Historic Markers Across Florida

The Buffalo Soldiers in Tampa Heights 1898

Marker ID:  
Location: on N Central Ave at E Columbus Dr.
County: Hillsborough
Coordinates: N 27° 58.016    W 082° 27.315
  27.96693333    -82.45525
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: None


African-Americans have served valiantly in all of America´s wars. Although black soldiers fought and died in previous conflicts, they were not permitted to enlist as army regulars until after the Civil War. Organized into separate infantry and cavalry units, the black regiments were assigned to protect settlers in the American West. Native Americans, in honor of the fighting spirit of the African-American troops, called them "Buffalo Soldiers."
In April 1898, the United States declared war against Spain. Thousands of U.S. soldiers arrived in Tampa to prepare for an invasion of Cuba. Ten regiments, including two black units, camped on the fringes of the elegant Tampa Heights neighborhood. The Twenty-fourth Infantry was located just north of this marker, while the Twenty-fifth camped to the southeast.

The Buffalo Soldiers fostered pride among local blacks while encountering hostility in Tampa. On the eve of the army´s embarkation for Cuba, Tampa was the scene of a serious clash between the black and white troops. Overcoming racial obstacles, the Buffalo Soldiers distinguished themselves on the battlefield in Cuba and the Philippines, earning five medals of honor for valor at San Juan and El Caney.

Hillsborough County Historical Advisory Council in cooperation with The Tampa Historical Society


Wikipedia - Buffalo Soldier