Buffalo Soldiers Honored in Santa Fe

Santa Fe has a permanent memorial that acts as a reminder in New Mecio during Black History month. The Buffalo soldiers were a contingent of black men in the Union Army during the Civil War. They became the 9th and 10th cavalries in the region. The mandate of the Buffalo soldiers provided protection from marauding Indians and Mexican revolutionaries. Bandits and cattle rustlers who roamed the territory had to stay clear of the Buffalo soldiers. Several African American troops came about during the Civil War, shortly after Congress established the first peacetime all-black regiments in the U.S. Army.

Santa Fe National Cemetery

Some of the earliest burials at the Santa Fe National cemetery include the 10th Calvary Regiment known as the Buffalo soldiers. They provided protection to western settlers during Manifest Destiny. The remains of sixty-four Buffalo Soldiers stationed at the Fort Craig are interred at the National Cemetery in Santa Fe. These soldiers can be found buried below the Fort Craig monument on the north side of the cemetery.  

Civil War Casualties

Santa Fe’s National cemetery was borne out of the conflict of the American Civil War as its battlefields continued westward. The Confederate Soldiers killed during the Battle of Glorieta in 1862 are buried on grounds next to Rosario Catholic cemetery. A memorial dedicated to the Glorietta Pass conflict can be found there. Eight years later the Archdiocese of Santa Fe donated that land to the federal government for use as a national cemetery. By 1885 the government brought the remains of soldiers that had been buried at military outposts that had closed to be reinterred at the Santa Fe National Cemetery. The earliest graves of the cemetery can be traced back to both the Civil War and Indian Campaigns.


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