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Since the close of the fiscal year, that is to say on May 6, 1900, here were withdrawn from Porto Rico the headquarters and one quadron of the Fifth Cavalry, one battalion of the Eleventh Infantry, nd a considerable detachment of the Hospital Corps and another of ne Signal Corps.

The only events of importance of a military character occurring durng the year were, (1) the utilization of a very large part of the miliiry establishment as a Hurricane Relief Corps; (2) the holding of lections for local officials throughout the department, under military upervision; (3) the transfer to the civil authority of the control and Government of the island (this took place on May 1, 1900, in pursuance of orders of the Secretary of War); and (4) the enlistment of a mounted pattalion of native infantry.

HURRICANE RELIEF WORK.

In the report of the commanding general for last year will be found on last page a paragraph briefly mentioning the calamity which had just befallen Porto Rico. The effects of this blow were very extensive and far-reaching; indeed there can not be full recovery from the damage to houses, fences, and vegetation for several years. Some 2,700 human beings perished in this disaster, and many have since died "who would now be alive but for the hunger, destitution, and disease that directly or indirectly was caused by the cyclone of St. Ciriacoone of the most appalling storms that ever visited any land.

The relief conducted by the army consisted in the distribution of some 30,000,000 rations (1 pound each) to the famishing natives of this island and extended over a period of almost a year. Besides, relief work was provided for the idle workman so that self-supporting wages could be earned and the facilities for communication between the towns improved. Upon this branch of work nearly one million dollars was allotted by the Secretary of War, and the funds have been, or are being, applied in road construction.

The chief surgeon of the department was president of a board of charities charged with the supervision of food and medical relief, while the chief engineer of the department, as president of the board of public works, organized the road relief, and these two officers have conducted this relief work to the present time.

While the help so generously given by the United States has been the means of saving thousands, indeed many tens of thousands of lives, yet it did not reach every individual who required it.

The blow fell upon Porto Rico very shortly after it had been the scene of conflict of hostile armies, which had resulted in the expulsion of the former government and establishment of American control. The island, as respects its social and domestic institutions, etc., legislative, judicial, and executive functions was in a state of transition. Municipal government could scarcely be said to exist. In many towns municipal treasuries were empty or bankrupt, and political rivalries and animosities ran high. When the time came for these governmental instrumentalities in the towns to render material, substantial aid to the stricken and helpless of their own people, they were powerless in a great many cases, and there were some individual instances of hunger and suffering which the army relief agencies established in every town could not find out or succor, notwithstandelections held on June 16 passed off quietly and the new officers bare been installed without excitement.

SCHOOLS.

The schools of the department are in an encouraging condition. The have been systematized during the year, salaries have been equalizfor teachers, new schools have been established, and new furnitures books have been widely distributed. There are approximately 163, children of school age in the department. Of these there is an enn: ment in school of 21,303 and an average attendance of 16,512. In 1 opinion, here lies the hope of the island.

I respectfully invite special attention to reports of the department staff for detailed information regarding their departments.

In concluding this report I desire to bear testimony to the fidelity zeal, and efficiency with which they have all performed the ardu. 3 duties of their respective offices. Very respectfully,

SAMUEL M. WHITSIDE, Colonel Tenth U. S. Cavalry, Commanding.

REPORT OF BRIG. GEN. GEORGE W. DAVIS, U. S. VOLUNTEERS

COMMANDING DEPARTMENT OF PORTO RICO.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PORTO Rico,

San Juan, P. R., August 15, 1901. The ADJUTANT-GENERAL.

Sir: On the date of the last annual report of the commanding gen eral the organizations serving in this department were the same :: now, viz., the Fifth Cavalry; Eleventh Infantry; Fifth Artillery, : batteries; Signal Corps, 1 company; Hospital Corps, detachments: Porto Rico Volunteer Infantry, 4 companies.

