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Buell, Don Carlos (23 March 1818–19 November 1898), soldier and businessman, was born near Marietta, Ohio, the son of Salmon D. Buell and Eliza (maiden name unknown), farmers. After his father’s death in 1823, the boy lived mostly in Lawrenceburg, Indiana, with an uncle, George P. Buell, who got him an appointment to West Point in 1837. Graduating in the lower half of his 1841 class, Buell was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Third Infantry. He served in the Seminole War and was promoted to first lieutenant on 18 June 1846. In November 1851 he married Margaret Hunter Mason, a widow. They had no children....

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Don Carlos Buell. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-9979).

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Burnham, Frederick Russell (11 May 1861–01 September 1947), explorer, scout, and miner, was born in Tivoli, Minnesota, the son of Reverend Otway Burnham, a Congregational minister and missionary, and Rebecca Russell. One family story has it that his mother left him among corn stalks for an entire day while their settlement was under an Indian attack during the 1862 war with the Sioux. Certainly not proven, this story has an interesting ring to it, since Burnham was to spend much of his life hiding or escaping from American Indians or South African peoples during his career as a scout....

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Flipper, Henry Ossian (21 March 1856–03 May 1940), soldier and engineer, was born in Thomasville, Georgia, the son of Festus Flipper and Isabelle (maiden name unknown), slaves. During the Civil War and Reconstruction he was educated in American Missionary Association schools and in 1873 gained admission to Atlanta University. That year Flipper also obtained an appointment to the U.S. Military Academy through the auspices of Republican Representative James C. Freeman. He was not the first African American to attend West Point, as Michael Howard and James Webster Smith preceded him in 1870, but neither graduated. Flipper subsequently endured four years of grueling academic instruction and ostracism from white classmates before graduating fiftieth in a class of sixty-four on 14 June 1877. He was commissioned second lieutenant in the all-black Tenth U.S. Cavalry, and the following year recounted his academy experience in an autobiography, ...

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Archibald Bulloch Roosevelt Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-97680).

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Roosevelt, Archibald Bulloch (09 April 1894–13 October 1979), businessman and military officer, was born in Washington, D.C., the son of Theodore Roosevelt, then a U.S. civil service commissioner, and Edith Kermit Carow Roosevelt. In 1901 Roosevelt’s father succeeded the assassinated William McKinley as U.S. president. A rambunctious youth, Archie made headlines by sliding down a White House banister into one diplomatic reception and by arriving at another on stilts....