Davis, Benjamin Oliver, 1877–1970, American general, b. Washington, D.C. After studying (1897–98) at Howard Univ., Davis served as a lieutenant in the Spanish-American War and in 1899 enlisted in the regular army as a private. He subsequently rose through years of service to become (1940) the first African-American general in the U.S. army. After the World War II he served as assistant inspector general. He retired in 1948.
See M. Fletcher, America's First Black General (1989).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.