Lord Dunmore’s Ethiopian Regiment, composed of escaped slaves, was probably the first black regiment in the service of the Crown during the revolution. By December 1775 the regiment had nearly 300 blacks, including its most famous member, an escaped slave called Titus, then known as Tye. In later years, he became known as Colonel Tye as an honorary title for his military skills. The Ethiopian Regiment saw service from 1775 to 1776. Private Tye and his comrades believed that they were fighting not just for their own individual freedom but for the freedom of enslaved blacks in North America. Their regimental uniforms had sashes inscribed with the words, “Liberty to Slaves”.
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