Steven Reidburn(’08): Buffalo Soldier Exhibit
Steven Reidburn(’08) is currently the site supervisor for Fort Buford in Williston, N.D. The former vector-control officer in Jamestown has been responsible for the 125-year-old military site, winning awards since he took the reins in 2010. He’s also responsible for getting the site’s early black soldiers recognized for their role in the Dakotas and for their early Masonic presence at the fort.
On May 28, 2016, the State Historical Society of North Dakota installed an exhibit that Reidburn introduced, helped research and worked on for six years. It features the trek of the Buffalo Soldiers at Fort Buford, from when they came and where they wound up between 1891 and 1897. The history is exceptional. The fact that two black regiments were in North Dakota is unusual, but many stayed after the fort was decommissioned, which is even more surprising.
Reidburn has been working to get a Buffalo Soldier interpretive display inside the Missouri-Yellowstone Confluence Interpretive Center, and with the Missouri-Yellowstone Confluence Interpretive Center staff and the professional expertise at SHSND, much of that has now been accomplished.
Reidburn is a member of Fort Seward in Jamestown and the 1883 Stutsman County Courthouse Committee. He is the SHSND’s licensed black powder safety expert, traveling to historic North Dakota sites overseeing weapons discharges during historic re-enactments. He has been a 35-year volunteer/Civil War re-enactor with the 20th Infantry at Fort Seward and the 6th Infantry in Williston. Reidburn is a graduated from University of Jamestown with a bachelor’s degree in History/Political Science.