Lest We Forget - African American Military History by Researcher, 
				Author and Veteran Bennie McRae, Jr.




  • Organized at Beaufort, South Carolina on January 31, 1863.

  • Attached to District of Beaufort, South Carolina, 10th Army Corps, Department of the South until January, 1864.

  • Assigned to Barton's Brigade, District of Hilton Head, South Carolina, 10th Corps to February, 1864.


Before Muster

  • Three Companies on Expedition along coasts of Georgia and Florida November 3-10, 1862

  • Spalding's, on Sapello River, Georga, November 7, 1862 (Co. "A").

  • Doboy River November 8, 1862.

Mustered into the Union Army January 31, 1863.

  • Duty at Beaufort, South Carolina and Port Royal Island until March, 1863.

  • Expedition from Beaufort up St. Mary's River in Georgia and Florida January 23-February 1, 1863.

  • Skirmish at Township, Florida  January 26, 1863.

  • Expedition from Beaufort to Jacksonville, Florida, March 6-10, 1863.

  • Occupation of Jacksonville March 10-31, 1863.

  • Camp Jackson March 10, 1863.

  • Operations near Jacksonville, Florida, March 23-31, 1863.

  • Skirmish near Jacksonville March 29, 1863.

  • Based at Beaufort, South Carolina until January, 1864.

  • Expedition up South Edisto River July 9-11, 1863.

  • Action, Williston Bluff, Pon Pon River, July 10, 1863.

  • Expedition to Pocotaligo, South Carolina, November 23-25, 1863 (Companies. "E" and "K").

  • Skirmish near Cunningham's Bluff  November 24, 1863.

  • Companies "C" and "K" at Hilton Head, South Carolina until September, 1863, then moved to Beaufort, South Carolina.

  • Companies. "A" and "F" moved to Hilton Head September, 1863, returning to Beaufort, South Carolina, October 2, 1863.

  • Regiment moved to Hilton Head, South Carolina, January, 1864.

  • Expedition to Jacksonville, Fla., February 6-8, 1864.

  • Designation of Regiment changed to 33rd U. S. Colored Troops February 8, 1864.

33rd Regiment, United States Colored Infantry

  • Organized February 8, 1864, from 1st South Carolina Colored Infantry.

  • Attached to U. S. Forces, Port Royal Island, South Carolina, 10th Corps, Department of the South, to April, 1864.

  • District of Beaufort, South Carolina, Department of the South, to July, 1864.

  • Folly Island, South Carolina, Northern District, Department of the South, to October, 1864.

  • 1st Separate Brigade, Department of the South, to March, 1865.

  • District of Savannah, Georgia, and Department of the South, to January, 1866.



  • Duty at Port Royal Island, South Carolina, District of Beaufort, South Carolina, until July, 1864.

  • Expedition to James Island, South Carolina, June 30-July 10, 1864.

  • James Island, South Carolina near Secessionville, South Carolina July 2, 1864.

  • Duty on Folly and Morris Islands, South Carolina operating against Charleston, South Carolina, to November.

  • Demonstration on Charleston Camp; Savannah Railroad, December 6-9, 1864.

  • Devaux's Neck December 6, 1864.

  • Tillifinny Station December 9, 1864.

  • Ordered to Folly Island December 9, 1864.

  • Near Pocotaligo Road December 20, 1864.

  • At Pocotaligo, South Carolina until February, 1865.

  • Occupation of Charleston, South Carolina until March 8, 1865.

  • Moved to Savannah, Georgia, March 8, 1865, and duty there until June 6, 1865.

  • Moved to Augusta, Georgia and duty there and at various points in the Department of the South until January, 1866. (NOTE: It was during this period when the regiment was assigned to the Freedmen's Bureau)

  • Mustered out January 31, 1866.

  • (Lieutenant Colonel Charles Tyler Trowbridge's farewell letter to the soldier written on February 9, 1866.)

    SOURCE: Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System



"The colored men fought with astonishing coolness and bravery. For alacrity in effecting landings, for determination, and for bush fighting I found them all I could desire--more than I had hoped. They behaved bravely, gloriously, and deserve all praise.

I started from Saint Simon's with 62 colored fighting men and returned to Beaufort with 156 fighting men (all colored). As soon as we took a slave from his claimant we placed a musket in his hand and he began to fight for the freedom of others.

Besides these men we brought off 61 women and children. We destroyed nine large salt-works, together with $20,000 worth of horses, salt, corn, rice,  which we could not carry away." Lieutenant Colonel  O. T. BEARD,  Forty-eighth New York Volunteers, Commanding Expedition, Beaufort, South Carolina, November 10, 1862.




"On the last expedition the fact was developed that colored men would fight behind barricades; this time they have proved, by their heroism, that they will fight in the open field. Captain Trowbridge aided me greatly. Captain Crandel of the Darlington, I found a trifling, childish pest. Captain Meriam, of the gunboat Madgie, rendered me valuable assistance." Lieutenant Colonel  O. T. BEARD,  Forty-eighth New York Volunteers, Commanding Expedition, Beaufort, South Carolina, November 22, 1862.





BEAUFORT, S.C., November 25, 1862.

SIR: I have the honor to inclose for your information the report of our expedition to Doboy River, Georgia:

The expedition was composed of three companies of the First South Carolina Volunteers (colored), under the command of Lieut. Col. Oliver T. Beard, Forty-eighth New York Volunteers, and was in every respect a success.

It gives me pleasure to bear witness to the good conduct of the negro troops. They fought with the most determined bravery. Although scarcely one month since the organization of this regiment was commenced, in that short period these untrained soldiers have captured from the enemy an amount of property equal in value to the cost of the regiment for a year. They have driven back equal numbers of rebel troops, and have destroyed the salt-works along the whole line of this coast.

Great credit is due to Lieutenant-Colonel Beard for his energy and skill in the management of this expedition.

I am, sir, with great respect, your obedient servant,



 Hon. E. M. STANTON,

Secretary of War.


SOURCE: United States War Department. THE WAR OF THE REBELLION: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1880-1901.

[33rd Regiment, United States Colored Infantry]

[South Carolina's United States Colored Troops in the Civil War]

[Freedom Fighters]





Category: Civil War | Subcategory: South Carolina | Tags: South Carolina , Georgia , Florida , Washington
Related Topics / Keywords / Phrases: 10th Corps, 1862, 1863, 1864, 1865, 1866, 1880, 1901, Charleston, Charleston (South Carolina), Civil War, Civil War Soldiers and Sailors, Edwin M. Stanton, Florida, Georgia, Jack, Jackson, Jacksonville, Jacksonville (Florida), Mary, New York, Railroad, Savannah, Savannah (Georgia), South Carolina, United States Colored Infantry, United States War Department, War Department,