From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Brown (Byrd), Calvin

Calvin Brown is listed in the National Archives as Calvin Byrd*; he changed his name after the Civil War. An enslaved man, he ran away from his owner in Louisville, KY on August 14, 1864,  then three days later enlisted in the 108th Infantry, Company A.

Brown fought in the Battle of Vicksburg in 1865; injured in that battle, he later became ill with an unrelated disease. In 1996, he and other African American Civil War soldiers were honored with the dedication of a national memorial site.

Calvin (Byrd) Brown was the great-grandfather of Mr. Shirley Foley, Jr.

For more see L. Wheeler, "The unseen soldiers get their due memorial to honor blacks who fought in Civil War," Washington Post, 9/3/1996, Metro section, p. B1.

*Last name also spelled Bird in some sources.

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Jefferson County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Louisville, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Item Relations

Cited in this Entry

NKAA Entry: Foley, Shirley, Jr.
NKAA Source: The Washington post (newspaper)

Related Entries Citing this Entry


Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Brown (Byrd), Calvin,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed April 15, 2024,

Last modified: 2023-07-21 18:30:20