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Buffalo Soldier exhibit unveiled

September 16, 2000

Buffalo Soldier exhibit unveiled



By DAN KULIN / Staff Writer


On today's date in 1891 Hagerstown native and Buffalo Soldier Cpl. William Othello Wilson received the Medal of Honor for braving hostile Indians in South Dakota to get help for a wagon train under siege.

On Saturday, Wilson was honored again with the unveiling of an exhibit panel telling the story of his bravery.

The panel stands on the Medal of Honor Triangle, a small grass island at the intersection of Pennsylvania Avenue, Forest Drive and Jonathan and Charles streets in Hagerstown. The memorial is about one block north of Wilson's former residence on West North Street.

"It's good for this community. So many people don't think about the history," said Wilson's daughter, Anna V. Jones, 88, of Hagerstown. "Now when people are walking or riding by they can see and think this is someone who brought history back to Hagerstown.

"It's very special," said Jones, who was joined by more than 70 people for the noon unveiling ceremony.

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Retired Lt. Gen. Joe Ballard, who spoke at the ceremony, said the exhibit on the triangle "remembers a true American hero."

Wilson was the last soldier to win the Medal of Honor for an act on American soil, Ballard said.

"I hope he reminds us of the bravery each and every one of us is capable of," he said.

"His achievements and legacy need to be documented and promoted," said Stan Brown, president of Brothers United Who Dare To Care Inc. The Hagerstown community group coordinated the improvements to the triangle with the William Othello Wilson Commemorative Committee.

The new sign cost about $2,300 and was paid for with a grant from the Washington County Gaming Commission, Brown said.

Hagerstown Mayor Robert E. Bruchey II read a proclamation during the Saturday ceremony making it William Othello Wilson Day in the city.

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