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AfriGeneas Military Research Forum Archive

Re: Harlem Hellfighters

Sir. what your statement says is not based on any facts at all that can back it up! What you are talking about was a problem of the army as whole during that period for blacks as well as white. As far as pay is concerned they were not paid less during this period at all! As far as horses and accommodations that again was an army wide problem. As far as the Medal of Honor is concerned you are still incorrect. I will agree with you that there are many today because of misinformation both pro and con who don't fully appreciate the value of these units. Did they rescue TR? I would suggest that you check your facts before making that claim. Have there achievements been minimized, and distorted my answer would be yes both pro and con! The issue is again who where these men! I do believe that they were Great Americans and I understand more than anything else that they were men good, and bad. What most people fail to understand is that these men help to elevate the positions of a soldier in the eyes of many American during and after that period. How we view our soldiers today is a lot different than how they viewed by most Americans before the end of World War 2.

Best Regards

Anthony wrote:
Hello. Yes, I can back up the facts that they received inferior supplies, equipment, horses etc. They generally received used equipment from the white units, and they were usually paid less. It is well documented that their cloths and uniforms were not the best of quality-thus the Buffalo skin coats/hats.During their first year at FT Leavenworth, Grierson spent as much time pleading for horses, better living accommodations, etc for the 10th Cav. This info is contained in many letters written by Grierson and his wife.

We know by the absence of the achievements of the Buffalo Soldiers that they were not as appreciated as say Custer and the 7th Cav and other non Black units. Even today there are teachers, historians who still doubt whether the Buffalo Soldiers rescued TR and RR at the battle of Kettle Hill, and very seldom do you see in movies about the West the inclusion of Black Troopers. It well documented that TR went out of his way to minimize, distort and lie about the achievements/contributions of the Buffalo Soldiers during his "Jolly Little" war.

I live less than 30 miles from the home of the Pony Express in St Joseph, MO and think how many different movies/scenarios you have seen about the Pony Express. Based on what we read and hear one would think that the Pony Express had a long and glorious history when in fact they lasted less than two years.

Regarding the Congressional Medals of Honor-I should clarify and state they received more CMH between 1867 and 1898 than any other units. My records show 18 for Black soldiers, 2 for the White Officers and 4 for Seminole Indian Scouts for a total of 24 for the four units.

I hope that this clarifies some questions. I am always open to learn. Carlton Philpot

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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