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The main object in fixing upon the foregoing as the distribution for troops serving in this department has been to secure the most effective supervision of the various tribes of Indians located on their reservations, as shown by the following table:
Indian agencies and agents in this department and approximate number of each tribe.
Colorado Chas.S.McNich-Parker, Yuma Yuma, Ariz..... Mojave...
Mojave,at Needles 650
Chimehuevis.... 140 Hualapai Henry P.Ewing, Hackberry, Ariz. Hackberry,Ariz. Hualapai
250 teacher. Navajo....... Geo. W. Hayslet. Fort Defiance, Gallup, N. Mex. Navajo
Moqui Pueblo 2,050
Papago Nomadic. 2,046 San Carlos.... Capt.W.J.Nich- San Carlos, Ariz. San Carlos, Ariz. Coyotero Apache.. 647 Olson, Sey
San Carlos Apache 1, 288 enth U.S.Cav
Tonto Apache 863 alry.
White River.. A.A.Armstrong. Fort Apache, Fort Apache, White Mountain.. 1,849
Southern Ute. Jos. O. Smith.... Ignacio, La Ignacio, La Moache.
Plata County, Plata County, Capote...
White River Ute..
White River Ute.. Shoshone.....H.G. Nickerson. Shoshone Agen- Fort Washakie, Shoshone (or cy, Fremont Wyo.
NOTE.— The area of this department is 522,385 square miles; of this there are 36,642 square miles of Indian reservations. Population: White, 880,983; Indian, 53,345.
It will be observed that nearly all of the posts are placed on or in the immediate vicinity of large reservations. The exceptions, Forts Douglas, D. A. Russell, and Logan, are at important railroad centers, rendering their garrisons quickly available for emergencies in any direction.
The Indians within the department have continued at peace and have made advancement in agriculture and stock raising under good management, so that troops have been actually called out but three times, viz, from Fort Wingate in August, Fort DuChesne in November, and Fort Grant in April. In all of these cases the difficulty arose between individual white men and Indians, generally through cards and whisky, and white men were the aggressors.
No general friction resulted.
The call from Fort Huachuca resulted also through cards and whisky, between cowboys on the American side and Mexicans. One American was shot near the line by Mexicans after his arrest, and threats of retaliation were made by the American cowboys, but the prompt appearance of troops and judicious action by Capt. H. H. Wright, Ninth Cavalry, their commander, prevented further violence.
On March 2, 1900, General Torres of the Mexican army, and in pursuit of Yaqui Indians, reported that several parties of Yaquis were making toward the American line, apparently intending to cross. The troops at Huachuca were placed in readiness for instant action to apprehend and disarm any who might cross the line, but no crossing was made.
Another quarrel between a small party of white men and Indians, supposed to be Navajos, occurred on November 13, 1899, at Canyon Diablo, Arizona, over a dispute about ownership of a horse, in which 1 white man and 2 Indians were reported killed and some on both sides wounded. The troops at Wingate and Grant were held ready for instant support of the sheriff, but he was able to handle the matter without assistance, no general or tribal animosity being aroused.
In my tour of inspection I was impressed by the excellent progress being made toward civilization by the Apaches, under the excellent management of Capt. W. J. Nicholson, Seventh Cavalry, along the Gila River, with agency at San Carlos. I found them largely and successfully engaged in agriculture, and saw large numbers of men, as well as women, at work in the fields-most unusual for Indians. I was also told by railroad officials that they could not employ better men for railroad labor than those Apache Indians. In view of these facts and of the assurance by Captain Nicholson of the absolute loyalty and efficiency of his Indian police, I recommended the withdrawal of all the troops from San Carlos Agency instead of repairing that post.
Schemes for theoretical instruction were prepared and approved, as required by Army Regulations 230, and the work accomplished is shown by Appendices Cand D. From these reports it is manifest that renewed interest in the lyceum method of professional study has resulted from the many subjects presented by a state of war under modern conditions, and all to the great advantage of the service.
