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Godfrey Weitzel (1835–1884) was a German immigrant and a skilled Union general. He began his military career as an engineer and later he and his company served as President Lincoln’s bodyguards during the first inauguration. As he became more well-known, in 1864 he took up command of the 25th Corps, the first army corps made up entirely of Black troops. In April of 1865, Weitzel and his troops fought at the Fall of Richmond. Weitzel sent a telegram to General Grant: "We took Richmond at 8:15 this morning. I captured many guns. The enemy left in great haste. The city is on fire in two places. Am making every effort to put it out. The people received us with enthusiastic expressions of joy." Weitzel welcomed Lincoln at his field headquarters—Jefferson Davis’ presidential residence—when the president visited the city following its capture.
- Godfrey Weitzel
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