The first African-American colonel in the U.S. military, Charles Young was born in Mays Lick, Kentucky, in 1864. He graduated from West Point and served in the military on the Great Plains and in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, the Philippines, Mexico, and Liberia. He was a prolific writer and a talented musician as well. For many years, he was the lone black military officer in the United States. Historians describe his pioneering career and the obstacles he overcame to achieve it.