Petersburg National Battlefield Park

Historical Significance

On June 15, 1864, a division of the U.S. Colored Troops in the XVIII Corps helped capture and secure a section of the Dimmock Line in Petersburg. The other USCT division at Petersburg was with the IX Corps and fought in the Battle of the Crater on July 30, 1864. The greatest concentration of USCT during the war was at Petersburg. In total, nearly 187,000 African-Americans served in the Union army.

In December 1864, all the United States Colored Troops around Petersburg were incorporated into three divisions and became the XXV Corps of the Army of the James. It was the largest black force assembled during the war and varied from between 9,000 to 16,000 men. During the Petersburg Campaign, USCTs participated in six major engagements and earned 15 of the 16 Medals of Honor awarded to African-American soldiers in the Civil War. 

Physical Description

This is a Civil War battlefield and contains a stone memorial honoring black soldiers. The memorial is shaped like a gray funerary headstone. The inscription reads "In memory of the valorous service of regiments and companies of the U.S. Colored Troops Army of the James and Army of the Potomac Siege of Petersburg 1864-65.

Geographical and Contact Information

1539 Hickory Hill Road
Petersburg, Virginia
23803
Phone: 804-732-3531

Cite this Page:

Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, “Petersburg National Battlefield Park,” African American Historic Sites Database, accessed September 25, 2017, http://aahistoricsitesva.org/items/show/333.
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