The September monthly meeting was held at the Anacapa Restaurant and the guest speaker was Sgt. Major (Retired) J. J. Jones, in full uniform of the Buffalo Soldier of the Indian War era. Sgt. Major Jones and his wife Diane founded the Buffalo Soldiers of the Indian Wars 1866 – 1890 organization with the sole purpose of educating the public to the huge and mostly overlooked contribution the Buffalo Soldiers made to the settlement of Arizona as well as the entire southwest. He wore the Garrison uniform the Buffalo Soldiers wore for everyday activities and also brought exhibits of a saddle, sword, rifle, dress uniform and pistol for everyone to see.
After covering the history of the courageous Buffalo Soldiers, he portrayed, in the first person, George Jordan, a Buffalo Soldier and Medal of Honor recipient. Jordan was born a slave in rural Tennessee in 1847 and retired in Nebraska after serving a 31 year Army career. While leading a 25 man unit guarding a cattle drive, Sgt. Jordan protected a civilian settlement of women and children from an imminent attack by the Apache warrior Victorio. Although his unit was outnumbered by 4 – 1, they repelled four separate charges and force Victorio to retreat. For his actions, Sgt. Jordan received the Medal of Honor. The Buffalo Soldiers were so nicknamed by the American Indians because they were “the color of buffalo, had hair like the buffalo and fought like a wounded buffalo”.
Submitted by Michael McVeigh, Corte Bella Vet