Fort Concho to Celebrate Buffalo Soldiers
To mark the 150th Anniversary of the act of Congress that created Buffalo Soldier units in the U.S. Army, Fort Concho will host a special ceremony and talk at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, July 28, on the fort’s Parade Ground.
Members of the fort’s Buffalo Soldier living history unit, assisted by other living history members, will take down the flag and fire the evening gun, much as was done in the fort’s historic days. Immediately thereafter, guests can gather in the Commissary Building for a talk on the history and achievements of the Buffalo Soldiers by Dr. John Langellier, a noted historian from Tucson, Arizona, and author of a new book, “Fighting for Uncle Sam: Buffalo Soldiers in the Frontier Army.” Copies of the book, featuring dozens of rarely seen photos, will be on sale at the event.
The event, complete with light refreshments, is free. The commissary is at the intersection of Burgess Street and East Avenue C on the fort’s northeast corner.
Authorized by Congress on July 28, 1866, six new regiments, eventually reduced to four, of black enlisted soldiers were created in the 9th and 10th U.S. Cavalry regiments and the 24th and 25th U.S. Infantry regiments.
Nicknamed “buffalo soldiers” by their Indian foes who equated their hair style and courage to that of their sacred buffalo, these troops served with distinction across the American west in the late 1800s. Companies of all four regiments served at Fort Concho from 1869-85. The 10th Cavalry had its headquarters at Fort Concho from 1875-82. Over Fort Concho’s 22-year active history, the Buffalo Soldiers represented half of the soldiers stationed at the post.
“This event is a unique opportunity to participate in a celebration of one of our community’s important origins,” Fort Concho Manager Bob Bluthardt said. “Dr. Langellier’s new book well covers this major segment of frontier history and his talk will be informative and entertaining.”
U.S. Rep. Michael Conaway will attend and make some remarks.
For more information, call 325-481-2646 or visit fortconcho.com.