Shaw Biography

Although Shaw supported the idea of blacks in the military, his connection with African Americans had been more theoretical than actual, and he seems, at first, to have been surprised by the impressive soldiering abilities of his enlistees. The men's accounts reveal that respect and understanding grew steadily between this very demanding commander and his troops during their weeks of training.

Shaw died at age 26 with his troops on the parapet of Fort Wagner, South Carolina, on July 18, 1863.

Colonel Robert Gould Shaw, May 1863, photograph, Boston Athenaeum

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Massachusetts Fifty-fourthShaw Biography
IntroductionThe ArtistHistorical BackgroundThe Memorial and Its ConservationThe ExhibitionTeaching Resources

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