A Wisconsin soldier recounts the removal of a slave's iron collar
In 1862, members of the 4th Wisconsin infantry, camped near Baton Rouge, Louisiana, removed an iron collar from the neck of escaped slave Old Steve. Old Steve's master had placed the collar around his neck as punishment for mingling with Union soldiers. Years later, John T. Perry, a soldier in the 4th Wisconsin, recalled the story of Old Steve to his son Herbert S. Perry. Herbert Perry's transcript includes a letter explaining the origin of the story as well as a conciliatory note about the some of the racist overtones.
There is a Lesson Plan based in part on this document.