Saturday, June 29, 2013

On April 9, 1865 at 5:30 p.m., 4,000 Confederate troops at Fort Blakeley surrendered to a Union force of 16,000 men. Three hours earlier Lee had surrendered to General Grant at Appomattox. Although the soldiers of Culpepper’s had surrendered, the Union army continued to fire upon them, consequently killing a few men in the Battery. Among those killed was their commander Lt. Joshua L. Moses of Sumter, SC. Lying mortally wounded, his last words were "For God’s sake, save my men they have surrendered". 

Josh was the last Confederate Jew to fall in battle, the first being his first cousin, Lt. Albert Moses Luria, who was killed in May of 1862 at Seven Pines, Virginia. At the battle of Fort Blakeley, Josh's brother Perry was wounded, and another brother, Horace, captured.

I believe there is a monument at Fort Blakeley, Alabama honoring the United States Colored Troops who executed prisoners of war and other Confederates trying to surrender ( and even shot their own officers !) after that battle, one of the final large engagements of the War.

“…many of the union black troops did attack the Confederate whites after surrendering, and even shot two of their own officers trying to stop them. One white sergeant who was commissioned an officer the day after the assault wrote home …and stated his regiment took no live prisoners, “they killed all they took to a man.”

Photo: Lt. Joshua L. Moses standing

The illegal and heinous actions of these USCT's are well documented, "The Siege of Blakeley and the Campaign of Mobile," by Roger B. Hansen & Norman A. Nicolson, (published by Historic Blakley press, with an introduction by Mary Y. Grice, Executive Director, Historic Blakeley Foundation).

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