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With Introduction arid Comments by 

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Naval War College 
Logistics Leadership Series 

Book One 

Cover photo: Impressively stacked stockpile of crated provisions 
supporting Allied forces during World War I (Rouen, France, January 

Photo used by permission of the Imperial War Museum, London, 

Cover design by Andrew Small, Graphic Arts Division, Naval War 

Research assistance provided by Marguerite Rauch, Reference Branch, 
Naval War College Library. 




A Naval War College Press Edition 

in the 

Logistics Leadership Series 




Vice Admiral William J. Hancock, U.S. Navy 

Deputy Chief of Naval Operations (Logistics) 




Captain John E. Jackson, SC, U.S. Navy 

Military Chair of Logistics 

U.S. Naval War College 

Naval War College Press 

Newport, Rhode Island 


Franklin Hudson Publishing Co., Kansas City, Mo. 
Published 1917 

National Defense University Press, Washington, D.C. 

First printing 1986. Second printing 1987. Third printing 1996. 

Naval War College Press, Newport, R.I. 
First printing 1997 

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data 

Thorpe, George C. (George Cyrus), 1875-1936. 
[Pure logistics] 

George C. Thorpe's pure logistics : the science of war preparation 
/ foreword by William J. Hancock ; introduction by John E. Jackson. 
— A Naval War College Press ed. in the logistics leadership series. 

p. cm. — (Logistics leadership series / Naval War College : 
bk. 1) 

Originally published: Pure logistics. Kansas City, Mo. : Franklin 
Hudson Pub. Co., 1917. 

Includes bibliographical references and index. 
1. Logistics. 2. Logistics, Naval. I. Tide. II. Series : 
Logistics leadership series ; bk. 1. 
U168.T5 1997 

355.4'H— dc21 97-37060 


Printed in the United States of America 



by William J. Hancock, