A memorial to the black soldiers who fought in the Civil War was officially dedicated and opened in 1999 at10th and U Streets, in the heart of the Shaw neighborhood (named after Colonel Robert Gould Shaw, the white commander of the black 54th Massachusetts Regiment). The monument is the first to honor the black soldiers who fought in the volunteer units. The soldiers made up about ten percent of the Union Army, yet they were excluded from victory celebrations in Washington.
Designed by sculptor Ed Hamilton (www.edhamiltonworks.com), the centerpiece depicts uniformed soldiers and a sailor going off to battle while loved ones left behind bind together for support. The sculpture is surrounded by a Wall of Honor with the names of the 209,145 United States Colored Troops (USCT) who served in the Civil War.