Black veteran honored for war bond sales

January 11th, 1945

On this day in 1945, Hugh McElroy, decorated black veteran, was honored by Henry Morganthau Jr., United States secretary of the treasury, for participating in bond drives as a speaker and poster model. McElroy was reportedly the first African American whose picture appeared as an advertisement for United States war bonds. McElroy was born in Kentucky in 1884. In 1898 he lied about his age and enlisted in the Tenth United States Cavalry. He served in Cuba in the Spanish-American War and afterwards in the Philippine Insurrection and on the Pershing expedition into Mexico. During World War I he landed in France with the 317th Engineers. The much-decorated veteran retired in 1927 to Houston. In 1968 he and his oldest son rescued two children from a burning house near his Houston home. The Texas Senate commended the McElroys for their bravery. McElroy died in 1971.

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Black veteran honored for war bond sales

January 11th, 1945

On this day in 1945, Hugh McElroy, decorated black veteran, was honored by Henry Morganthau Jr., United States secretary of the treasury, for participating in bond drives as a speaker and poster model. McElroy was reportedly the first African American whose picture appeared as an advertisement for United States war bonds. McElroy was born in Kentucky in 1884. In 1898 he lied about his age and enlisted in the Tenth United States Cavalry. He served in Cuba in the Spanish-American War and afterwards in the Philippine Insurrection and on the Pershing expedition into Mexico. During World War I he landed in France with the 317th Engineers. The much-decorated veteran retired in 1927 to Houston. In 1968 he and his oldest son rescued two children from a burning house near his Houston home. The Texas Senate commended the McElroys for their bravery. McElroy died in 1971.

«   Previous Next   »

Related Handbook of Texas Articles

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Get a Piece of Texas History in Your Inbox

With more than 27,000 articles about Texas history, the Texas State Historical Association's Handbook of Texas is the largest online encyclopedia about all things Texas. Now you can celebrate the history of Texas every day by activating your free subscription to Texas Day by Day. Each day's email tells a little bit more of the story of Texas and links to our collection of more than 27,000 articles. It's one of the best ways to learn more about Texas history — in only 15 minutes a day!

Activate your free subscription to Texas Day by Day and you can:

  • Explore Texas history each day in bite-sized pieces conveniently delivered to your inbox each morning
  • Astound your friends with your Texas history prowess
  • Get in-depth looks at some of the overlooked events and landmarks in Texas history
  • Discover new places to explore in the Lone Star State
Get your Texas Day by Day delivered straight to your inbox: