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Buford, Abraham (18 January 1820–09 June 1884), horseman and soldier, was born in Woodford County, Kentucky, the son of William Buford, a stockman, and Frances Walker Kirtley. The youth left Centre College in 1837 to accept an appointment to West Point, where he graduated in 1841 next to last in a class of fifty-two. Brevetted a second lieutenant in the First Dragoons, he received his regular commission on 12 April 1842. Satisfactory service on the western frontier brought promotion to first lieutenant on 6 December 1846. The previous year he had married Amanda Harris; they had one child....

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Jackson, William Hicks (01 October 1835–30 March 1903), army officer and horse breeder, was born in Paris, Tennessee, the son of Alexander Jackson, a doctor, and Mary W. Hurt. William grew up in Jackson, Tennessee, to which his parents had moved while he was still young, and went on to attend West Tennessee College. Prior to graduation there, however, he accepted an appointment to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, entering in 1852 and graduating four years later. Commissioned a second lieutenant, Jackson was stationed with a regiment of mounted rifles in Texas, and served in operations against the American Indians in New Mexico....