Edward Black (1853-1871) of Indianapolis is believed to have been the youngest Civil War soldier. He enlisted as a drummer boy on July 24, 1861 in the 1st Regiment, 21st Indiana Volunteer Infantry. He was eight years and almost two months old. He carried this drum in the war. It was given to The Children's Museum of Indianapolis by his family members in 1970. About a year after Edward Black enlisted as a drummer boy President Lincoln abolished the regimental bands. During his service, Edward was reportedly held at Ship Island, Mississippi after being taken prisoner at the battle of Baton Rouge. Edward also reportedly reenlisted in 1862 when his father, George H. Black, joined the army and both served until the war's end. Edward presumably never fully recovered from the injuries and trauma he suffered, and he died a few years later shortly after his eighteenth birthday. He is buried in Crown Hill cemetery in Indianapolis.
The Children's Museum of Indianapolis
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Black, Edward, 1853-1871
United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865
Indiana -- Biography
Crown Hill Cemetery (Marion County, Ind.)
United States. Army. Indiana Infantry Regiment, 21st (1861-1863)
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