Bazel Ciphas (blackunionsoldiers)

(b. circa 1842 – d. ?)

Twenty-three-year-old Bazel Ciphas enlisted in Montgomery County with the Maryland Volunteer Infantry on March 22, 1864. He had left his place of enslavement on Ulysses Griffith’s farm near Unity. Colonel Samuel M. Bowman mustered him into service on March 24, 1864 in Baltimore with Company B of the newly-formed 39th Regiment. The regiment fought in battles that included Petersburg, Spotsylvania Court House, and the Crater. Like many soldiers in the regiment, Bazel Ciphas had to pay $6.00 for his musket and other supplies when he received his final pay on June 30, 1865. In 1890 his widow, Mary E. “Cephas” applied for a pension.

Ciphas’s name is among the 209,145 names listed on the African American Civil War Memorial in Washington, D.C. His name appears as “Bazil Cephas” on plaque C-53 on the Wall of Honor.