Ink id'd cdv of Lieutenant Peter N. Sprague, Company A, 55th Massachusetts Infantry. The 55th was the sister regiment to the 54th Massachusetts Infantry, with both being comprised of black soldiers.
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"...A Proclamation by United States President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863 opened the way for the enlistment of free men of color and newly liberated slaves to fight for their freedom within the Union Army. As the ranks of the 54th Massachusetts quickly reached its full complement of recruits, an overflow of colored volunteers continued to pour in from several other states outside Massachusetts — many of whom simply had not arrived in time — prompting Governor John Albion Andrew to authorize yet another regiment of colored soldiers sponsored by the Commonwealth. Lieutenant Colonel Norwood P. Hallowell of the 54th Massachusetts was promoted to colonel and appointed commander of the 55th Massachusetts on May 30, 1863. Five companies of the 55th Massachusetts were mustered into service on May 31; two more companies were mustered in on June 15; and the last three on June 22....a speech delivered on March 21, 1863, the great abolitionist orator Frederick Douglass recounted how he had "...implored the imperiled nation to unchain against her foes, her powerful black hand." Under the leadership of Governor Andrew, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts took decisive action to do just that. Both the 54th and the 55th regiments were mustered in at Camp Meigs in Readville, Massachusetts, near Boston, and were trained there in that camp. The two regiments ultimately brigaded together, fighting and dying side by side during the campaign at Honey Hill, South Carolina, on November 30, 1864. It was from the 54th Massachusetts that officers Norwood Penrose Hallowell and Alfred Stedman Hartwell were promoted and mustered in as Colonel and Lieutenant Colonel, respectively, to lead the newly formed regiment, with Charles Barnard Fox of the 2nd Massachusetts Cavalry mustered in as major. Together with the 2nd and 3rd North Carolina Colored Volunteers (which later became renumbered as the 36th and 37th U.S. Colored Troops respectively), it was a part of "Wild's African Brigade" led by Edward A. Wild for much of the war...."