Guy Family Reunion 2024
Contraband Camp


 

 
.
.
.

Contraband was a term commonly used in the United States military during the American Civil War to describe a new status for certain escaped slaves or those who affiliated with Union forces. The Army (and the United States Congress) determined that the US would not return escaped slaves who went to Union lines and classified them as contraband. They used many as laborers to support Union efforts and soon began to pay them wages. The former slaves set up camps near Union forces, and the Army helped support and educate both adults and children among the refugees. Thousands of men from these camps enlisted in the United States Colored Troops when recruitment started in 1863. At war's end, more than 100 contraband camps existed in the South, including the Freedmen's Colony of Roanoke Island, where 3500 former slaves worked to develop a self-sufficient community.




The movie "FREE STATE OF JONES" is based partly on the 1862 Battle of Corinth and the Corinth Contraband Camp in Corinth, Mississippi. Baldy Guy, George Guy, and Henry Guy escaped from their slave plantation in Tuscumbia, Alabama and joined this Contraband Camp where they enlisted with the Union Army during the Civil War.

Many African-Americans who fled Southern plantations and farms seeking freedom and protection, found the Union-occupied Corinth to be a secure location. Union General Granville Dodge began to enlist these escaped slaves as teamsters, cooks and laborers. He actively recruited male refugees, armed them and placed them in charge of security at the newly organized camp in Corinth. Dodge's administrative efforts led to the formation of the 1st Alabama Regiment of African Descent, consisting of approximately 1,000 men.

The 1st Alabama Regiment of African Descent would later be renamed the 55th Regiment United States Colored Volunteer Infantry Troops. This is the Regiment that Baldy Guy (1841-1911), George Guy (1845-1928), & Henry Guy (1827-1902) fought in during the Civil War.

After surviving the 1862 Battle of Corinth during the Civil War, Newton Knight, a poor white farmer from Mississippi, leads a group of small farmers and local slaves in an armed rebellion against the Confederacy in Jones County. Knight subsequently marries former slave, Rachel. He establishes a mixed-race community, unique to the post-war South.

The movie comes out during the summer of 2016.

 


Contraband Camps developed around many union-held forts and encampments. In 1863, after the Emancipation Proclamation and authorization of black military units, thousands of former slaves and free blacks began to enlist in the United States Colored Troops.



























.
.
.