Commissioned Officers of the 54th Faces of the 54th

Item contributed by Massachusetts Historical Society

Peter Vogelsang, born in 1815 in New York, enlisted in the 54th at the age of 44 in April 1863. By the time of his discharge in 1865, Vogelsang had been promoted to First Lieutenant of Company H, one of a few Black commissioned officers to serve during the Civil War. In New York after the War, he became a member of the local G.A.R. Post as well as the New York African Society for Mutual Relief. For many years Vogelsang worked in the Custom House at the Port of New York, but he lost the position one year before his death in 1887 after Democratic President Grover Cleveland began purging Republican appointees from civil service jobs, including many Black appointees.

About item:

Copy photograph of carte de visite, originally taken circa 1863-1865, 8 cm x 5 cm.
From the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry Regiment photographs,
Photo 72.64.

View original digital record

Learn more about this: