Memorial Day Weekend is sit aside as a time to honor the men and women who served their country. Not to be overlooked is Arlington National Cemetery, located in Washington. The stone memorial garden is the final resting place to the men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice.
Here are important sites of American heroes who made the United States better through their service.
1. BLACK AMERICAN WEST MUSEUM & HERITAGE CENTER » 3091 California St. » Denver, CO 80205
One-third of the working cowboys in the Old West were African Americans. Their forgotten story comes to life at the Black American West Museum. Brave men and women like frontier scout Jim Beckworth, rodeo hero Bill Pickett, and pioneer Mary Field, who at age 60 was still riding shotgun on a stagecoach, are just some of the fascinating heroes featured at the museum.
(303) 292-2566 www.Blackamericanwest.org
- BUFFALO SOLDIERS NATIONAL MUSEUM » 1834 Southmore St. » Houston, TX 77004
The museum preserves and promotes the history, traditions, and contributions of the Buffalo Soldiers through artifacts, documents, videos, prints, and other historical memorabilia. (713) 943-8920 www.buffalosoldiermuseum.com
3. THE A. PHILIP RANDOLPH PULLMAN PORTER MUSEUM » 10406 S. Maryland Ave. Chicago, IL 60628
This unique museum is located in the Historic Pullman District in Chicago, Illinois. It was named for those hard-working men and (later women) who were part of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters (BSCP) union. The films and exhibits tell the history of the railroad workers and Asa Philip Randolph, the chief organizer and co-founder of the BSCP. The organization was the first African American labor union in the country to win a collective bargaining agreement.
(773) 928-3935 » www.aphiliprandolphmuseum.com
- THE ROBERT GOULD SHAW MEMORIAL » 14 Beacon St. » Boston, MA 02109
The Robert Gould Shaw Memorial was built in 1897 in honor of the Massachusetts 54th Regiment, the first all-black regiment recruited in the North to fight for the Union army during the Civil War. The men of the 54th Regiment led the valiant attack on Fort Wagner, S.C., on July 18, 1863, as depicted in the movie Glory, which starred Matthew Broderick, Denzel Washington, Morgan Freeman, and Andre Braugher. (617) 742-5415 www.who2.com/robertgouldshaw
5. THE HARRIET TUBMAN HOME » 180 South St. » Auburn, NY 13021
The Harriet Tubman Home preserves the legacy of “The Moses of Her People” in the place where she lived and died in freedom. In 1896, Tubman purchased at auction the 25-acre parcel for $1,450.
Some articles of furniture and a portrait that belonged to Tubman are also on display. Ms. Tubman served in the Civil War and later fought for and finally received a pension for her service. (315) 252-2081 www.nyhistory.com/harriettubman
- Tuskegee Airmen Memorial » Waterboro, SC
It is interesting to find this memorial to the Tuskegee Airmen in Waterboro, South Carolina. This famed group of African American pilots of World War II took their name from Tuskegee, Alabama, where they trained. However, few know the pilots of the 332nd Fight Group completed their training at the Walterboro Army Airfield, which the regional airport is now located. The 1000 pilots who flew 1,578 missions and were known as the, “Red Tails” for the painted red tail of their aircraft. The Germans called them, Schwartze Vogelmenschen, or “Black Bird Men.”
- Robert Smalls Monument » 907 Craven Street » Beaufort, SC 29901
Smalls cleverly captured the Planter, a Confederate ship during the Civil War, and sailed it past Charleston to the Union Navy, earning freedom from slavery for himself and his family. He went on to become captain of his own vessel, a state legislator, and a member of the U.S. House of Representatives.