James Davis was born about 1845 in Columbia, Pennsylvania.
During the Civil War, he served as a Private in Company D of the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, the first regiment in the United States made up entirely of enlisted men of color. He was about 18 years old, single and working as a porter when he enlisted on 19 March 1863 in Columbia, Pennsylvania. Mustered out 20 August 1865 with his regiment.
There is a James Davis working at a hotel in Lancaster, Pennsylvania in the 1863 city directory that might be a match.
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