Capt. Henry Simmons, 55th USCI

Chicago Daily Tribune
July 24, 1864

Our Colored Troops – A Vindication.
[Correspondence Chicago Tribune.]
HEADQUARTERS CO. A, 55TH U.S. COLORED
INFT’Y, FT. PICKERING, MEMPHIS, Tenn.,
July 19th, 1864.

In the Chicago Times of the 11th, and St Louis Democrat of the 16th, is an article entitled “Atrocities by Negro Troops,” copied from the Atlanta (rebel) Appeal, which does great injustice to the two colored regiments that accompanied Gen. Sturgis on his unfortunate expedition.

The correspondent of the Appeal wrote from Okalona, forty miles from the battlefield and on the statement of fugitives who fled before our army, and raised false reports to exasperate the rebel soldiers against colored troops

The writer of this note was constantly with the brigade from the time it left Memphis until it returned again, and does not know of a single instance when any woman was insulted or outraged by colored soldiers. Such conduct would have brought swift and speedy punishment upon them, by shooting or hanging. The colored soldiers are peaceable, gentle and submissive. Where colored soldiers commit one outrage, white soldiers commit a thousand.

Respectfully &c.

HENRY SIMMONS,
Capt. Co. A, 55th U.S. Colored Inf’y

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