ALPHARETTA, Ga. – On Tuesday, Aug. 26 at Alpharetta City Hall at 7 p.m., the American Heritage Society of Georgia will present another historical and educational program for the communities of North Fulton by honoring the 150th anniversary of the Civil War with “The melting pot of our Southern Black Heritage . . . What are their true stories? Their influence and their role.”
As part of the Understanding the Foundation of America series, the program will honor the untold true stories of the melting pot of black heritage from the Old South as told by Charles Kelly Barrow, author, editor and historical researcher of “Black Confederates,” “Black Southerners in Confederate Armies” and “Georgia’s Confederate Counties.”
Little has been written about the military role of African Americans in military campaigns of the United States despite the fact that men and women of color were involved in all national conflicts beginning with the Revolutionary War. Indeed, the thought of black men and women serving the Confederacy during the Civil War is difficult for some to believe, because it appears to be a paradox. Yet the surviving narratives, writings of black and white Civil War veterans and their family members, county histories, military records, narrative reminiscences, newspaper articles, personal correspondence and recorded tributes to black Confederates, offer historical information that irrevocably demonstrates they did serve the Confederacy as soldiers, bodyguards, sailors, construction workers, cooks and teamsters.
These brave men and women served what they considered their country and fought to restore honor to the fallen among them. It is a legacy shared by all Southerners, regardless of their skin color.
Barrow became interested in the Civil War after hearing stories about his ancestors. His desire was to research and write about black Confederates in order to educate people about an aspect of Southern history that had been overlooked. By enlightening people about black heritage, he hopes to prevent critics from attacking America’s Southern heritage and glean from what it gave us in building the foundation of America.
Barrow, now commander in chief of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, a heritage organization for men whose ancestors fought in the Civil War, also authored “Sons of Confederate Veterans and Georgia Division: The First One Hundred Years 1896-1996, A Short History” and numerous articles and pamphlets on Southern history. He was born in Atlanta and raised in DeKalb County in the Tucker area. Barrow has served on the Shorter College Board of Trustees, as commissioner for the Georgia Civil War Commission, a vice president for the Pike County Historical Society and a commander for the Army of Tennessee Sons.
The American Heritage Society of Georgia provides historical and educational programs and celebrations every fourth Tuesday of each month at Alpharetta City Hall at 7 p.m. and is open to the public. The organization networks with other organizations, communities, cities, businesses, families and individuals as an all-volunteer unified group of like-spirited and civic-minded American citizens of all ages who have a passion in life to make a difference in their communities by sharing their talents and time in helping educate and restore America to its strong foundational principles.
The organization’s motto and mission statement is: “United we stand to repair, rebuild, restore and preserve the foundation of America as one for all, all for one nation under God . . . By living the golden rule of our American ancestors’ faith, life and family values.” For more information, visit http://www.americanheritagesocietyofgeorgia.com/.