COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – The National Veterans Memorial and Museum honored the pioneering soldiers of the United States Colored Troops (USCT) on Sunday.

These men fought in some of the most important battles in the Civil War such as Antietam and Gettysburg, playing an integral role in the Union victory.

The events highlighted the contributions the troops made to the war, and to lesser-known history as well.

There were musical performances and descendants of the U.S. Colored Troops soldiers shared stories.

CEO of the veteran’s museum Michael Ferriter said events like Sunday’s are why the museum was built in the first place.

“The idea was that we should have a memorial museum that tells the stories of all veterans from all times and to be inclusive in that storytelling and that’s why today’s event is so awesome,” he said. 

One historian at the event noted that President Abraham Lincoln credited the USCT with a large part of the Union’s success.