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law of power to command, for permission to obey the orders of the officers appointed by the President to command them.
THE RURAL GUARD.
A very efficient aid in maintaining order in the rural districts has been the rural guard. They have been industrious, well behaved, and energetic. This force, or some force of which it shall be the nucleus, is bound to be the main dependence in the thinly settled regions until conditions in the island shall have become completely normalized. The guard have learned many soldierly ways, are uniformed, courteous toward the people with whom they come in contact, and are becoming fairly drilled and are reliable.
This work, paid for from insular funds, comprises all classes of public improvements, and has been continued by me in the lines inaugurated by my predecessor. Much road building throughout the department has been done and communication with the interior facilitated. In the district of Santiago, having the largest allotment of funds from division headquarters, the work on public roads, for the first half of the year, was creditably performed by Second Lieut. M. E. Hanna, Second U. S. Cavalry, aid-de-camp. Since his relief it has been managed by the department engineer, First Lieut. R. L. Hamilton, Fifth U. S. Infantry, who has also had charge of the Santiago waterworks and street improvements, the construction of a system of waterworks at Guantanamo, and the building of a dock at Morro Castle. This has demanded much executive ability, untiring industry, and professional attainments of a high order, to the possession of which the quality and amount of work that Lieutenant Hamilton has accomplished bear ample testimony.
SANITATION OF TOWNS.
The sanitation of towns occupied by troops has been under military supervision and has been constantly improving. In Santiago, the chief city of the province, 864 miles of streets are swept daily, and during the year 25,000 cubic yards of street sweepings have been hauled out of the city. One hundred and eighteen thousand cubic yards of garbage have been removed, in the destruction of which 35,000 gallons of crude petroleum have been used. Four thousand gallons of carbolic acid have been used in the sanitation of Santiago and 11,000 pounds of chloride of lime.
CIVIL MATTERS. Control over civil matters, exercised through the several district commanders, has been an advisory supervision and the necessity for it is fast decreasing. The civil officials seem honestly to have endeavored to do their duty. They are proving equal to their responsibilities as fast as they are advanced. The relations between the civil and military have been uniformly harmonious. In my opinion, Cuban jurisprudence needs revision and reform. The American idea of the rights of the accused precludes a system that permits the taking of evidence against him in his absence and allows the introduction of hearsay evidence. Trials are not prompt, nor is there much to inspire confidence in the accuracy of judicial findings when action is finally had. The
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elections held on June 16 passed off quietly and the new officers have been installed without excitement.
The schools of the department are in an encouraging condition. They have been systematized during the year, salaries have been equalized for teachers, new schools have been established, and new furniture and books have been widely distributed. There are approximately 165,025 children of school age in the department. Of these there is an enrollment in school of 21,303 and an average attendance of 16,512. In my opinion, here lies the hope of the island.
I respectfully invite special attention to reports of the departmental 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 arduous 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, 1900. The ADJUTANT-GENERAL.
Sır: On the date of the last annual report of the commanding general the organizations serving in this department were the same as now, viz., the Fifth Cavalry; Eleventh Infantry; Fifth Artillery, 2 batteries; Signal Corps, 1 company; Hospital Corps, detachments; Porto Rico Volunteer Infantry, 4 companies.
The principal changes during the year resulted from the withdrawal 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:
Relieved from duty in the department and left for New York August 5 and 6, 1900, 29 officers and 726 enlisted men and 325 cavalry horses, leaving in the department at this date 119 officers and 2, 260 enlisted men.