Pride, Progress, and Prospects: The Marine Corps' Efforts to Increase the Presence of African-American Officersby Colonel Alphonse G. Davis
Military Academy at West Point. Prior to that period, a few individuals occasionally were admitted to the Naval Academy
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The representation of African-Americans in the officer ranks of the nation'sArmed Forces emerged as a matter of national interest at. the end of the Civil War. As early as 1866, there were efforts to admit African-Americans to the United States
Military Academy at West Point. Prior to that period, a few individuals occasionally were admitted to the Naval Academy only to leave later on their own
or as a result of the machinations of a racially biased system that reflected the nation's attitude and beliefs regarding race and racial equality.
Efforts during the 1970s and 1980s to increase the representation of African-Americans as officers in the military service were prompted by a number of interests pursuing the same end, but for different reasons. Militarily, there was a need for manpower. Socially, civil rights organizations saw the military as a means for pursuing one of the inherent rights of citizenship. Politically, presidential or other political aspirants garnered support in the form of backing and votes from civil rights organizations and their constituents.
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