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tv   1944 Documentary The Negro Soldier  CSPAN  December 31, 2014 11:35pm-12:21am EST

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every saturday at 4:00 p.m. here on american history tv on c-span 3. and follow us on twitter at c-span history. connect with us on facebook where you can leave comments and check out our upcoming programmings at our website, the c-span cities tour takes book tv and american history tv on the road, traveling to u.s. cities to learn about their history and literary life. this weekend we partnered with time warner cable for a visit to austin, texas. we are in the private suite of lyndon and lady bird johnson. this is private quarters. i mean that. this is not part of a tour offered to the public. this has never been open to the public. you're seeing it because of c-span's special access.
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vips come into this space just as they did in lyndon johnson's day. but it's not open to our visitors on a daily basis. and the remarkable thing about this space is it's really a living, breathing artifact. it hasn't changed at all since president johnson died in january 1973. there's a document in the corner of this room signed among others, the the then archivist of the united states and lady bird johnson telling my predecessors, myself and my successors that nothing in this room can change. >> so we're here at the 100 block of congress avenue in austin. to my left just down the block is the river, the colorado river. and this is an important historic site in the city's history because this is where waterloo, austin's predecessor, was. it consisted of a cluster of cabins occupied by four or five
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families, including the fame of jay carol. i'm standing about the same spot where the the cabin was, and this is where lamar was staying when he and the rest of the men got wind of this big buffalo herd incentive. so he and the other men jumped on their horses. congress avenue, it wasn't really the avenue, but in those days just a muddy ravine that led north to where the capitol now sits. the men galloped on their horses and rode into this herd of buffalo shouting. and shot this enormous buffalo. from there he went to the top of the hill where the the capitol is and told everybody this should be the seat of the future empire. >> watch all of our events from austin saturday at noon eastern on c-span 2's tv and sunday afternoon at 2:00 on c-span 3 american history tv. each week american history
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tv's reel america brings you archival films to take you on a journey through the 20th century. produced by frank capra, the negro soldier is a 1944 documentary intended to encourage african-americans to enlist in the u.s. army during world war ii. the film traces the history of african-american contributions to society, during war and peace. beginning with the revolutionary war, then showing their work as teachers, judges, scientists, artists, musicians, athletes, and soldiers. in 2011, this 40-minute film was chosen to be preserved in the national film registry of the library of congress and was recently restored by the national archives.
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♪ ♪ ♪
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♪ ♪ the joy of my soul ♪ ♪ since jesus came into my heart >> thank you, soldier. my prepared text today was to have been make thy name be remembered in all generations. i think i'm going to depart from my prepared sermon. while i was listening to the sergeant's solo, i kept looking up at our service flag.
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i was thinking of the men who serve us. i see some of them here this morning. private roberts, sergeant jackson. lieutenant carter. and -- and -- >> private parker. first class. >> first class is right. i was over at the uso the other night and i met somebody i hadn't seen in quite a long time. the last time i saw this man, well, one of my members treated me to a ticket to yankees stadium to see joe lewis. versus max mailing. in 1:49 an american fist won a
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victory. but it wasn't the final victory. no, that victory is going to take a little longer and a whole lot more american fists. now those two men that were matched in the ring that night are matched again. this time in a far greater arena and for much greater stakes. max is a paratrooper from the nazi army, men turned into machines challenging the world. joe louis training for the fight of his life. this time it's a fight not between man and man but between nation and nation. it's a fight for the real championship of the world. the to determine which way of life will survive. their way or our way. this time we must see to it that
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there is no return engagement. for the stakes this time are the greatest men have ever fought for. and what are the stakes? the american stakes. the german stakes. the bible of the nazis. the gospel according to hitler. i'm not going to read all of this. but there are one or two things in this book that will interest you. i quote, what is denied to us, the german fist must take. if our forefathers had made their decisions by the same pacifist nonsense as the present day does, we would possess about a third of our existing territory. further, he says, from time to time, the illustrative papers show how a negro has become a lawyer, a teacher, perhaps even a minister. it never dawns on the degenerate middle class america that this is truly a sin against all reason.
