Buffalo Soldier Impressions


L-R: SFC Sellers, SFC James, Mr. Lankford, SFC Bell, PFC McDuffie, SSG Gould, LTC Stanley, SFC Safford, March 2005

In 1866 Congress Authorized the formation of 4 Regular Army Units of Infantry and two of Cavalry made up by Black Soldiers with White Officers. In 1869 the infantry units were amalgamated to two which we know today as the 24th and 25th Infantry Regiments. The Cavalry Units were the 9th and 10th Cavalry.  From 1866-1898 these regiments made up 12% of the Regular Army and took part in 13% of the engagements with the Native American’s, on the Western Frontier.

It was during this time that the Native American’s reportly bestowed the nick name “Buffalo Soldiers” on them, out of respect.   Whether this is true or not, the name is there and has become part of their history.

 During the late 1870s through the early 1890s that 3 African Americans attended and graduated from West Point and were posted to the Cavalry Units. Henry O. Flipper was first in 1877 and served with the 10th Cavalry. John Hanks Alexander was second to graduate in 1887 and served in the 9th Cavalry.    Charles Young was the last graduate of the 19th Century and was posted to the 9th Cavalry also.

Little is written about the “Buffalo Soldier” contribution in the Spanish American War of 1898 or the subsequent guerrilla fighting in the Philippines. They participated in both campaigns and most notably the 9th and 10th Cavalry along with several other regular army cavalry units assaulted San Juan Heights with Teddy Roosevelt’s Rough Riders in the Spanish American War.    General Joseph Wheeler (a former Confederate General) had overall command of the Cavalry Division in Cuba.

We are seeking to recreate through living history the “Buffalo Soldiers” of this era. The African American’s shown in these photographs are all soldiers on active duty today with the United States Army. If you are interested in participating then contact us through Capt Stanley.

Capt. David L. Stanley, Cmdg.
15 Apr 05

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