Of course many newspapers back in the day used the N word freely. Not wishing to get the board in trouble I'll substitute using the (N word) for what we know what it means.
On Sunday, March 26, 1865 the New York Herald newspaper listed the following: (The “N word IN FENCE AND ELSEWHERE” We gave yesterday extracts from the Richmond papers in relation to the organization of negro troops in the rebel capital? Two whole companies had been organized for the defense of the rebel confederacy and the reinforcement of Lee’s army – which is losing about six companies a day by desertion – and the ladies were called upon to come out and present these dusky heroes with stands of colors, just as the loyal league ladies of this city did to soldiers of the same complexion some time ago. On the day before yesterday we gave an extract which shows where these darkies came from. Every single (N word) had been employed in the rebel hospitals. Fifty-two of these hospitals attendants volunteered in one day for the army, hoping, no doubt, that life would be easier here than in the hospitals, and feeling certain that no place is like the front for a fellow that wants to run away and com over to our side.”