Between 20 and 40 colonists of the approximately 4,000 who fought on the Battle Road on April 19, 1775, were African or Native American. By the end of the war, an estimated 5,500 African and Native American men had served on the colonial side. Many more served on the side of the British, particularly after the war moved south. Why would these men fight for a society that treated them as inferior? Why don't we hear more about this part of the story of the American Revolution?
In 1775, people across the spectrum of race and social status engaged in warfare to defend what was most dear to them. Life, Liberty, and Property, considered by people on both sides of the conflict to be the birthright of all British subjects, was a prize many would die for. For some, it was a right they would not willingly part with. For others, bound and enslaved, it was yet to be fulfilled. The American Revolution did not provide freedom for all, instead, it was just the beginning of a long struggle.