The Lone Ranger - Born to slave parents in 1838 in Crawford County Arkansas, Bass Reeves would become the first black U.S. Deputy Marshal west of the Mississippi River and one of the greatest frontier heroes in our nation’s history. Owned by a man named William Reeves, a farmer and politician, Bass took the sur Working alongside his parents, Reeves started out as a water boy until he was old enough to become a field hand.https://www.legendsofamerica.com/we-bassreeves/
In 1870, the 25th Infantry Regiment was sent to San Antonio, Texas and in 1880 it was transferred to the northern Plains where it operated in Montana, Dakota Territory, and Minnesota. In 1888, Headquarters, Field, Staff, Band, and Companies G, H, I, and K were moved to Fort Missoula; Companies A and D were moved to Fort Custer; and Companies B, C, E, and F were stationed at Fort Shaw. The soldiers were used to quell possible Indian uprisings and to prevent violence at labor disputes. The black soldiers from the 25th Infantry saw action in the 1892 Johnson County, Wyoming cattle war and in the Coeur d’Alene, Idaho mining strike.https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2013/4/28/1205471/-Black-Soldiers-The-25th-Infantry-in-the-19th-Century
Private Cathay Williams was the only woman to serve in the US Army as a Buffalo Soldier. On November 15, 1866 she enlisted in the Army as a man. Williams reversed her name William Cathay and lived as a male soldier and served until she was found out due to the last of many illnesses she suffered while a serving. She is the only documented black woman known to have served in the Army during these times when enlisting women was prohibited. http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/Cathay-Williams1.png
Mary Fields (c. 1832–1914), also known as Stagecoach Mary and Black Mary, was the first African-American woman star route mail carrier in the United States. Fields obtained the star route contract for the delivery of U.S. mail from Cascade, Montana to Saint Peter's Mission in 1885. She drove the route with horse and wagon, not a stagecoach, for two four-year contracts: from 1885 to 1889 and from 1889 to 1893. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Fields
Exciting Presentations - African American's In The West With
Special Guest Speakers!
Men and Women of the West
For enslaved Blacks the West offered freedom and refuge from slavery. It gave African Americans a chance to make a living. African Americans were pioneers cowboys and prospectors, African Americans have contributed to our African American History of the "Wild" West.
More than twenty-five percent of all cowboys were Black. The label “cowboy” is said to have been a derogatory term used to describe Black “cowhands”
The West provided African American men women and children, the chance for a life that could be known by skilled craft and not by the color of their skin. However, racism remained a significant part of daily life but to a lesser extent than in the South and outer areas of the United States.
Formed as a segregated African-American unit, the 10th Cavalry was one of the original "Buffalo Soldier" regiments. It served in combat during the Indian Wars in the western United States, the Spanish-American War in Cuba and in the Philippine-American War. It was the only African-American unit under American command that fought German soldiers (advisors) in World War I. The regiment was trained as a combat unit but later relegated to non-combat duty and served in that capacity in World War II until its deactivation in 1944.
Buffalo Soldiers were responsible for escorting settlers, cattle herds, and railroad crews. They also conducted campaigns against American Indian tribes on a western frontier that extended from Montana in the Northwest to Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona in the Southwest.