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San Angelo NAACP Buffalo Soldier Memorial Project celebrates 'Blessing of the Land'

The event happened at 10 a.m. Feb. 4 and a performance by the Houston Ebony Opera Guild is scheduled for 6 p.m.
Credit: Morgan McGrath

SAN ANGELO, Texas — The Buffalo Soldiers served in the United States Army in the late 1800s during a time of tension and unrest. 

In San Angelo, a group of these Buffalo Soldiers fought at Old Fort Concho and now in 2023, they are being remembered with a memorial project. 

At 10 a.m. Feb. 4, community members gathered at Ave. D and Oakes St. for a "Blessing of the Land" dedication. 

Even in the windy morning, a large group listened to prayers, speakers and a performance by the Houston Ebony Opera Guild. 

"We've worked very hard over the last nine months or so to get this done and we're ready to start constructing," San Angelo NAACP Buffalo Soldier Memorial founder Sherley Spears said. 

Credit: Morgan McGrath

The memorial will soon be filled with greenery, benches and an 8-foot tall statue but for now it holds a single tree dedicated to a late Fort Concho employee. 

"We're blessing the land today in honor of one of our fallen members and that was Evelyn Lemons who was a historian at Fort Concho but very much part of the project," Spears said. 

"...From her, we were able to get a lot of the factual information about the Buffalo Soldiers," she added. 

Lemons also worked as an adjunct professor at Angelo State University and her family was in attendance at the memorial. 

Various songs were performed by the Houston Ebony Opera Guild, an African American choir who want to serve a diverse group of people. 

Credit: Morgan McGrath

The group will also be performing at 6 p.m. Feb. 4 at the San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts during a fundraiser dinner and money raised will benefit the Buffalo Soldiers project. 

Go to facebook.com/events for more information on the opera performance and SanAngeloNAACPBuffaloSoldierMemorial to learn more on the memorial project. 

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