In 1863, after limitless debate and procrastination, Negro regiment at last became officially part of the Union Army -- the first colored soldiers in American history to be fully sanctioned by the Federal Government. This fact distinguished them from the cooks, orderlies, fortification laborers, etc., who had traditionally participated in American wars, and especially distinguished them from the many trained and armed Negroes who had fought sub road from soon after the outbreak of the Civil War. The Confederate use of Negroes for heavy manual tasks did much to above the Northern bias but perhaps the critical factor was the decision that states whose loyalty was uncertain would finally accept the Negro in uniform. The total number of Negro troops to serve the Union has been variously estimated from 100,000 to 00,000: over 60,000 perished of wounds or disease. Denied full pay and benefits, the Negroes nevertheless fought with outstanding courage and were everywhere respected for their powers of endurance. The merely curious may be overwhelmed by the excessive length of this record; the more serious will find its quality of temperate judgment pleasant; its value will be primarily for the library and the scholar.