Black History Month: ABMC Honors WWI US soldier buried in France

Published: 7 February 2024

via the American Battle Monuments Commission

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From baseball field to battlefield

There is a story behind each headstone at ABMC cemeteries.

Before enlisting in the Army in June 1917, Ernest Biggers was an outfielder for the Houston Black Buffaloes.

He sailed to France with the 816th Pioneer Infantry Regiment one of over 40n units of this type, of which twenty were comprised of African-Americans.

Trained in Infantry tactics and engineering skills they were Intended to serve as combat engineers, but in actuality many found themselves employed in road building and repair tasks.

Pvt. Biggers died of pneumonia and meningitis on March 13, 1919. He is buried at St. Mihiel American Cemetery, France.

This #BlackHistoryMonth, let us remember and honor all African American service members who served in uniform, during World War I and all wars.

Today, ABMC commemorates more than 2,000 Black soldiers at its cemeteries. Learn more on

Whose legacy are you honoring this #BlackHistoryMonth? Learn more about ABMC cemeteries and memorials: #militaryhistory #ww1 #worldwar1 #veteran #baseball

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