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[117]

Men who faced death if captured officers of the ninety-second United States colored infantry When Negro troops were enrolled in the Union army and President Lincoln issued his preliminary proclamation of emancipation, President Davis decreed that slaves captured in arms against the Confederacy (and their white officers) should not be treated as prisoners of war but should be delivered to the States to be punished according to State laws. If this decree had been carried out, these officers might have suffered the penalty of death on the charge of inciting Negro insurrection. The Ninety-second United States Colored Infantry was organized April 4, 1864, from the Twenty-second Corps d'afrique Infantry of New Orleans. These photographs were taken by Lytle at Baton Rouge, Louisiana, just before the disastrous Red River campaign in which the regiment took part.

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