The 10th Cavalry Regiment was formed as a segregated African-American unit and they were one of the original "Buffalo Soldier" regiments. They are one of the most unique regiments in U.S. Military history. Moving west from Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, within a year after its activation in 1866, the 10th began its march into immortality. The spring of 1877 marked the beginning of more than two decades of continuous service. The regiment’s motto was, and remains, “Ready and Forward.” 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. 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. The 10th Cavalry was reactivated as an integrated combat unit in 1958. Portions of the regiment have served in conflicts ranging from the Vietnam War to Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. The current structure is by squadron, with the 1st, 4th, and 7th Squadrons assigned to three brigades of the U.S. 4th Infantry Division at Ft Carson, Colorado.
One narrative of the name "Buffalo Soldiers"
In September 1867, Private John Randall of Troop G of the 10th Cavalry Regiment was assigned to escort two civilians on a hunting trip. A band of 70 Cheyenne warriors swept down on them. The two civilians quickly fell in the initial attack and Randall's horse was shot out from beneath him. Randall scrambled to safety behind a washout under the railroad tracks, where he fended off the attack with only his pistol until help from the nearby camp arrived. The Indians quickly retreated, leaving behind 13 dead warriors. Private Randall suffered a gunshot wound to his shoulder and 11 lance wounds, but recovered. The Cheyenne quickly spread word of this new type of soldier, "who had fought like a cornered buffalo; who like a buffalo had suffered wound after wound, yet had not died; and who like a buffalo had a thick and shaggy mane of hair.”
Indian Wars 1866-1874
One of the first battles of the 10th was the Battle of the Saline River. This battle occurred 25 miles northwest of Fort Hays in Kansas near the end of August 1867. After a railroad work party was wiped out, patrols from the 38th Infantry Regiment (in 1869 reorganized into the 24th Infantry Regiment) with a 10th Cavalry troop were sent out to locate the "hostile" Cheyenne forces. Captain George Armes, Company F, 10th Cavalry, while following an active trail along the Saline River were surrounded by about 400 Cheyenne warriors. Armes formed a defensive "hollow square" with the cavalry mounts in the middle. Seeking better defensive ground, Armes walked his command while maintaining the defensive square. After 8 hours of combat, 2,000 rounds of defensive fire and 15 miles of movement, the Cheyenne disengaged and withdrew. Company F, without reinforcements, concluded 113 miles of movement during the 30 hour patrol, riding the final 10 miles back to Fort Hays with only one trooper killed in action. Captain Armes, wounded in the hip early in the battle, commented later, "It is the greatest wonder in the world that my command escaped being massacred." Armes credited his officers for a "... devotion to duty and coolness under fire." In 1867 and 1868, the 10th Cavalry participated in Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman's winter campaigns against the Cheyennes, Arapahos, and Comanches. Units of the 10th prevented the Cheyenne from fleeing to the northwest, thus allowing Custer and the 7th Cavalry to defeat them at the decisive battle near Fort Cobb, Indian Territory.
The regiment served during the Spanish-American War in 1898, alongside the 24th and 25th "colored" regiments (1st Division, 1st Brigade) with the 9th Cavalry. The 9th and 10th formed a core around which volunteer units were attached in the Cavalry Division (Dismounted) under Major General Joseph Wheeler and were in the 1st Brigade under Brigadier General Samuel S. Sumner. They fought in the Battle of Las Guasimas, the Battle of Tayacoba (where all four members of the last rescue party were awarded the Medal of Honor), the Battle of San Juan Hill and the Siege of Santiago de Cuba. Three principal battles were fought by this brigade on the approach to the principal city of Santiago de Cuba. In many ways this was the regiment's most glorious time. The first of these were the Battle of Las Guasimas on 24 June 1898 where Lieutenant Conley and the 10th Cavalry saved a portion of the Rough Riders from annihilation when their lead companies were ambushed and pinned down. The second was the Battle of El Caney in the early morning hours of 1 July where Spanish forces held the Americans at bay for almost twelve hours. Then came the Battle of San Juan Hill in the late afternoon. The battle of the San Juan Heights involved the 10th Cavalry Regiment who took part in the taking of the two main heights. One was on the so-called Kettle Hill by the Americans and other the main height on what would be called San Juan Hill. As the 10th moved into position, they were receiving fire from the San Juan Heights that was fortified by the Spanish defenders.
Following the end of the Spanish American war, the 10th Cavalry was deployed to the Philippine Islands in what was known then as the "Philippine Insurrection", but now termed the Philippine American War, until 1902. Although the conflict was controversial amongst many in and out of the African American community, the regiment, alongside the 9th Cavalry and 24th and 25th Infantry, served honorably and admirably. The conflict also provided an opportunity as several senior NCOs were commissioned as officers in the Philippine Scouts, including Edward Baker. But such opportunity would be short lived as the first American Governor General, then future President William Taft barred the four segregated "colored" regiments from continuing to serve in the Philippines.
