Augustus Saint-Gaudens’ magisterial Shaw Memorial (1900) honors Colonel Robert Gould Shaw and the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, one of the first regiments of African American soldiers formed during the Civil War (and portrayed in the 1989 film Glory). Although the soldiers’ heads are based on anonymous models, the men and women associated with the 54th are made known here through vintage photographs, letters, and the first Medal of Honor earned by an African American soldier. The Shaw Memorial and works by Lewis Hine, Richard Benson, Carrie Mae Weems, William Earle Williams, and Ed Hamilton embody the legacy of the 54th Massachusetts. And a roster of some 1,600 soldiers from the 54th specifies personal data when known, including rank and fate at the Battle of Fort Wagner.
228 pages | 137 color images | 9.5 x 11 inches