An All-Black Unit That Fought Germany And Racism In WWI Gets Congressional Gold Medal

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Members of New York’s famous 369th Infantry Regiment wave as they come back home from France.

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National Archives

Children and adults line the streets in New York City for a parade welcoming the Harlem Hellfighters after the end of World War I.

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National Archives

When the Hellfighters left New York, they had been barred from participating in a military parade. When they returned, their white commander, Col. William Hayward, helped arrange a welcoming parade down Fifth Avenue in New York City.

Both chambers of Congress approved the commendation this summer, in a bipartisan effort that drew dozens of co-sponsors.

The measure’s main sponsors include Rep. Joyce Beatty, D-Ohio, who chairs the Congressional Black Caucus; along with Sen. Gillibrand and other members of New York’s delegation.

This story originally published in the Morning Edition liveblog.

  • New York
  • gold medal

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