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Elmira Prison Camp OnLine Library –

Submitted Information - Union Index - Union Troops - 127th U.S. Colored Troops

127th U.S. Colored Troops
Members of the 127th U.S. Colored Troops accompanied Col. Benjamin E. Tracy when he accepted the post of commandant of the Elmi4ra Prison camp. During the Civil War, there were several troops made up of African-Americans. The 127th was organized in Philadelphia, and they served as guards for the prison. This is supported by several references to them made by prisoners of the camp.

This regiment was formed from men enlisted and drafted in the State of Pennsylvania, to serve one, two, and three years. It was organized at Camp William Penn, Philadelphia, Pa., August 23 to September 10, 1864. (Camp William Penn was also the location for the organization of the 3rd, 6th, 8th, 22nd, 24th, 25, 32nd 41st, 43rd and 45th U.S. Colored Troops.)


The official army register of Colored Troops, shows that the only battle in which this regiment participated, was at Deep Bottom, and the only loss in killed and wounded it sustained, was one man, killed in this battle. It was sent with other troops to Texas, after the close of hostilities in the east, and was posted on the Mexican frontier.

On the 11th of September, 1865, it was consolidated into a battalion of three companies, and the men and officers whose term of service had expired, were discharged. The battalion was mustered out of service on the 20th of October. The muster-out rolls only of the consolidated companies were returned to the office of the Adjutant General, and consequently the records of the men who left the regiment before the close of its term, cannot be given.

Field and Staff officers of the 127th include: