Camp Atascadero: when the Buffalo soldiers came to San Luis Obispo County
Historian Erik Brun shares fascinating insights about U.S. Army joint field maneuvers in Atascadero that included the legendary U.S. Army’s 9th Cavalry, known as Buffalo Soldiers.
Regular Army and National Guard artillery and infantry units joined with the Buffalo Soldiers for military exercises on the Henry Ranch in 1904.
This was nine years before the founding of the City of Atascadero in 1913 when Edward Gardner Lewis, a magazine publisher from the East, founded Atascadero as a utopian, planned colony.
Gen. Arthur MacArthur and his staff had the responsibility of turning the quiet Henry ranch into a busy campground for the 5000 men and 1000 horses who would participate in the two-week encampment, as well as for laying the groundwork for future encampments.
The creation of the Atascadero encampment included extensive planning, road building and maintenance, water supply, transportation of troops and animals, public relations and the introduction of latest military technology.
The Atascadero Encampment was a biannual event, until the advent of Lewis’s new town of Atascadero.
Catch Erik Brun’s presentation live: 6 p.m. February 28th at the Unitarian Universalist Church, 2201 Lawton, San Luis Obispo 93401
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