neverstill yearning to
|The Martyrs of the Race Course dedication from the USslave blog|
By the spring of 1865, after a long siege and prolonged bombardment, the beautiful port city of Charleston, S.C., lay in ruin and occupied by Union troops. Among the first soldiers to enter and march up Meeting Street singing liberation songs was the 21st United States Colored Infantry; their commander accepted the city’s official surrender. Whites had largely abandoned the city, but thousands of blacks, mostly former slaves, had remained, and they conducted a series of commemorations to declare their sense of the meaning of the war. The largest of these events, forgotten until I had some extraordinary luck in an archive at Harvard, took place on May 1, 1865.
|My grandmother came to the US on the Gripsholm. |
She was just 18 years old.
|The home the Gagne brothers left behind in France |
(source Gagnier History Website)