This organization was composed of the colored troops previously belonging to the Tenth and Eighteenth Corps, and which were consolidated for the purpose of forming an Army Corps composed entirely of black regiments. It was organized December 3, 1864, and Major-General Godfrey Weitzel was placed in command. It was composed of the divisions of Generals Kautz, Birney (Wm.), and Paine, containing in all 32 regiments of infantry and 1 of cavalry. Its returns for February, 1865, show a strength of 13,630--infantry, cavalry, and artillery, the latter carrying 56 guns.
On the 27th of March, 1865, Birney's (2d) Division accompanied the Army of the James --General Ord's command--on its march from the James River to Hatcher's Run, Kautz' (1st) Division remaining in the defenses of Bermuda Hundred. Birney's Division was present in the fighting at the fall of Petersburg, after which it joined in the pursuit of Lee's Army, and participated in the closing battle at Clover Hill, April 9th, the day of Lee's surrender.
In the meantime, Kautz' Division accompanied General Weitzel to Richmond, the colored troops of the Twenty-fifth Corps being the first to enter that city. In May, 1865, the corps accompanied General Weitzel to Texas, where it joined the Army of Occupation, and remained until January 8, 1866, when the corps was discontinued, it being the last corps mustered out. Many of the regiments had been previously mustered out in the summer and fall of 1865.
In addition to the list of battles belonging properly to the Twenty-fifth Corps, the colored regiments of that command had fought with honor at the Petersburg Assault, the Mine Explosion at Deep Bottom, Chaffin's Farm, Fort Gilmer, Darbytown Road, and Fair Oaks.
|Bermuda Hundred||Fort Fisher||Petersburg|
|Hatcher's Run||Fort Gregg||Fall Of Richmond|
|Rice's Station||Clover Hill||Appomattox|