The principal changes during the year resulted from the withdrama. from the island in March, 1900, of one squadron of the Fifth Cavalry and the recruitment of an additional battalion of Porto Rican volunteers giving to the whole a regimental organization.

The comparative strength of the command as of date August 1 for last year and the present are given in the following table:

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Relieved from duty in the department and left for New York August 5 and 6, 1900. 29 otficer an! 72'enlisted men and 325 cavalry horses, leaving in the department at this date 119 officers and 2 » enlisted men.

Since the close of the fiscal year, that is to say on May 6, 1900, there were withdrawn from Porto Rico the headquarters and one squadron of the Fifth Cavalry, one battalion of the Eleventh Infantry, and a considerable detachment of the Hospital Corps and another of the Signal Corps.

The only events of importance of a military character occurring during the year were, (1) the utilization of a very large part of the military establishment as a Hurricane Relief Corps; (2) the holding of elections for local officials throughout the department, under military supervision; (3) the transfer to the civil authority of the control and government of the island (this took place on May 1, 1900, in pursuance of orders of the Secretary of War); and (4) the enlistment of a mounted battalion of native infantry.

HURRICANE RELIEF WORK.

In the report of the commanding general for last year will be found on last page a paragraph briefly mentioning the calamity which had just befallen Porto Rico. The effects of this blow were very extensive and far-reaching; indeed there can not be full recovery from the damage to houses, fences, and vegetation for several years. Some 2,700 human beings perished in this disaster, and many have since died who would now be alive but for the hunger, destitution, and disease that directly or indirectly was caused by the cyclone of St. Ciriacoone of the most appalling storms that ever visited any land.

The relief conducted by the army consisted in the distribution of some 30,000,000 rations (1 pound each) to the famishing natives of this island and extended over a period of almost a year. Besides, relief work was provided for the idle workman so that self-supporting wages could be earned and the facilities for communication between the towns improved. Upon this branch of work nearly one million dollars was allotted by the Secretary of War, and the funds have been, or are being, applied in road construction.

The chief surgeon of the department was president of a board of charities charged with the supervision of food and medical relief, while the chief engineer of the department, as president of the board of public works, organized the road relief, and these two officers have conducted this relief work to the present time.

While the help so generously given by the United States has been the means of saving thousands, indeed many tens of thousands of lives, yet it did not reach every individual who required it.

The blow fell upon Porto Rico very shortly after it had been the scene of conflict of hostile armies, which had resulted in the expulsion of the former government and establishment of American control. The island, as respects its social and domestic institutions, etc., legislative, judicial, and executive functions was in a state of transition. Municipal government could scarcely be said to exist. In many towns municipal treasuries were empty or bankrupt, and political rivalries and animosities ran high. When the time came for these governmental instrumentalities in the towns to render material, substantial aid to the stricken and helpless of their own people, they were powerless in a great many cases, and there were some individual instances of hunger and suffering which the army relief agencies established in every town could not find out or succor, notwithstanding that every possible effort was made to relieve all who were help!

Issues of food were discontinued on July 15 last, under author of an approval by the Secretary of War of a recommendation ? cessation of these issues by the civil governor of Porto Rico and the commanding general.

The amounts earned of the allotments by the Secretary of Warf: relief work on roads to June 30, 1900, aggregate $392,139, lear: available for continued relief work the sum of $557,861, which is beina earned at the rate of about $50,000 per month.

In another report for the Secretary of War which I am preparis: I treat quite fully of all matters respecting the military gorerne: in relation to civil matters and in that paper the subject of hurricas relief will be mentioned in more detail.

ELECTIONS.

Just before the cyclone swept over the island in August, orders been given for the holding of the first election of local officials. Ti was in Adjuntas, where previously the town officials had failed t maintain a government worthy of the name, and an army officer Es been placed in charge. Rules for registration and balloting as wel a for canvassing were laid down in military orders and the election bet. on July 25, but the officer in charge permitted an informality in të procedure which caused the result to be set aside, and a new electi was ordered. Before this could be held, the storm struck the islar: and the second balloting was postponed.

