Gettysburg Address Henry Gooding Analysis

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In this document, James Henry Gooding writes a letter to President Abraham Lincoln in September of 1863, with a complaint regarding his mistreatment and low pay as a soldier. Gooding, as well as his fellow soldiers, believe that they are being underpaid for the work that they are doing, but he first asks forgiveness for addressing the President. “…But the earnest solicitation of my comrades in arms besides the genuine interest felt by myself in the matter is my excuse, for placing before the Executive Head of the Nation our Common Grievance” (Gooding, 221). He continues by explaining that on the 6th of August, a man from the Department of Payment was sent to inform the soldiers that he would pay them $10 per month, but everyone in the regiment knew that he would never keep his word. Gooding goes on to argue, “…are we Soldiers, or are we…show more content…
We are fully armed, and equipped, have done all the various duties pertaining to a Soldier’s life…” (Gooding, 221). The blood of his fellow man has stained the ground that protected Union, so they deserve to be paid as equals to those of a lighter skin. Time after time, before and during the war, black men were refused the privilege to fight for their nation. Now that their country needs them most, the question remains as to why they are not equally treated and rewarded as others who fight for the same thing. “Now your Excellency, we have done a Soldier’s duty. Why can’t we have a Soldier’s pay?” (Gooding, 222). Whether or not they are freed slaves who were let go from their service for the war, they should still be paid the same for the same work. “We appeal to you, Sir, as the Executive of the Nation, to have us justly dealt with”
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