According to the article, Sgt. Mathews joined the Buffalo Soldiers when he was 16, or in 1910. He retired in 1949, three years before the military was desegregated. This man was an eye witness the end of the old west and served in two World Wars. Had we the opportunity to speak to him even last year, he could have recalled firsthand conversations with those who made history. He was there, he spoke to freedmen who were slaves in his own lifetime, talked and served with those who fought Indians, he saw end of the horsedrawn era on thru the dawn of the nuclear age.... Had we known, we could have listened to him in our time. What a treasure! To have a conversation with such a man would be to literally touch the past.
According to http://www.nativeamerican.net, the last Indian war was really a massacre in 1890. Twenty years before this man joined the Army and four years before he was born.
While the name 'Buffalo Soldier' was earned during the Indian wars, it's use was continued by the all-black regiments until the Army desegregated in 1952.
I am surprised that there are some so quick to dismiss this man as an 'Indian killer' without at least reading about him. Much less considered the history, experiences and wisdom he acquired over such a long life. Should we be so quick to dis our elders or speak ill of the dead? Especially when they have lived a life of honor, as best they could in the circumstances of their time?
I am surprised that there are some so quick to dismiss this man as an 'Indian killer' without at least reading about him. Much less considered the history, experiences and wisdom he acquired over such a long life. Should we be so quick to dis our elders or speak ill of the dead? Especially when they have lived a life of honor, as best they could in the circumstances of their time?---herdswoman
Both the 9th Cavalry and 10th Cavalry were recruited by Theodore Roosevelt during the Spanish-Amerivan War.
Those units fought and won the famous, or infamous, 'Battle of San Juan Hill'. Teddy stood and watched.
AND...it was the 'Buffalo Soldiers' who held a corridor so that 'Teddy Boy' could make is highly praised 'charge'.
The accomplishments of these Divisions are legendary.
Ignorance is a bitch.
If not done in ignorance, everyone is entitled to an opinion.
It is kinda of amazing of how some of us bitch about not knowing our history in this country and then folks want to throw part of that history out just because they don't like it.
I think that if one would look at the history of the buffalo soldiers you would find no mention of them massacing indians, if anything they did more patroling of the frontier protecting people moving into the west.
Fort Hauchuaca, the home base of the Buffalo Soldiers, is about 60 minutes East of Tucson. I've been to the base. It's full of history. Last year, I contributed to a fundraiser to restore the original barracks.
One of my former co-workers was a military history buff and knew a great deal about the Buffulo Soldiers. He told me how the Buffalo Soldiers not only had to fight Indians and against Mexican Bandits, they also had to fight white soldiers inside of the fort. He told me of one battle, inside the fort, where the Buffalo Soldiers forced the entire ranks of soldiers outside the wall of the fort and held them off for several weeks. The base commander finally capitulated and granted the Buffalo Soldier the right to eat the army issued food.
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