A progressive course of practical instruction was prepared and ordered, as required by Army Regulations, covering small-arms practice, signal instruction, litter bearers, and first-aid drill, as well as close and extended order drills, calisthenic and gymnastic training, and also provided for instruction in minor tactics and field problems suited to the organizations and their local conditions.
This course is now being carried out, as shown by the monthly reports received, and as fully as can be expected in view of the frequent changes of garrisons and other disadvantages incidental to a state of foreign war, and the necessary subordination of the home service to its interests.
In addition to the usual service, twenty-three companies have been prepared and sent abroad from this department for service in the Orient. This work involves a transformation. Weakly men and those near the close of terms must be withdrawn and others supplied by transfer enlistment. The required changes of mounts and equipment are equally sweeping, while to all this must be added the many transfers of public property and supplies at posts resulting from the changes of garrisons.
Destructive fires have occurred in the department as follows: Fort Washakie, December 1, destroyed gymnasium built by labor of troops.
Fort Wingate, December 5, destroyed post sawmill; loss, $6,000.
Fort Du Chesne, December 8 and 13, destroyed barracks of Troops I and K, Ninth Cavalry; cost unknown.
Fort Grant, March 20, destroyed commanding officer's stable; cost unknown.
Fort Apache, June 15, destroyed about 400 tons of hay; loss, about $3.000.
By the heroic conduct of the troops all of these fires were limited to the buildings first ignited. In some cases the fire systems were reported as inadequate or ineffective, and the question of their improvement has received due attention.
There are many things to be considered in this connection, such as sufficiency of water supply, the pressure to be obtained in mains, and whether by gravitation or by pumping plants, etc. The present means have been provided from time to time-piecemeal and by different officers—and it is not strange that they are found more or less defective in the opinions of still other officers, and especially in reporting on fires calling for explanation.
In some cases the reports have omitted to acknowledge the aid so derived in preventing the spread of the fire to other buildings. On this subject it should be noted that old wooden buildings, and especially unpainted shingle roofs, as wellas everything combustible, become practically as inflammable as gunpowder under the influence of the hot sun in this semidesert region, and it is doubtful if, with the best appliances, any of the buildings lost could have been saved.
If the destructive cigarette could be abolished, with the careless use of matches, it would do more toward safety than the best fire apparatus.
Measures are now in progress looking to improvements in fire appliances at Forts Du Chesne, Washakie, and Wingate.
The excellent conduct of officers has been noteworthy and universal. My thanks are especially due to each member of my personal and department staff for uniform zeal and efficiency in the discharge of every duty. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. C. MERRIAM, Brigadier-General, U. S. A.
REPORT OF MAJ. GEN. WILLIAM R. SHAFTER, U. S. VOLUN
TEERS, COMMANDING THE DEPARTMENT OF CALIFORNIA.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF CALIFORNIA,
San Francisco, Cal., September 14, 1900. The ADJUTANT-GENERAL UNITED STATES ARMY,
Washington, D. C. Sir: I have the honor to submit the following report for the Department of California for the year ending August 31, 1900, during which time I have commanded the department:
Affairs connected with the military service have generally moved satisfactorily. There have been but few troops for duty in the department, and they have been fully employed in caring for and guarding the public property at their respective stations, so that it has been impossible to have any military exercises beyond the instruction of recruits, and of men in small bodies, not larger than a company. During this year there have been shipped through this city 1,368 officers and 39,003 enlisted men; and returned to the United States, volunteers and regulars, 709 officers and 13,291 enlisted men, making a total of 2,077 officers and 52,294 enlisted men. This includes 42 officers and 1,116 men of the Marine Corps, 5,857 recruits, 1,030 men of the Hospital Corps, and 161 men in the Signal Corps. There have also been shipped to the Philippines and China 5,131 horses and mules. This great number of men has been rapidly and safely transported to and from this department without the loss of a single human life and but very few animals. This fact speaks volumes for the painstaking care exercised by the officers having the matter of transportation in charge. Just prior to the return of the volunteers from the Philippines last year, a camp was established at the Presidio for their reception, and also for the recruits going out. This camp has been preserved and used by the troops going out recently, and will be ready for the use of those soon to return. The health of this camp has been phenomenal. With the exception of a few cases of smallpox, scarlet fever, and measles, there has been no serious sickness. Among the large number of recruits that were at the Presidio last fall, 12,000 at one time, there were not more than half a dozen cases of typhoid fever, none of which originated here. I attribute this to the good judgment exercised in selecting the grounds, and to the care and attention given to the proper sanitation of the camp, which was done under the charge of medical officers specially detailed for that purpose, notably, Col. Charles R. Greenleaf, assistant surgeon-general, and Capt. James M. Kennedy, assistant surgeon.
