Famed Buffalo Soldiers Honored at West Point With Statue

The Buffalo Soldiers were the first all African-American regiment of the United States Army. In 1866, they became famous in their role as scouts and frontiersmen who fought against Native Americans on America’s western frontier during a tumultuous period of racial tension known as Reconstruction.

The “as confederate statues come down, west point honors buffalo soldiers answers” is a statue at West Point. The Buffalo Soldiers were the first African-American regiment to be raised in the United States Army. The statue was unveiled on June 14th, 2018 and will serve as an inspiration for all cadets.

Buffalo Soldiers, renowned for their excellent horsemanship, taught riding skills and tactics to all-white cadets at the West Point Military Academy from 1907 until 1947. However, until recently, their contributions were nothing more than a footnote in the academy’s history.

On September 10, the school erected a new memorial honoring West Point’s former Black troops. Despite the fact that the sports fields at West Point were renamed in 1973 to commemorate Buffalo Soldiers, the real men’s monument was atop a huge rock with a plaque.

This homage was insufficient for many.

The 10-foot-tall bronze monument is in the image of Sgt. Sanders Matthews, who died in 2016 and was the last known surviving Buffalo Soldier to serve at West Point from 1939 to 1962. It was sculpted by Eddie Dixon, who served in the 101st Airborne in Vietnam from 1968 to 1970.

At the unveiling, Dixon stated, “When I was growing up, we didn’t have any role models to speak to.” “We had no idea we had Buffalo Soldiers,” says the narrator.

It would have made a difference if we had known about it. He went on to say, “Now they have a historical, physical reference point.”

A member of the Buffalo Soldiers Motorcycle Club salutes as the National Anthem is played during the dedication of a statue honoring Buffalo Soldiers. (Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images) During the unveiling of a monument honoring Buffalo Soldiers, a member of the Buffalo Soldiers Motorcycle Club salutes while the National Anthem is performed. (Getty Images/Michael M. Santiago)

Buffalo Soldiers were officially known as the United States Army’s 9th and 10th Cavalry when they were formed in 1866, a year after the civil war ended. According to the National Museum of African American History and Curiosity, Buffalo Soldiers “served at a variety of posts in the Southwest and Great Plains, taking part in most of the military campaigns during the decades-long Indian Wars –– during which they compiled a distinguished record, with 18 Buffalo Soldiers awarded the Medal of Honor.”  

Despite the Buffalo Troops’ reputation for bravery and horsemanship, the Army would remain segregated until 1948, requiring black soldiers like Matthews to reside in segregated quarters at West Point. In between their instructional responsibilities, the guys were assigned to menial work.

Matthews subsequently recounted in an Oral History “We were the only ones that cut ice for everyone on the post.” “On the post, no white soldier ever cut ice; it was always Blacks.”

Ret. Col. Krewasky A. Salter, a former teacher of military history at West Point and the current executive director of the First Division Museum in Wheaton, Ill., told the New York Times “It is one of those dichotomies that some of the best soldiers in our military were African American, and at the same time Jim Crowism and’separate but equal’ existed.” “They symbolized African Americans’ optimism, faith, resilience, and dedication to what they might achieve.”

Currently, Black cadets account up 17% of the class of 2024 and 14% of the student population at West Point.

The monument’s installation on Friday marked the end of a nearly five-year fundraising campaign by the Buffalo Soldiers Association of West Point, which collected almost $1 million for the memorial.

“These Soldiers exemplified the West Point motto of Duty, Honor, Country, and Army Ethic ideals,” stated Lt. Gen. Darryl A. Williams, the 60th Superintendent of the United States Military Academy. “This memorial will guarantee that the Buffalo Soldiers’ history is cherished, remembered, and celebrated for decades to come, while also acting as an inspiration for future generations of cadets.”

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The “Buffalo Soldiers” were the first African-American soldiers to fight in the United States Army. They were also known as “Famed Buffalo Soldiers.” On September 17, 2018, a statue of these soldiers was unveiled at West Point. Reference: buffalo soldier statue removal .

Frequently Asked Questions

Why it is a powerful message to have a statue of a buffalo soldier at West Point?

A: The soldier who is considered the first African-American to graduate from West Point was a buffalo soldier, which means they were people of color and served in the U.S. Army against their will during slavery as indentured servants. It is often thought that these soldiers helped free other slaves through fighting for freedom during the Civil War and Reconstruction periods, but this isnt entirely accurate due to lack of records about them at all times.

Who was the most famous Buffalo Soldier?

A: The most famous Buffalo Soldier is probably Audie Murphy.

How many Buffalo Soldiers received the Medal of Honor?

A: There were 3 Buffalo Soldiers who received the Medal of Honor during the Civil War.

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