You've likely heard the story of the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry Regiment and how the all-African American regiment led a valiant but unsuccessful assault on Fort Wagner, Morris Island, South Carolina, on July 18, 1863, during the American Civil War.

Sargent William H. Carney, born into slavery in Virginia, escaped and was one of more than 60 men to join the 54th Regiment in New Bedford. Carney was badly injured in the assault on Fort Wagner but rescued the flag before it hit the ground when the flag bearer went down. For this, Carney eventually received the Congressional Medal of Honor.

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There is a mural depicting the New Bedford muster on the side of the Freestones building in Downtown New Bedford.

There are many stories of bravery and heroism associated with the Civil War. One such story involved the 2nd Rhode Island Volunteer Infantry Regiment. Wikipedia says the regiment was "composed of volunteers from the State of Rhode Island that served with the Union Army in the American Civil War."

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The 2nd Rhode Island Volunteer Infantry Regiment was organized in 1861 in Providence. Wikipedia says, "The regiment was initially assigned to the IV Corps of the Army of Northeastern Virginia (later became the Army of the Potomac) and saw its first combat action at the First Battle of Bull Run at Manassas."

The 2nd Rhode Island Volunteer Infantry Regiment suffered heavy losses at Manassas.

While the 2nd Rhode Island Volunteer Infantry Regiment fought bravely at Manassas, it was involved in a number of other key battles of the Civil War, including Gettysburg.

A monument honoring the 2nd Rhode Island Volunteer Regiment was erected at Gettysburg.

A Guide to New Bedford's Memorial Tanks and Cannons

New Bedford has a large assortment of military hardware scattered throughout the city to honor various veterans organizations. See them all listed here.

LOOK: 100 years of American military history

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