The Puerto Rican Experience in the U.S. Military:
A Century of Unheralded Service

Puerto Ricans started fighting as auxiliary forces to the U.S. military in 1898. Since then, hundreds of thousands of Puerto Ricans have served in every small and major conflict in which the United States has participated. This publication intends to show the scope of the Puerto Rican experience in the U.S. military without lionizing nor demeaning it. This project hopes to inspire the public and scholars to look into this under-studied phenomenon.

PR Military

Hugnan, Korea, December 24, 1950. 65th Infantry troops last to evacuate besieged port.
Officially, Puerto Ricans started serving in the United States military in 1899 with the...
1897 - San Juan, Derribo de murallas
El Grito de Lares and the Demobilization of the Puerto Rican Militias under Spain El...
Bombing of El Morro Castle
The War with Spain or The Spanish-American-Cuban-Filipino War of 1898 In 1898, the United...
Spanish soldiers in the Plaza de Ponce in 1898 during mass.
In the aftermath of the Spanish-Cuban-Filipino-American War of 1898 , the United States...
1899 Postcard - American Colonial Troops
After the American invasion in 1898, Puerto Rican elites quickly volunteered the...

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Resources by the Author


Soldiers of the Nation: Military Service and Modern Puerto Rico, 1868-1952.

Franqui-Rivera, H. Soldiers of the Nation: Military Service and Modern Puerto Rico, 1868-1952. University of Nebraska Press.


Franqui-Rivera, H. Fighting on Two Fronts: The Experience of the Puerto Rican Soldiers in the Korean War. Centro Press..

Book Excerpts

Puerto Rican Soldiers in the Korean War: The Battle of Chosin Reservoir” in Centro Voices, Spring 2019.

“‘A New Day Has Dawned for Porto Rico’s Jíbaro’: Manhood, Race, Military Service and Self-Government during WWI” in Latino Studies, Palgrave, Vol. 13.2 (2015).

"National Mythologies: U.S. Citizenship for the People of Puerto Rico and Military Service” in Memorias: Revista Digital de Historia y Arqueología desde el Caribe, Universidad del Norte, Barranquilla Colombia, No.21 (2013).

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