Attention is called to the very low death rate for the department, which is only 4.18 per thousand for the entire department outside of the general hospital, as against 6.63 per thousand for the previous year. Deaths from disease, 2.92 per thousand; previous year, 6.12. The percentage at the general hospital is 14.39 per thousand admissions, a rate less than that in the city of San Francisco.
Referring to the report of the chief surgeon, I have to say that so far there has been no difficulty in properly caring for all the sick that have arrived here and that recently additional provision has been made by the erection of tents capable of holding from 250 to 300 more. The
general hospital at the Presidio is a most thoroughly equipped and ably conducted establishment.
Attention is especially invited to that part of the report of the chief surgeon which refers to the medical examination of men upon muster out, showing the large number of men claiming disability in which none was found; also the large number claiming disability which was found not to have been contracted in the line of duty.
Attention is invited to the arduous and exacting duties of the pay department during the past year, which was most satisfactorily performed.
Since the departure of the four batteries, Third Artillery, for Manila, and until the return of the four batteries now there, it will be impossible to do more than keep the guns clean; this it is possible to do with the force now here. The increase in the number of guns in the permanent fortifications makes it absolutely necessary that a considerably larger force of artillery should be stationed in this harbor. There should be at least, for the proper care of the guns and emplacements, one battery at Angel Island, two at Fort Baker, three at Presidio, one at Fort Miley (Point Lobos), and one at San Diego.
The report of the judge-advocate shows a considerable number of trials for the number of men stationed in the department, but when it is taken into consideration that a large number of these trials were of men belonging to regiments passing through, it is remarkably small, and the offenses are not serious.
The work of the quartermaster's department has been very great and has been most efficiently performed. I desire to especially invite the attention of the Adjutant-General of the Army to the large number of animals, horses and mules, that have been purchased in the open market by the chief quartermaster, Colonel Marshall, in person and by other officers. In my opinion it is the best and most economical way to make purchases. It has proved eminently satisfactory here, and in one case, where the contractor, Mr. White, failed to complete deliveries under his contract, instead of calling upon his bondsmen horses were purchased by the quartermaster at about $10 per head less than the contract price.
The practice which was recently inaugurated of making contracts for forage for short periods of time, at present quarterly, has so far worked advantageously to the Government, and I believe it will probably be found at the end of the year to have been advantageous to the Government.
In the engineer's department there has been little work to do.
The report of the signal officer shows that considerable work has been done in the harbor in connecting the posts and various batteries by wire. The system of wireless telegraphy between Fort Mason and Alcatraz has been satisfactorily operated, but I doubt its practicability.
The reports of officers in charge of the various staff departments are herewith inclosed.
I desire to say that every officer has performed his duty to my entire satisfaction, and that they have been constant and painstaking in the discharge of their various and important duties, and all are deserving of this commendation. In this I wish to include the depots of the quartermaster and commissary departments, who have performed so satisfactorily the great work set to them.