Civil War: 54th Massachusetts Song Analysis Worksheet

Grade Levels
7th - 10th
Resource Type
Formats Included
  • PDF
  • Google Apps™
3 pages
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Includes Google Apps™
The Teacher-Author indicated this resource includes assets from Google Workspace (e.g. docs, slides, etc.).


This worksheet for the US Civil War features an amazing song written in honor of William H. Carney's heroic actions. Carney was born into slavery, but escaped and served in the famous 54th Massachusetts Regiment.

There is an introduction proving background on Carney and the events surrounding his courageous actions to save the US flag during a deadly battle. Lyrics for the song are included, which were written by famous Harlem Renaissance poet James Weldon Johnson and others.

The worksheet features six questions in which students analyze the lyrics and reflect on their own interpretation.

An answer key and editable Google Doc version are both included for your convenience.

This resource pairs perfectly with the fantastic movie Glory, which depicts the 54th Massachusetts and the battle this poem describes. A great worksheet and guide for the movie can be downloaded here.

Both resources can also be downloaded as part of my Civil War and Reconstruction Unit Plan Bundle.

Thanks for checking them out!

Total Pages
3 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
30 minutes
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Determine a central idea of a text and analyze its development over the course of the text, including its relationship to supporting ideas; provide an objective summary of the text.
Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative, connotative, and technical meanings; analyze the impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone, including analogies or allusions to other texts.
Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.
Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas.
Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone.


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