In September local officials were properly elected at Adjuntas an before the middle of February, mayors, town councils, munici judges, and boards of education had been chosen and installed in i the towns of Porto Rico.

The qualifications for voters were determined by the military com mander and these, briefly stated, were the possession of a reading an writing knowledge of some language, or the would-be voter must bsn paid at least $1 in tax within the preceding eighteen months. Under such conditions the number of votes polled reached an aggregate 51,179, which is about 5% per cent of the population.

These elections were honestly held, every man who possessed t requisite qualification had no difficulty in depositing his ballot ar every vote was properly counted. Either an officer or noncommi: sioned officer of the Army was chairman of each board of registrative of supervision, and of canvassers.

These elections conducted under strict army supervision were the first ever held in the island that gave honest returns, and there is a hazard in the statement that there will never be held a fairer election

There was never present at or near a voting place an armed soldier The bayonet was conspicuous by its absence.

END OF MILITARY GOVERNMENT. The act of Congress requiring the establishment of a temporary civil government became a law on the 12th of April, and on the sth of the same month Hon. Charles H. Allen, governor-elect, arrived at San Juan. On the 1st of May be was duly installed in office with suit able ceremonies of a simple, but dignified character.

An account of those important proceedings and ceremonies is among the inclosures.

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PORTO RICAN VOLUNTEERS.

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There is now in service in Porto Rico a regiment (eight companies) k of native troops, half of whom are mounted on native horses. The 27 lieutenant-colonel (commandant), two majors, and two captains are

officers of the Regular Army. One of the lieutenants is a Porto Rican,

while the remainder of the officers are ex-officers of Volunteers or are 1962 ex-noncommissioned officers and privates of the Regular Army.

The first battalion was recruited early in the year 1899, and the

mounted battalion in the winter and spring of 1900. The men are ac armed with the new Springfield rifle and clothed like our regulars cing and other volunteers.

The experiment of using the natives as soldiers has in Porto Rico proved a very marked success, judging from the appearance of the organization as it is seen on parade, review, march, and in camp. Of course there has been no occasion for a battle test of the nerve, courage, and endurance of these men, but I believe it will prove satisfactory.

The men are usually small, weighing 10 to 15 per cent less than the average of American soldiers, but they are tough and wiry and have good endurance. They are tractable and obedient and show a willingness and anxiety to learn. They adopt the ways of the American readily and are fond of his food. While they are not habitual meat eaters, and many were almost entirely unaccustomed to it, yet all are eager for the meat component of the ration. In some cases satiety is believed to have caused intestinal disorders, but generally the native troops compare favorably with the Americans as respects health and availabilty for duty.

The mounted battalion has been a less time in service than the other, and the men have a harder task in learning their duties, because for the second battalion they must learn the work of mounted men in addition to all the rest. Very satisfactory results have been secured and both battalions are in excellent condition for service on this island or elsewhere.

The native horses (or ponies, as they are usually called) are about one-third lighter than the ordinary American horses, but as the men are all lighter the lack of weight of the mounts is not a real deficiency. These native horses cost a little less than $100 each, and their keep is much less than half as expensive at Henry Barracks than was that of the cavalry horses formerly in service at the same post.

The native horse is given a half ration of oats, and the rest of his food is native green grass. The cost at Cayey of a ration for a native horse is about 20 cents, while the cost of a full forage ration of an American cavalry horse was not less than 40 cents, including transportation in both cases; besides the native animals are immune to many diseases common here to northern horses.

Among the native soldiers there is much less drunkenness than among Americans. Absences without leave are also less frequent.

I urgently recommend the continuance of this regiment in service with a third battalion added to the present force and retaining one battalion mounted. With one battalion of regular infantry and two batteries regular artillery the island would have a sufficient military protection, and the present barrack accommodations would not require expensive extension to provide for all.

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