Man explores history

YOUNGSTOWN – For several years, city resident Steffon Jones has done a one-man portrayal of black Civil War soldiers and also conducted cemetery tours to show where the local black soldiers have been buried.

One of the many black Civil War veterans buried in Youngstown is Thomas D. Johnson, son of the Roley Boggess Johnson. Johnson is buried at Oak Hill Cemetery.

Johnson was a bricklayer who worked for P. Ross Perry who built Rayen High School.

Johnson served in the Civil War and enlisted in 1864. He was part of Company A 127th U.S. Colored Troops in Pennsylvania and was discharged in 1865.

Jones said he tries to hold tours each summer at Youngstown cemeteries where the black soldiers are buried and noted Calvary Cemetery is where many of them are. His programs have been held at the Arms Family Museum.

“I hope I am able to educate the public of the black soldiers who lived here and what they did in their lives,” he said.