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Teaching With Documents:
The Fight for Equal Rights: Black Soldiers in the Civil War

Frederick Douglass's Sons

Frederick Douglass's sons, Charles and Lewis, lived with him in Old Anacostia in Washington, DC, but traveled to Massachusetts to join the 54th Infantry in April 1863. According to his Company Descriptive Book, which is part of his compiled service record, Charles transferred to the 5th Massachusetts Cavalry to become its 1st sergeant. Lewis was the sergeant major of the 54th and was wounded in the assault on Fort Wagner, as is noted on his Regimental Descriptive Book. 
Detail of C. Douglass's Company Descriptive Book
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Detail of L. Douglass's Regimental Descriptive Book
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National Archives and
Records Administration
Compiled Service Records,
Records of the Adjutant General's Office,
1780's-1917, RG 94

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