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that it is criminal madness to train a born half ape to one believes one has made a lawyer of him. this book was written 20 years ago. the plan which it foreshadowed has become a reality. and the nazis now instruct their disciples in terms such as these. we must strive by any means to conquer the world. any methods are permissible. lie, betray, kill. kill and kill again. kill the slobs, the russians, the pols, the czechs. don't stop, whether you have an old man, a woman, a girl, or boy. kill. we want to create our great german empire. we must exterminate everybody who stands against us. the liberty of the whole earth
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depends on the outcome of this contest. americans have always guarded liberty. the seed took root in boston. in that city is the granary burial ground, 1660. within this grounds are buried the victims of the boston massacre, march 5th, 1770. the first to die in the boston massacre was christmas adams. the longest freedoms calls the wise contend, dear to all the country, shall your fame extend, while to the world, the letters stone shall tell, where coldwell maddox, gray, and maddock fell.
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he shot the fire heard round the world on bunker hill, june 17th, 1775, gun belong to peter salem, a colored man who carried it, conquered and with it shot a major. and on christmas day 1776, when all but the bravest hearts had lost hope, prince whipple took his place alongside those who pushed on. in the winter of '78 at valley forge, george washington wrote our soldiers have been a week without food. they are naked and starving. we cannot enough admire their unshakable patience and loyalty. here's samuel payne. thousands of others left their bleeding footprints in the snow. in this war the people of the new world won their independence. they joined hands and 13 colonies became the united states. then the new republic began to
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build. together they pioneered. together they make territories into states. by 1812 a wilderness was becoming a great nation. then came war. at lake erie, tyler thompson heard the admiral's words. we have met the enemy, and they are ours. and in new orleans, when general jackson said they shall not sleep on our soil, thomas wilson was there. america began to feel a shift. then came 1861. the government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from this earth.
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with malice towards none, with charity for all. then america began to rebuild. ♪ ♪ ♪ i've been working on the railroad ♪ ♪ all the live long day ♪ hello, boss. hello, frank. >> what's the matter, jim? you're quitting. >> man, i'm going to houston. yeah, with the ninth regiment. horses. >> jim fought in the spanish-american war in santiago, cuba, the 24th and 25th infantry, headed for new medal, courage. >> i'm jim. after we cleaned up in cuba, we went on with building factories, cities, everything.
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as for me, well, i went to panama. to get a job. a little job connecting the atlantic and pacific. a little job. ♪ ♪ and in france, jim wasn't there. but his sons were. serving with the 813th pioneer regiment near marseilles. the 332nd battalion and eighth
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pioneer regiment. fighting with the eighth illinois on the swason front. 371st at busey farm. the 369th in the argonne. 369th fought on the line of fire for 191 days. not a man ever captured, not a foot of ground ever lost. the first american troops to receive the corps deguerre, the 369th. and for action above and beyond the call of duty, many received honored medals. when they cleaned up in france, the boys came marching home. ♪ ♪ among them was henry johnson,
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one companion roberts, killed for and captured 28 germans for which the french nation decorated them for exceptional bravery. and there were those among the honored at arlington, samuel washington, walter watters, william fox, john simms, young, charles young, colonel, united states army. and to their memory, sermons in stone and bronze, tributes of a grateful nation, to commemorate the heroism and sacrifice of all colored soldiers who served in the various wars engaged in by the united states of america, but a lasting record shall be made of their unselfish devotion to duty. and in france, at busey farm,
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the french people erected a memorial to the 371st infantry. this stone and the ground on which it stands are dedicated to the negro troops who fought and died here on april 21st, 1918. 23 years later on june the 15th, 1941, an invading german army. >> yes, the nazis destroyed our monuments in france, but our monuments here stand and will always stand. the founder of tuskegee institute, booker t. washington, 1856-1915. he lifted the veil of ignorance from his people and pointed the way to progress through education and industry. the late george washington carver, honored in the chemistry of agriculture and the men and women building the monuments of tomorrow. law. elected judge in new york city courts serving his second ten-year term. explorer. the only other american with
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admiral perry when our flag was planted at the north pole. medicine. leading new york city surgeon. father of the blues. publisher. contributing to the war bond drive. education. principal of a new york city public school. curator schaumburg collection of literature. international prize-winning sculptor. singer. ♪ ♪ men and women in every walk of life, all trained and educated in schools like -- ♪ howard ♪
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♪ hampton will shine ♪ all down the line ♪ ♪ will shine ♪ ♪ when the sun goes down ♪ ♪ and the moon comes up ♪ ♪ ours will shine ♪ ♪ our boys will shine ♪ >> olympic games have begun. the best athletes in the world have come to berlin, and 51 nations are represented here today. >> the six fastest sprinters in the world are getting ready. owens, america, voshmyer, germany and metcalf. of america. who is it ahead? roosevelt challenges, metcalf comes up but owens wins in 10.3.
