Major Martin Robinson Delany
Martin Robinson Delany was born free on the 6th of May 1812 in Charlestown, Virginia (modern day West Virginia ) to a mother also free, but to a father that was a slave. At the age of ten his mother fled the south up to Chambersburg Pa. with him and two other of his siblings because it was discovered they were able to read and write. At the age of nineteen, he moved to Pittsburg Pa.(1831-56) to study medicine, moving on to be one of the first three blacks to go to Harvard Medical School (1850).
He founded a black newspaper, “The Mystery”, and partnered with Fredrick Douglass in another, “The North Star”.(1846 – 49 ) He recruited for many U.S.C.T. regiments including the famed 54th Massachusetts. His acquaintances were many, including the raider/abolitionist John Brown and Maj.General Daniel E. Sickles of the Peach Orchard blunder at Gettysburg Pa. In February, 1865, he gained an audience with President Abraham Lincoln to pitch an idea to bring the war to an end sooner. As this meeting was in progress, the President was so impressed with Delany he commissioned him a major on the spot. He thus became the 1st black line officer in the U.S. Army and achieving the highest rank anycolored officer would reach during the Civil War.
Tim Hodge, Harrisburg Pa. went on a field trip to Gettysburg Pa when he was in the second grade and came home with a toy cannon, fake union currency, a union kepi, and a love for the American Civil War that is just as strong today as it was back then.
Tim Hodge can be contacted through this web site at firstname.lastname@example.org