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African American Soldiers in the Spanish-American War
12023-05-09T07:03:58-04:00Amardeep Singhc185e79df2fca428277052b90841c4aba30044e12131plain2023-05-09T07:03:58-04:00Amardeep Singhc185e79df2fca428277052b90841c4aba30044e1An estimated 2500 African American soldiers fought in the Spanish-American War, which led to Cuban independence and Puerto Rico becoming a U.S. territory. The war was initiated by rebels on both islands who wanted independence from Spain. The battle being described here, the Battle of San Juan Hill, took place in Cuba in 1898.
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12023-06-07T10:09:02-04:00Amardeep Singhc185e79df2fca428277052b90841c4aba30044e1Lucian B. Watkins, "Anita" (1907)3plain2023-08-09T10:07:58-04:00Miranda Alvareze4b0ac9c6831fb6f5de18f217683898023302dae
Among the sick and wounded ones, This stricken soldier boy lay, With glassy eye and shortened breath; His life seemed slipping fast away. My heart grew faint to see him thus, His dark brown face so full of pain, I wondered if the mother's eyes Were looking for her boy in vain.
I bent to catch his feeble's words: "I am so ill and far from home. I feel so strange and lonely here; You seem a friend, I'm glad you've come.
"I want to tell you how our boys Went charging on the enemy. 'Twas when we climbed up Juan's hill; And there we got the victory.
"The Spaniards poured a heavy fire; We met it with a right good will. We saw the Seventy-first fall back, And then our boys went up the hill.
"Yes, up the hill, and gained it, too; Not one brave boy was seen to lag. Old Glory o'er us floating free, We'd gladly died for that old flag."
His dim eye brightened as he spoke; He seemed unconscious of his pain; In fancy on the battlefield He lived that victory o'er again.
And I; I seemed to grasp it, too,– The stalwart form, the dusky face Of those black heroes, climbing up To win fair glory for their race.
The Spaniards said that phalanx seemed To move like one black, solid wall; They flung defiance back at Death, And, answering to that thrilling call,
They fought for Cuban liberty. On Juan's hill those bloody stains Mark how these heroes won the day And added honor to their names.
March on, dark sons of Afric's race, Naught can be gained by standing still; Retreat not, 'quit yourselves like men And, like these heroes, climb the hill,
Till pride and prejudice shall cease; Till racial barriers are unknown. Attain the heights where over all, Equality shall sit enthroned.