CLEVELAND (AP) — People in Cleveland have honored scores of black men who served in the Civil War and then were largely forgotten.
Hundreds gathered Monday for a Memorial Day observance at the city’s Woodland Cemetery, where 86 black Civil War veterans are buried. The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer reported many of the graves don’t have headstones.
Historian Paul LaRue told the newspaper Cleveland was a prime recruiting area when the Union sought blacks to bolster its ranks. He said about 5,000 black soldiers from Ohio fought in the war.
Woodland Cemetery Foundation President Michelle Day said a volunteer is working with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to get headstones for all 86 of the graves. She said the men were members of what was known as the U.S. Colored Troops.