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Black History

BLACK HISTORY FACT: Cathay Williams

Cathay Williams was the first and only female Buffalo soldier. She was born in September of 1844 in Independence, Missouri and became a soldier in 1866.  She passed as a man for two years until a doctor discovered that she was a woman, which led to her getting discharged.

She was the first black woman to enlist, and the only documented woman to serve in the United States Army posing as a man during the American Indian War.  She enlisted in the army under the pseudonym William Cathay and John Williams.  She was a private, cook, and a seamstress in the 38th U.S. Infantry Regiment, U.S. Army.

Cathay died of an unknown cause in Trinidad, Colorado in 1893, 25 years after she was discharged,.

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