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second, metcalf america. >> men's high jump. ryan katz, germany. they all drop out. and japan. and he drops out, too. 203 meters high at 6'8". johnson of america. johnson of america, a new olympic record of 6'8". second, america. third, america.
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>> the tree of liberty have born these fruits. it's a mighty tree with roots deep in the ground of america. its fame has spread to the four corners of the earth. men of every faith, color and tongue have helped to nourish it and to sow its seed in new ground. all men stand in admiration of it except -- the nazis, the fascists and the japanese militarists. the new order. there is not a man alive who does not know of the crime of these adventurers. in europe. by order of the german army high command, thousands of innocent
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men, women and children have been shot and hanged. in asia, the japanese army -- ♪ ♪ there are those who will tell you that japan is the savior of the colored races. on december 7th -- ♪ ♪
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>> the people of the world have risen in one great mass to bring to justice the ringleaders responsible for these crimes. in america's army in every branch of the service, artillery, tank, quartermaster, engineer -- >> don't forget the infantry. >> yes? >> my boy's in the infantry. he's up there. third from the left on the bottom row. i got a letter from him last night. he's an officer. >> robert? did he get to be an officer?
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>> yes. he said so right here. dear momma, at last it's happened. i'm an officer. lieutenant robert a. bronson, infantry. don't it sound good? of course i haven't got my bars yet, but i'm on my way to officers candidate school for four months, and if i pass the examination and graduate and get my commission, i'll be an officer. now, i can do it, momma. if i could go through those first 13 weeks the way i did, i can go through anything. that morning at the railroad depot, i didn't know which side was up, but misery sure loves company. when i said good-bye to you, i was laughing, but i wasn't tickled.
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♪ and the first thing i heard when i stopped at some place in the middle of no place -- ♪ >> all right, men, on behalf of the united states army, the reception center here at this camp, we're glad to welcome you here today and into the united states army. camp, we're glad to welcome you here today and into the united states army. we're glad to see all of your happy, smiling faces. fellows, during the first new days you'll be with us here at this camp, you'll be converted from a civilian into a full-fledged soldier. you'll be interviewed by someone who will inquire into your past life before you came into the army. >> machinist on construction of gun and gun pocks. >> that's right. >> what machines did you
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operate? >> i operated boring mills tool grinders, tool pressers, planes and -- >> fall in! >> forward. hut, hut hut. pick it up, pick it up! >> company halt. >> fall out. >> i don't want to give you the impression it's only for religious services and advice that you can come to the chaplain. you can come to him at any time. for example, if you g pl in trouble with your girlfriend and she doesn't write you anymore, you want to know how to propose, why, just come see the chaplain and he'll give you some advice. or if if you get in trouble with your first sergeant, you want to know how to handle him, just come around and see the chaplain and he'll give you some advice. or if you're financially embarrassed, that's simple, too. just come around and see the chaplain and he'll give you some advice. >> our chaplain has just told you how to get along in this man's army. it's my painful duty to tell you what will happen to you if you don't get along.
