After Confederates shelled Fort Sumter on April 12, 1861, President Abraham Lincoln called for volunteers to restore order. Many northerners responded and rushed to create volunteer regiments. Yet when African Americans offered to serve, northern officials turned them down. After Ohio Governor William Dennison denied a request, the Cleveland Herald called his decision “eminently proper.” While the Herald did not want to “impugn the motives of those…who wish to raise military companies,” the editor believed that “the enlistment of colored troops would dampen, if not kill, the ardor of the masses now rushing to arms.” The Herald was also concerned that such action “would embitter the present contest and render utterly hopeless any prospect of peace.” Two years later, however, the War Department authorized the creation of the United States Colored Troops. Within months new USCT regiments were participating in battles, including those at Milliken’s Bend and Fort Wagner. The Cleveland Herald joined other northern newspapers which changed their editorial stance on African Americans in the military and even supported the call for USCT troops to receive pay equal to white soldiers. After Congress passed the necessary legislation in 1864, the Herald noted that “this simple act of justice has been quite too long delayed.” Joseph T. Glatthaar’s Forged in Battle: The Civil War Alliance of Black Soldiers and White Officers (1990), Howard C. Westwood’s Black Troops, White Commanders and Freedmen During the Civil War (1992), and John David Smith’s Black Soldiers in Blue (2002).