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May 27, 2021

African American Children in the Civil War Through Amazing Photos

The Civil War touched the lives of children in both similar and vastly different ways. The Civil War molded children’s lives as adults and shaped their attitudes, opinions, and prejudices that would pass from generation to generation.

African American children during the Civil War

The children of the Civil War shared enthusiasm for the war, were burdened with greater responsibilities, and endured physical and emotional hardships. The end of the war for a Northern child meant victory, excitement, and success. The end of the war for a Southern child meant defeat, disappointment, and a transformed way of living.

For enslaved African American children, the end of the Civil War meant freedom and hope, which did not come without years of tremendous sacrifices, challenges, changes, and hardships.

Here below is a set of amazing photos from The Library of Congress that shows portraits of African American children during the Civil War from 1861 to 1865.

Nathan Jones, Camp Metcalf, Virginia, circa 1961

Two unidentified escaped slaves wearing ragged clothes, circa 1861

A Virginia slave child, 1863

Charley Taylor, formerly enslaved child from New Orleans, seated with book in front of painted backdrop showing seascape, 1863

Fannie Virginia Casseopia Lawrence, a redeemed slave child, 5 years of age. Redeemed in Virginia, by Catherine S. Lawrence, baptized in Brooklyn, at Plymouth Church, by Henry Ward Beecher, May 1863

Isaac and Rosa, slave children from New Orleans, 1863

Rebecca, a slave girl from New Orleans, 1863

Rebecca, Charley, and Rosa, slave children from New Orleans, 1863

Rebecca, the slave girl, circa 1863

White and black slaves from New Orleans, 1863

Charley, a slave boy from New Orleans, 1864

Our protection, 1864

Taylor, young drummer boy for 78th Colored Troops Infantry, in rags, circa 1864

Taylor, young drummer boy for 78th Colored Troops Infantry, in uniform with drum, circa 1864

Wilson, Charley, Rebecca & Rosa, slaves from New Orleans, circa 1864




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