This photograph shows the men of the Independent Battery, U.S. Colored Light Artillery, positioned in front of the guard house at Fort Leavenworth.
This illustration from the March 14, 1863, issue of Harper’s Weekly magazine — titled “A Negro Regiment in Action” — depicts the Battle of Island Mound, Missouri, in October 1862.
Rosie Mason was a law enforcement trailblazer, working 39 years in the Kansas City Police Department and serving as its first African American female officer.
First Sergeant William A. Messley (also known as Measley) of Company C, 62nd United States Colored Troops, posed for this portrait shortly after his enlistment in late 1863.
The brief yet distinguished life of Wayne Miner was defined by sacrifice and valor. The son of former slaves, Miner was born in 1890 in Henry County, Missouri.
Maj. N. Clark Smith was a prominent musician, composer, and instructor and one of the most accomplished African American bandmasters of the early 20th century.
Cathay Williams was the first African American woman to enlist in the U.S. Army — in a time when women were prohibited from serving.