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Year of Buffalo Soldiers



State of Arizona

House of Representatives

Forty-eighth Legislature

First Regular Session











            Whereas, after the Civil War, the United States faced the need for a larger “peacetime military” to occupy the South and protect settlers on the western frontier.  In the summer of 1866, the United States Congress passed legislation establishing a peacetime military; and

            Whereas, before the legislation was passed, a hotly debated issue concerned the inclusion of African-Americans in the regular Army.  Some politicians made the then radical suggestion that the Army fully integrate African-Americans into its ranks.  Other politicians wanted the army to remain white-only.  They eventually agreed to maintain the status quo and continue placing African-American recruits in segregated units.  A provision of the 1866 legislation created six regiments of African-American troops, four infantry and two cavalry, of approximately one thousand men each; and

            Whereas, in August 1866, the 9th and 10th cavalries were organized.  The 9th cavalry was in Greensville, Louisiana, with most of the original recruits from near New Orleans and Louisville.  The 10th cavalry was at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.  Many of the recruits in both units were freed slaves from the north.  The primary mission assigned to these African-American troops was to combat the Native American tribes caught in the westward expansion of the United states and to escorts the tribes to the reservations; and

            Whereas the nickname “Buffalo Soldier” was bestowed on the troops by the Native Americans as an attestation to their valor in battle.  The buffalo was a sacred animal to the Native Americans, and they would not bestow its name on the soldiers unless they were worthy adversaries, fighting ferociously to the end and living up to their motto “Ready and Forward.”  The proud acceptance of the name “Buffalo Soldier” by the African-American soldiers was a badge of honor and pride for the troops; and

            Whereas, the buffalo soldiers were sent to the great Plains along the Rio Grande, New Mexico, Texas, Arizona and Colorado and into the Dakotas.  The duties of the 9th and 10th U.S. cavalries included guarding the mail and escorting and guarding stagecoaches, cattle drives, railroad crews and surveyors.  They built roads and telegraph lines, mapped and explored, including mapping vast territories in Arizona and New Mexico marking water holes.  They played a major part in building the west and making it safe for the westward expansion; and

            Whereas in July 1885, the 10th Cavalry moved west into Arizona.  After arriving troops of the regiment were dispersed through the area to cover as much territory as possible.  These troops were stationed at Whipple Barracks, Fort Grant, Fort Thomas and Fort Apache, and

            Where in 1913, the 10th Cavalry Buffalo Soldiers were sent to Fort Huachuca and remained there for almost twenty years.  They joined General John J. Pershing in the 1916 expedition into Mexico and during World War I, they were assigned the mission of guarding the United States-Mexico border; and

            Whereas, Second Lieutenant Henry O. Flipper, a member of the 10th Cavalry, was the first African –American graduate of the U.S. Military Academy, West Point, Class of 1877.  Lieutenant Flipper excelled in Engineering, Law, French and Spanish.  After dismissal from the Army, Henry O. Flipper went on to attain recognition and respect as a surveyor and in 1890, he opened his own civil mining engineering office in Nogales, Arizona.  Joseph S. Flipper II, the grand-nephew of Lieutenant Henry O. Flipper, has lived in Phoenix since 1945.  He has had a long and distinguished teaching career and is an active member of the Greater Southern Arizona Area Chapter of the 9th and 10th Horse Cavalry Association; and

            Whereas, on July 5, 1992, General Colin Powell, then Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, dedicated the Buffalo Soldier Monument at Fort Leavenworth Kansa, the birthplace of one of the regiments.  The monument stands as a well-deserved tribute to the soldiers for their continued excellence and contributions to this state and nation over the years.  Despite prejudice in and out of the military and being allocated the worst horses, clothing and equipment, these outstanding individuals earned more Congressional Medal of Honor and had the lowest desertion rate of any unit in the Army.


Be it resolved by the House of Representatives of the State of Arizona, the Senate concurring:

            1.  That the Legislature recognize the State of Arizona as one of the Frontier Homes of the Buffalo Soldier.

            2.  That the Legislature recognize the contributions made by the Buffalo Soldiers to this country and state.

            3.  That the Legislature designates 2007 as “The year of the Buffalo Soldier.”

            4.  That the Secretary of the state of Arizona transmit copies of this Resolution to the Greater Southern Arizona Area Chapter of the 9th and 10th Horse Cavalry Association and to the Arizona Historical Society.


Adopted by the Arizona House of Representatives, February 22, 2007, the Senate concurring.



Speaker, House of Representatives






Chief Clerk, House of Representatives



Timothy S. Be­­e_______

President of the Senate


Chaimin Billington____

Secretary of the Senate


Janice K. Brewer____

Secretary of State




Arizona Buffalo Soldiers Association

1201 East Michigan Street - TucsonArizona 85714

 Phone/Fax: (520) xxx-xxx   Email: azbsa@juno.com