Mounted Cavalry Soldier

The men of the 9th and 10th Cavalry came from various social and economic backgrounds.  Many were veterans of the Civil War.  The ranks of the new cavalry units were filled with ex-slaves but they now had a new perspective – freedom. 

The Indian campaigns of the West provided the signature recognition for the 9th and 10th Cavalry.  Shortly after, both units were transferred to the West, they, along with other cavalry units, engaged Native Americans in battle.  The 9th patrolled the Rio Grande River and the Mexican border, escorting and protecting government mail and settlers, and containing Indians, Mexicans, and lawless Americans.

Between 1867 and 1886, the 10th was engaged in extended campaigns against the Cheyenne, Kiowas, Comanches and Apaches in Kansas, New Mexico, Arizona and the Indian Territory. 

This photograph shows a mounted Buffalo Soldier in full uniform.   Photograph circa 1861 to 1865.

2014.8.11, Courtesy of The Library of Congress