After being honorably discharged from the Navy, Allensworth operated two restaurants with his brother William, taught in Freedman’s Bureau schools in Kentucky, was ordained as a minister, and served as Kentucky’s only black delegate to the Republican National conventions of 1880 and 1884. After a two-year campaign in which he solicited the support of Congressmen John R. Lynch of Mississippi and Senator Joseph E. Brown of Georgia, President Grover Cleveland signed his appointment as Chaplain of the 24th Infantry Regiment. While serving at Fort Bayard, New Mexico Territory, Allensworth wrote Outline of Course of Study, and the Rules Governing Post Schools of Ft. Bayard, N.M., which became the standard Army manual on the education of enlisted personnel.
On April 7, 1906, after twenty years of service, he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant colonel making him the first black officer to receive this rank. In 1908 retired Chaplain Allensworth and four other black men formed the all-black town of Allensworth, California. Six years later, in 1914, Allensworth was crossing a Los Angeles street when he was killed by a motorcycle.
Source: Charles B. Alexander, Battles and Victories of Allen Allensworth, A. M., Ph. D., Lieutenant-Colonel, Retired, U. S. Army (Boston: Sherman, French and Company, 1914).
BlackPast.org is an independent non-profit corporation 501(c)(3). It has no affiliation with the University of Washington. BlackPast.org is supported in part by a grant from Humanities Washington, a state-wide non-profit organization supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the state of Washington, and contributions from individuals and foundations.