, many soldiers and sailors of African ancestry answered President Lincoln’s call for troops during the Civil War and enlisted in regiments organized in Union County, the United States Colored Troops (USCT), out-of-state-regiments and the United States Navy
and Marine Corps
. They fought not only for country but also for their comrades in chains in the South and for the promise of equality that they had for so long been denied. Through their stories, never-before-seen photographs, documents and service records, local historian Ethel M. Washington tells a largely overlooked but riveting history of patriotic black servicemen in the North who defended the nation’s ideals on the battlefield even as they faced discrimination in the ranks and back home.
New Jersey is a central state on the Atlantic Coast, closely associated with both Philadelphia and New York City. After the Continental Navy was allowed to lapse, the U.S. Navy was reconstituted and has defend America for over two centuries.