Crew Aboard the USS Miami

The USS Miami, a U.S. Navy gunboat, had a significant number of African American crewmembers, as shown in this ca. 1865 photograph. The Miami operated in the Gulf of Mexico and the Mississippi River in 1862 and was transferred to the Atlantic theater for the majority of the Civil War. Unlike the U.S. Army, the Navy began the Civil War as an integrated service, with Black sailors sharing rations and living quarters with their white counterparts.

Courtesy of the U.S. Naval Historical Center