Duty in the East
In 1909, for the first time in the Regiment's history, it was sent East for garrison duty in the peaceful state of Vermont. They arrived at Fort Ethan Allen on 28 July 1909. There they resided with the 3rd US Cavalry, old saddle mates from the Indian Wars, Cuba, and the Philippines. In various letters and books they described their time from 1909 to 1913 as "luxurious." They had an indoor riding hall, solid warm barracks, heated barns for their horses, friendly neighbors and plenty of "wholesome food." Educational opportunities on base and within the community were provided and many men earned higher degrees. When one compares this to building their own barracks, rough frontier living and military field rations, this was heaven on earth for the 10th. Baseball was a favorite past time among the soldiers and they quickly found willing local teams to play against. During the harsh Vermont winters, the fairly new game of basketball was introduced, learned and played almost nightly indoors. This short stint in the East allowed time to formalize their regimental coat of arms in 1911, allowed them to show off their horsemanship to amazed civilians, members of Congress, statesmen from many lands and even President Wilson. Due to rising tension along the Mexican-American border, the 10th was sent to the South West starting in late November and finishing in December 1913. Fort Huachuca in Arizona became their new headquarters.
World War I - Early Cold War
The 10th Cavalry spent World War I in the United States. On 9 January 1918, the U.S. 10th Cavalry Regiment was involved in firefight with Yaqui Indians just west of Nogales, Arizona. E Troop intercepted a group of American Yaquis on their way to render aid to Yaquis of Sonora, who were in the midst of long running war with the Mexicans. At the beginning of World War II the 10th Cavalry was relegated to caretaker duties at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. In 1942 the regiment was moved to Camp Lockett, California replacing the 11th Cavalry in its duties as the southern defense of the Western Defense Command, under LTG DeWitt, 153 NCOs of this regiment would later be assigned to the newly organized 28th Cavalry Regiment forming its cadre, and filling out the 4th Cavalry Brigade, which would remain in existence after the deactivation of the 2nd Cavalry Division, and its subsequent reactivation. In the summer of 1943, the 10th and 28th Cavalry Regiments fought wildfires in the Cleveland National Forest. In 1944, the entire 2nd Cavalry Division was shipped out to Oran, North Africa; where it disembarked and was deactivated on 9 March 1944. Although trained as combat soldiers, the soldiers of this regiment, and other regiments of the 2nd Cavalry Division were reorganized as combat support and combat service support units.
10th Cavalry in the 21st Century
C Troop, 10th Cavalry was reactivated 22 September 2001 and served as the Brigade Reconnaissance Troop (BRT) as well as the brigade's quick reaction force (QRF) for 1st Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division. C Troop maintained a large area of operations. The BRT, known as the "Cowboy Troop", set the operations tempo (OPTEMPO) for battle operations in the northeastern section of Baghdad and Sadr City. C Troop was reportedly the only unit in Baghdad at the time clearing routes in light vehicles, with a reported 4,800 different forms of contact over the course of the year. After returning to Fort Hood, Texas, C Troop was deactivated and re-flagged as C Troop, 1st Squadron, 7th Cavalry. The 1st Squadron, 10th Cavalry, 2nd Brigade, 4th Division served during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003–2004 (in which it earned its second Presidential Unit Citation) and again from 2005 to 2006. The squadron is currently serving as the Armored Reconnaissance Squadron of the 2nd Brigade, 4th Infantry Division at Fort Carson, Colorado. B Troop, 1st Squadron 10th Cavalry, led by Captain Brian McCarthy and First Sergeant Brian Allen were featured in a 14-page article of Texas Monthly magazine which covered the 2005–2006 deployment to Iraq. This is one of many articles on the 10th Cavalry units.
It is with great regret to inform you that Trooper David Spruill has past on to Fiddler's Green today (January 31, 2015). Trooper Spruill fought a valiant fight, but the Lord called him home to glory. Please keep the Spruill family in your prayers as they deal with the loss of … Read More →
On January 10, 2015, new Chapter Officers were installed in their elected positions, those Troopers are the following:
Chapter President - Sam Samuels
1st Vice President - Robert McClain
2nd Vice President - Kenneth Cole
Secretary - Sam Sawyer
Assistance Secretary - Raymond Perry … Read More →
1. The Lawton-Fort Sill Chapter calls all Troopers to renew your annual membership for 2014. The cost of annual membership dues is $75.00, and $25.00 for lifetime members. I realize some Troopers have already renewed their membership, if so, please disregard this message. … Read More →
If you would like to order an Association Name Badge, please contact Trooper Gregory Henry. The badges are $30. If you plan to write a check, make it out to the 9th & 10th (Horse) Cavalry Association. … Read More →
The Wal-Mart of Sheridan Road has requested the Lawton-Fort Sill Buffalo Soldier Chapter to set-up a static display between the hours of 10:00am-2:00pm. They plan to have the Lawton Constitution there for coverage. This is a great Public Relations (PR) to assist in getting our … Read More →
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