The Union Colored Regiments from Massachusetts and Pennsylvania got their “Grand Review” November 14th 1865 in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Most Union troops paraded through Washington, DC on May 23rd and 24th 1865 in front of dignitaries and citizen in a “Grand Review of the Armies”. There were however about 180,000 soldiers missing, the United States Colored Troops.
The black soldiers who had served in regiments formed in Massachusetts and Pennsylvania gathered for a “Grand Review” of their own in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania November 14th 1865. A prominent resident and recruiter of Colored Troops, Thomas Morris Chester was the grand marshal for the parade. The troops marched through the main streets of Harrisburg; the capital of Pennsylvania, to the home of Senator Simon Cameron. Cameron, who was an abolitionist and advocate for raising black soldiers, delivered the speech in their honor. He said, “I cannot let this opportunity pass without thanking the African soldiers for the compliment they have paid me, but more than all to thank them for the great service which they have been to their country in the terrible rebellion. Like all other men, you have your destinies in your own hands, and if you continue to conduct yourselves hereafter as you have in the struggle, you will have all the rights you ask for, all the rights that belong to human beings.” There were letters read from those who couldn’t attend, including Union General Benjamin F Butler, who wrote, I “witnessed…[African American soldiers’] bravery and good conduct on the battle-field, and, above all, their devotion and unswerving loyalty to the flag and government.”
It was reported that about 7,000 Colored soldiers attended the “Grand Review”. It ended with a grand ball held for the soldiers.