Colored Troops Win Virginia: The Battle of New Market Heights

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Anita Wills

Anita Wills

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Virginia's Governor McConnell has made April Confederate History Month, and managed to avoid mention slavery. However one of the last losing Battles of the Civil War was won by a Soldiers from the United States Colored Troops. It was the Battle of New Market Heights. The Colored Troops displayed their worth at the Battle of New Market Heights (Chaffin's Farm) near Richmond on September 29, 1864. Fourteen men, including Christian Fleetwood, who later became an active community leader in Washington, D.C. were presented the Medal of Honor for valor at New Market Heights. Several were awarded to men who took charge of their units after all white commanders had fallen. Soldiers of distinction were also given the Army of the James or "Butler" medal, designated by champion of the black troops, Gen. Benjamin Butler and the only medal created solely for the United States Colored Troops. A celebration should include all of the players, including a depiction of the actual battle where the soldiers from the United States Colored Troops won the day. It was a good day for slaves and a wonderful day for America. The Battle of New Market Heights will be the topic of the show tonight.

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