HONORING THOSE WHO SERVED
In the early 1840’s, west Texas pioneer Hugh Stephenson established a small community just south of El Paso on an acquired land grant, calling his property Concordia after his childhood home in Missouri. The site later served as temporary quarters for Fort Bliss, known at the time as Camp Concordia. The site also became the final resting place for Stephenson’s wife, Juana Ascárate de Stephenson, who died when a deer she had raised from a fawn fatally gored her. Juana’s burial was one of the first to establish an official Concordia Cemetery in 1856, now a Texas Historic Cemetery. During the late 1800’s, Concordia Cemetery served as burial grounds for many El Pasoans, including pioneers, civic leaders, gunfighters, and war veterans.
Perhaps some of the most historical war veterans buried in Concordia are Buffalo Soldiers, members of four regiments of African American soldiers who served on the frontier after the end of the Civil War. The remains of over forty Buffalo Soldiers are known to be buried at Concordia, resulting in the establishment of the cemetery’s Buffalo Soldier Memorial, a handsome dedication of bronze plaques, granite memorial markers, and native stone that commemorate the military service of these unique individuals and the contribution the Buffalo Soldier regiments made to the history of Texas.
Buffalo Soldier Memorial at Concordia Cemetery