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regarding the salute men. it isn't a form of civility. it's merely a form of recognition used between members of the military service. the average man when he first learns the salute is awkward. it's a strange gesture to him and he feels shy. he usually sneaks his hand up in this manner and gives a broken-handed salute or lowers his eyes gently and salutes like that. when you salute an officer bring your hand up to your forehead in a manly manner. make sure your thumb is alongside your hand because if it's out here they may misconstrue it. then cut the hand to the side. don't let it drop down like a dead fish. >> about face. >> sit down. tut your feet in the machine. 10 1/2. put your foot in here.
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stand up now. pick up both weights. put the weights back. sit down. step down put your shoes on and go in the next room. next. >> fall in! >> men put every piece of civilian clothing you have into that bag. now, when you're completely stripped and have everything in that bag, put on a set of summer underwear, a pair of shorts, a pair of white woollen socks. try on your green herringbone brim hat. if it fits, place it in your barracks bag. don't mind if it's a little loose. >> but i made it. we all made it. they put us through so many twists and turns. we didn't know whether we were coming or going. but uncle sam did. we were going. we put us on the train that same afternoon for the replacement center.
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he can kept passing troop trains going back and forth all over the country. we finally arrived at a place called military secrets. but this much i can tell you, it was cold. and even before we had a chance to thaw out, they had us in the school of the soldier. the sergeant gave it to us straight. >> you sleep in that bed, you'll make it. you wear them clothes, you'll wash it. you walk on that floor, you'll clean it. there's no service here. you understand that? >> and i bet right now, momma, i can make a bed better than you can. but before i have a chance to get the bed warm there i was, in the beginning the new hands were all feet. >> right face. forward, hut. to the left, hut. left mraing forward. right plank, forward.
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left forward. left forward. hup hup hup. left forward. left mraing forward. right plank forward. left forward. left forward. left forward. hut, hup hut hup. >> then came the cross-country marching. >> halt. take a ten-minute break. >> fall out. >> it was tough. hiking drilling tent pitching general orders, the tougher the day, the shorter the night. but you get used to it. and if you can't take it they've got doctors. some of the best in the country. specialists in every field. and in our dental clinic, we have a -- but even sew, this is one kind of drilling no soldier likes.
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but after all the making beds and peeling potatoes and drilling and marching they give you a rifele and teach you to shoot it. in no time at all, i could hit the broadside of a barn. it was fun. it's not all work. there's football baseball boxing and oh yes, ping pong. if you want to read, there's a library. can you imagination me listening to poetry? but it came in good. the very next day i got a chance to use it. we were sent on a detail to a nearby camp. i saw some soldiers that was beautiful to behold. >> hut. forward hut. hut two three, four. hut, two, three, four. hut, hut. hut, two, tree, four.
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left face. >> and you'd better tell uncle everett to quit joking about the wics because these girls have gotten to know trucks better than he'll ever know. the next day was saturday night. ♪ >> shupz have you news accidents are of are are of. she was very nice. a real apple girl. just the right size. just the kind you like. but in the army, man proposes and g.i. disposes. >> fall out! >> and the next morning i was out there like the rest of them. getting tough.
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in this man's army, they want you to be tough. tough, and i mean tough. a toughened army means a good fighter who can strong up to an enemy and beat him to the draw. and after a hard week, a soldier welcomes a sunday. ♪ holy holy holy ♪ ♪ >> this morning i have a g.i. report. i think you'll all be interested in. this is an official statement from the war department. in the present world war, there are more than five times as many men with high school education in our armed forces than were in world war i. this has meant an increase in officer candidates.
