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By Senators Campbell, Ayer, Carris, Collins, Condos, Coppenrath, Cummings, Doyle, Flanagan, Giard, Hartwell, Illuzzi, Kitchel, Kittell, Lyons, MacDonald, Maynard, Mazza, McCormack, Miller, Mullin, Nitka, Racine, Scott, Shumlin, Snelling, Starr and White,

     By Representatives Condon of Colchester, Acinapura of Brandon, Adams of Hartland, Atkins of Winooski, Bissonnette of Winooski, Bostic of St. Johnsbury, Canfield of Fair Haven, Clark of Vergennes, Errecart of Shelburne, Kilmartin of Newport City, Krawczyk of Bennington, Kupersmith of S. Burlington, Larrabee of Danville, McAllister of Highgate, Moran of Wardsboro, Myers of Essex, Spengler of Colchester, Stevens of Shoreham, Valliere of Barre City, Wheeler of Derby, Zenie of Colchester,

Whereas, prior to President Truman’s executive order that integrated the United States military forces in the late 1940s, African American soldiers were forced to serve in segregated units, and

Whereas, in the roughly half-century spanning the years between the Civil War and World War I, African Americans enlisting in the United States Army were organized into units of Buffalo Soldiers, and

Whereas, beginning in July 1909, the 10th Cavalry Regiment, one of four cavalry regiments of Buffalo Soldiers, marched into Fort Ethan Allen for its new Vermont posting after having been previously stationed in Kansas and the tropical outposts of Cuba and the Philippines, and

Whereas, not only were the Buffalo Soldiers now faced with, and largely ill‑prepared for, the extremely cold Vermont winter, but also they had entered a state that, though once a strong bastion of abolitionist support, had a miniscule African American population, and

Whereas, the blizzards of the 1909–1910 winter proved discouraging for the new arrivals, who lacked appropriate clothing for the season, and

Whereas, during their four years in Vermont, the initial hostility that Buffalo Soldiers experienced eventually lessened, based on the positive impression the soldiers made on the Vermont population, and

Whereas, a number of Buffalo Soldiers who mustered out of the United States Army while stationed in Vermont settled in Winooski, and

Whereas, in 1913, the 10th Cavalry Regiment departed Vermont for a new posting at Fort Huachuca, Arizona, ending its presence in the state, and

Whereas, in anticipation and commemoration of the centennial anniversary of the 10th Cavalry Regiment’s arrival in Vermont, United States Department of Defense retired historian Frank Schubert recently presented a lecture at the University of Vermont entitled “Buffalo Soldier Contributions: 10th Cavalry Regiment, U.S. Army,” and

Whereas, local descendants of 10th Cavalry members, in conjunction with the University’s special collections department, sponsored an exhibit at the Bailey Howe Library detailing the history of the Cavalry’s Vermont posting, and

Whereas, on July 28–29, 2009, a special centennial commemoration of the 10th Cavalry Regiment’s Vermont arrival will be held, and the Vermont organizers are hoping that the Ninth & Tenth Cavalry Association’s 2009 national gathering will be held in conjunction with the Vermont event, now therefore be it

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives:

That the General Assembly commemorates the 100th anniversary of the United States Army’s 10th Cavalry Regiment of Buffalo Soldiers’ arrival in Vermont and wishes their descendants every success with their special activities planned for the coming year, and be it further

Resolved:  That the Secretary of State be directed to send a copy of this resolution to Retired Colonel Franklin Henderson, past national president of the Ninth & Tenth (Horse) Cavalry Association in Los Angeles, and to Rose Mary Graveline at the University of Vermont.

Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont