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Soldiering for Freedom: How the Union Army Recruited, Trained, and Deployed the U.S. Colored Troops. By Bob Luke and John David Smith. (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2014. Pp. 131. $39.95 cloth; $19.95 paper)

Soldiering for Freedom traces the Union army’s development of the United States Colored Troops during the Civil War, showing how the nation came to accept the presence of African Americans in the military. The four chapters outline the history of African American involvement with the U.S. military, covering recruitment, training, and fighting, all of which marked an important step toward full citizenship for African Americans. Perhaps more importantly, although African American soldiers confronted ever-present racial prejudices among the white officers and soldiers, they nonetheless fought heroically. Concisely written, and with striking photographs of the soldiers, this work is ideal for anyone with an interest in Civil War and African American history. [End Page 158]



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