Giving them Freedom and allowing them to join the Army may have worked in some locations but not others too. We will never know for sure because it was not done. I've got to wonder just how mad or sad those newly emancipated people felt when they followed Sherman thinking they were bound for 'Glory' and he left em high n well, not dry. but in the river? How did that taste of freedom work for em? We have read accounts of the soldiers and the military leaders on their activity but the accounts from the women in the South, the Blacks, the children, that's some heavy duty fear factoring in. We can pick it apart til the cows come home but when they're in the barn, it's still the same ending.
After the wars end, the Federal/Union/United States Army still kept the "Colored" (the nicest term used then) apart. Some became Buffalo Soldiers. For them it was an honest living and they did work hard and earned the pay. Just don't ask the Native American their opinion on them if you're looking for bonus points. No matter what was done, it was still a complicated business. I just cannot see how there could be a simple, one answer fits all answer for them. They, the former slaves, were caught between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea. The only boat they saw on the water was the SS Minnow and we alll know they never got off the island. They're still there.