Although not exactly a monument, this outdoor sign tells a limited version of the story of the US Army’s “Buffalo Soldiers”, who were the Black men of the 24th and 25th Infantry Regiments, along with the soldiers in the Ninth and Tenth Cavalry Regiments. (A second sign explains the US Cavalry division more generally.) Black soldiers made up about 10% of the Army from 1869 to 1898, but were commanded almost entirely by white officers during that time.
In the 1870s, these soldiers spent most of their time serving in isolated posts in the American West, performing the same duties as other units. This involved the warfare of control against Native Americans, to finish “pacifying” the West for settlers, and then maintaining order for the Federal government: making sure Indigenous people stayed on reservations (except to hunt), and keeping white intruders out of their reservations.
With the US declaring war on Spain in Cuba in 1898 and then in the Philippines in 1899, Buffalo Soldiers started serving in the Presidio in 1899. Come learn more of their story.