Hero Tales from American History, page 109
by Henry Cabot Lodge

<< Return to Title Details

 < previous  next > 

110

onor in an assault upon Fort Wagner, which was ordered for that night. He had proved that the negroes could be made into a good regiment, and now the second great opportunity had come, to prove their fighting quality. He wanted to demonstrate that his men could fight side by side with white soldiers, and show to somebody beside their officers what stuff they were made of. He, therefore, accepted the dangerous duty with gladness. Late in the day the troops were marched across Folly and Morris islands and formed in line of battle within six hundred yards of Fort Wagner. At half-past seven the order for the charge was given, and the regiment advanced. When they were within a hundred yards of the fort, the rebel fire opened with such effect that the first battalion hesitated and wavered. Colonel Shaw sprang to the front, and waving his sword, shouted: "Forward, 54th!" With another cheer, the men rushed through the ditch, and gained a parapet on the right. Colonel Shaw was one of the first to scale the walls. As he stood erect, a noble figure, ordering his men forward and shouting to them to press on, he was shot dead and fell into the fort. After his fall, the assault was repulsed.

General Haywood, commanding the rebel forces, said to a Union prisoner: "I knew Colonel Shaw before the war, and then esteemed him. Had he been in command of white troops, I should have given him an honorable burial. As it is, I shall bury him in the common trench, with the negroes that fell with him." He little knew that he was giving the dead soldier the most honorable burial that man could have devised, for the savage words told unmistakably that Robert Shaw's work had not been in vain. The order to bury him with his "niggers," which ran through the North and remained fixed in our history, showed, in a flash of light, the hideous barbarism of a system which made such things and such feelings possible. It also showed that slavery was wounded to the death, and that the brutal phrase was the angry snarl of a dying tiger. Such words

 < previous  next > 

(advanced)

Help ManyBooks by sharing this page!

See it as donating a moment of your social media time, every little thing helps us improve and stay online.

Featured Books

Cover image for Hero Tales from American History, page 109

Who Murdered Mr. Malone?

Garden Girls Christian Cozy Mystery Series Book 1
Hope Callaghan

Who Murdered Mr. Malone? Book 1 of the Garden G... Read more

Cover image for Hero Tales from American History, page 109

Phantasia

Book One: Into the Rain
M.U. Riyadad

After finding the body of a dragon in a metalli... Read more

Cover image for Hero Tales from American History, page 109

Fearsome

Fearsome Series Book 1
S.A. Wolfe

*This is a stand-alone book in the Fearsome Ser... Read more

Cover image for Hero Tales from American History, page 109

Nano Contestant

Episode 1: Whatever It Takes
Leif Sterling

Fans of the Hunger Games and Sci-Fi Thrillers will... Read more

Cover image for Hero Tales from American History, page 109

Anais of Brightshire

The Blood Mage Chronicles Book 1
Jamie Wilson

While rumors of monsters rising in the south bring... Read more

Cover image for Hero Tales from American History, page 109

Sound of Sirens

Tales of Skylge #1
Jen Minkman

On the island of Skylge, electricity is only fo... Read more

(Promote your book here)