Today, Congressman Mike Turner (OH-3) submitted the following statement for the Congressional Record honoring Col. Charles Young, a Buffalo Solider. The statement comes on the same day Turner joined the House in approving H.R. 1022, the Buffalo Soldiers in the National Parks Study Act. The legislation directs the Secretary of the Interior to study alternatives for the commemoration and interpretation of the role of the Buffalo Soldiers in the early years of the National Parks. African-American troops, in the late 19th century and early 20th century, came to be known as the Buffalo Soldiers.

Statement for the Congressional Record

Submitted by Congressman Michael R. Turner

January 25, 2012

Mr. Speaker, I would like to recognize the important contributions of Colonel Charles Young, a Buffalo Soldier whose historic home is in my community in Southwest Ohio.   

As a Member of the House Armed Services Committee and Co-Chair of the House Historic Preservation Caucus, I have the privilege of frequently working with our servicemembers as well as a great appreciation for our nation’s historic treasures.    

Colonel Young, the third African-American to graduate from the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1889, was a distinguished officer in the U.S. Army.  He was a pioneer of military intelligence techniques, a commander of troops in combat in the Spanish-American War and the Mexican expedition against Pancho Villa.

His first assignment after graduation was with the Buffalo Soldiers in the 10th Cavalry in Nebraska, and then with the 9th and 10th Cavalries in Utah. With the outbreak of the Spanish-American War, he was reassigned as Second Lieutenant to training duty at Camp Alger, Virginia.               

In 1903, then-Captain Young was in command of the 10th Cavalry stationed at the Presidio of San Francisco. That summer, with the Army responsible for its management, Colonel Young was assigned to serve as Acting Superintendent of Sequoia National Parks in California.     

Colonel Young was then awarded a commission as a Major in the Ninth Ohio Volunteer Infantry.  Later, during the Spanish-American War, he commanded a squadron of the 10th Cavalry Buffalo Soldiers in Cuba.  Throughout his military career, Colonel Young distinguished himself in service to our nation with the Buffalo Soldiers of the 9th and 10th Cavalries, and the 25th Infantry, as well as serving as Professor of Military Science at Wilberforce University, Ohio.

Today we seek to honor the continuing legacy and leadership of the Buffalo Soldiers.  Colonel Charles Young stands out as a shining example of the dedication, service, and commitment of the Buffalo Soldiers throughout United States and world history.

Mr. Speaker, I am glad to recognize the important historical contributions of Buffalo Soldiers such as Colonel Young.