Blacks portrayed in “Gods and Generals” movie – reportedly in a deleted scene on the Confederate side. As of this writing, I have not yet viewed this movie to verify the rumor. There was a scene of black men (most whom were slaves) in a Confederate camp sitting around campfire singing “Steal Away to Jesus”. One of black men had just been freed by his master who was killed in battle and he was to bring the remains back to his family. The discussions between the men revealed the life of black men during that period – decisions as to what to do with their lives (“wait & see” , runaway if not freed, join Union, head North to join runaway family). There was acknowledgement that the Civil War was an engagement between white men. Black slaves were caught up in the middle of the killing. Although one of the black men in this movie had just been freed, it appeared that his duty was not to the Confederate military, as his obligated presence ended with the death & safe return of his Master’s (Boss) remains to his family.
Slavery as an institution and especially the relationship between black slave and their master, was most peculiar during the Civil War on the Confederate side. Of most importance on a black man’s mind was his “FREEDOM” from slavery, even though the future of a slave or newly freed black man was uncertain. Very rare if any are there Civil War movies that show the participation of blacks on the Confederate side (freed or slave). It’s sort of like the rare sight of statues in the physical likeness of blacks for the South for that time period, even though the South had an overwhelmingly large black population.