Texas Forts Trail Region

Participant in the Texas Historical Commission's
Texas Heritage Trails Program

The 9th - We Can and We Will!

The 9th Cavalry, one of the country’s all-African American units engaged in the frontier wars of the 19th century, produced nineteen Medal of Honor recipients. Five of those were awarded to soldiers fighting on Texas turf. Private Adam Paine, Indian Scout, served under Col. R. S. Mackenzie and earned his medal during an engagement near the Canyon Blanco tributary of the Red River. Born in Florida, Paine assimilated into the Seminole tribe and ended up in Texas, joining the Indian Scouts at Fort Duncan. Two years after his discharge, Paine was shot and killed during a confrontation. He is buried in the Seminole Indian Scout Cemetery in Brackettville. Private Pompey Factor, Trumpeter Isaac Payne, and Sergeant John Ward, all Indian Scouts, charged twenty-five hostiles along the Pecos River, aiding in the escape and survival of their commanding officer, Lt. John Lapham Bullis, whose horse had bolted during the battle. After his discharge, Pompey was told that no record of his service existed and, as a result, he was denied his military pension. He is buried alongside Isaac Payne in the Seminole Indian Scout Cemetery in Brackettville. Sergeant Emanual Stance of Company F rode out from Fort McKavett in May of 1870 and proceeded to fend off hostile attacks, recapture stolen horses, and recover two kidnapped children. Stance received the Medal of Honor two months later for his valor and bravery in what would become known as the Battle of Kickapoo Springs. The award, the first for an African American in the country, would signal the beginning of a new paradigm for African Americans nationwide in a post-Civil War society.

Members of the 9th were part of a four-regiment force, two infantry and two cavalry, comprised of African Americans, collectively known as the Buffalo Soldiers. Historical documentation features the two cavalry regiments in particular, archived in fort museums that defended a line once considered the Texas frontier. Heritage tourists may explore the details of the Buffalo Soldiers among the artifacts of the surviving forts in the Mountain, Pecos, and Forts Trail Regions, including Fort McKavett, Fort Griffin, and Fort Lancaster State Historic Sites, Fort Clark in Brackettville, Fort Richardson State Park and Historic Site, Fort Concho National Historic Landmark, and Fort Davis National Historic Site.    

Return to Our Stories

Add new comment

This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.