Sunday, January 20, 2008

25th Infantry Buffalo Soldiers

Bicycle Corp from Fort Missoula at Yellowstone in 1896

The 25th Infantry arrived at Fort Missoula in May 1888. The regiment was one of four created after the Civil War that were made up of black soldiers with white officers. In 1896, Lieutenant James Moss organized the 25th Infantry Bicycle Corps to test the military potential of bicycles. The corps undertook several short journeys - up the Bitterroot Valley by bicycle to deliver dispatches, north to the St. Ignatius area, and through Yellowstone National Park - before making a 1,900 mile trip from Fort Missoula to St. Louis in 1897. The Army concluded that while the bicycle offered limited military potential, it would never replace the horse. The 25th Infantry returned to Missoula by train. When the Spanish-American War broke out in 1898, the 25th was one of the first units called to fight. The regiment served bravely in Cuba and the Philippines, but was reassigned to other posts after the war's end.

Further Resources on the Buffalo Soldiers

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