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official figures tell us in the present war, there are three times as many colored officers as in world war i. from a score of different schools, many have earned their commissions and taken their place alongside those who come from any one of the rotc schools and the greatest of all military institutions, west point. >> momma the next time you see me, i'll be wearing an officer's uniform. getting ready to get in there and get this war over with. that's a promise. your loving son, robert. >> thank you, mrs. bronson. that's a promise millions of americans have made, thousands have put it into action. and every camp, men are getting their final workout.
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at tuskegee, more pilots are earning their wings. ♪ >> in a short while, these young officers will be full-fledged combat flyers. taking their place at the controls of our fighter planes. high above their native land they fly. what a surprise the nazis will get in black brown, yellow and white men, all americans land on the airfields of berlin and tokyo. in the far north, seasoned soldiers are toughening themselves, for they know in a fight that is all evil, truth must be ready. ready to strike hard and often.
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no waiting for weather or temperature. any weather can be good weather. any temperature can be right. when men know the meaning of their job and are determined to get it done. and the men we knew as tailors printers, bricklayers cooks entertainers carpenters, bell boys, school teachers, farmers are today soldiers in a modern army. tank men gunners radio operators and motor mechanics. every man schooled in the meaning of teamwork. every man qualified to replace any of his teammates at any time. every man ready to do his share. the engineers the fighting builders ready to build bridges highways railroads, ports,
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landing fields. quartermaster, who moves troops and supplies who provide food, fuel and clothing. the men who supply the means of communication, telegraph, telephone and radio. the cavalry ready to patrol, scout, harass.v@ the tank destroyer ready for swift and decisive action. hard-hitting anti-aircraft, ready to knock zeros and messerschmitts out of the skies.
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and the infantry men, the backbone of the army. this training has met the acid test of war. across the pacific across the atlantic, the shadow of defeat hangs over the axis partners as the allies liberate town after town. but the job isn't finished. this is only the beginning. to win the final victory over germany and japan our blows must be dealt harder and faster and with all our strength, there can be no letup in the false
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supplies. more and more food equipment and ammunition must reach our troops in the battle areas. more airports, landing fields, docks, bridges and roads must be built. our troops must build them through the swamps of the south pacific. the snows of the far north. over the mountains of india and across the rivers of europe. build them in record time. and under enemy fire. build them right into the heart of berlin and tokyo.
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♪ ♪
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robert brooks, collin kelly meier lavigne dori miller soldiers who knew no fear. men who would defend even unto death the land of their burden, soldiers who believed in this great country. to the enemy, our country is something to destroy our homes, our right to worship god, our little belongings. something to crush to shackle, to plunder. oh, god, we thank you for this land which our fathers have helped to build. grant that we may with your help be worthy of this heritage.
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and in our turn, enrich it for our children. so that government of the people by the people, for the people, shall not perish from this earth. ♪ soldiers marching off to war!+svñ ♪ ♪ with the light of freedom going on before ♪ ♪ ♪ when the nation calls on men to march ♪ ♪ our men are tired and blue ♪ ♪ come and so will you ♪
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♪ when you hear them pounding down the land ♪ ♪ on the plains ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ in the battle of jericho jericho ♪ ♪ march to the battle of jericho ♪ ♪ when the walls come tumbling down ♪ ♪ my country tis of thee this land of liberty ♪ ♪ of thee i sing jj ♪
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you've been watching a special presentation of our reel america series. join us every sunday at 4 p.m. eastern for more archival industries. watch as these films take you on a journey through the 0th century. that's reel america every sunday at 4 p.m. eastern here on on american history tv. on c-span3. and we'd like to tell you about some of our other american history programs. join us every saturday at 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. eastern for a special look at the civil war. we'll bring you to the battlefields, let you hear from scholars and re-enact tors and bring you the latest historical forum on the subject. again, that's programs on the civil war every saturday at 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. eastern on american history tv. we'd like to hear from you. follow us on twitter twitter @cspanhistory, connect on facebook at
12:20 am and check out our upcoming programs at our website, each week american history tv's reel america brings you archival films that help tell the story of the 20th century. ♪ ♪ >> remember this? this was france august


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