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Uncommon Valor: A Story of Race, Patriotism,…

Uncommon Valor: A Story of Race, Patriotism, and Glory in the Final… (2006)

by Melvin Claxton, Mark Puls

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"With the air of intimacy that only comes from intensive research, Uncommon Valor vividly shows us the contributions made by escaped slaves, ex-slaves, and freemen to the Union cause." --Gene Smith, author of Lee and Grant Christian Fleetwood had mixed feelings about America, and America had mixed feelings about him. As a free twenty-three-year-old black man living in Baltimore, with the Civil War raging, he understood well all that was worrisome and all that was inspiring in his war-torn country. A few days after Gettysburg, as his hometown was flooded with horribly wounded soldiers, Fleetwood made a momentous and patriotic decision. He enlisted. Uncommon Valor tells the powerful story of how Sergeant Fleetwood and his fellow "colored" troops overcame oppression, suspicion, derision, and a ceaseless torrent of Confederate gunfire to overrun a heavily fortified rebel position against impossible odds. For outstanding bravery and devotion beyond the call of duty, Fleetwood and thirteen of his comrades were awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. Based on personal diaries, letters, and other firsthand accounts, this riveting tale takes you deep into the heat of battle and beyond, as these heroic soldiers are forced to fight two wars at once--one against the enemy, the other against their own white commanders and fellow troops. The Civil War produced hundreds of heroes and thousands of thrilling accounts of their brave and glorious deeds. None is more moving, compelling, or inspiring than Uncommon Valor.… (more)



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Melvin Claxtonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Puls, Markmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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To my mother, who taught me to read, and my father, who showed the benefits of being well read.

--Melvin Claxton
To my parents, Gerald and Sheron Puls, who gave me my faith and taught me to love history

--Mark Puls
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A war that can pit brother against brother can also pit a man against his most deeply held beliefs.  (Prologue)
On July 6, 1863, three days after the terrible fighting at Gettysburg, Christian Fleetwood saw the gaunt, soiled faces of the defeated, walking as shattered men through his hometown of Baltimore.  (Chapter 1)
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The bell tolls : a call for Black troops

Christian Fleetwood enlists

The first mission

Ready and willing : the Cincinnati Brigade

Hunting guerillas and bushwhackers in North Carolina

Early skirmishes : raids on Richmond

Avenging an ambush

To the front : storming Petersburg

The fog of war : the Petersburg mine explosion

The price of honor : heroics at New Market Heights

The war ends.
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