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date: 24 November 2020

Rolac, John locked

(1842–23 Sept. 1864),
  • Juanita Patience Moss

Extract

slave, Union soldier, and Andersonville prisoner, was born in Windsor, North Carolina, to unknown parents. His surname sometimes appears as Rolack. His physical description was that of a man five feet six inches tall with hazel eyes, brown hair, and a light complexion. Though historians have done much to illuminate the roles of black soldiers in black regiments, the U.S. Colored Troops (USCT), little has been done to document the experience and contributions of those who served with white regiments.

When Union regiments penetrated the Southern states to blockade Confederate access to the Atlantic coast for the exchange of cotton and tobacco for European guns and ammunition slaves began to abscond from nearby towns and plantations to seek out the Union troops whose presence promised freedom Not satisfied with being merely paid laborers behind Yankee lines some contrabands like Rolac chose to enlist in the Union army ...

A version of this article originally appeared in African American National Biography.

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