This monument is also noteworthy because it is one of the few that explicitly acknowledges slavery as an important factor in the war. In wealthy, abolitionist Cambridge, it was perfectly acceptable to count emancipation among the war's positive outcomes.
The English version of this inscription, which appears on the other side of the monument's base, reads:
AMERICAN UNION PRESERVEDOn this Memorial Day, let us not forget the men, black and white alike, who fought for line #2.
AFRICAN SLAVERY DESTROYED
BY THE UPRISING OF A GREAT PEOPLE
BY THE BLOOD OF FALLEN HEROES
Obligatory disclaimer: Of course, I am not claiming that all Union soldiers were abolitionists. For many Northerners, line #1 was plenty of motivation. But for a large number, including the nearly 200,000 African-American soldiers, line #2 was pretty important.
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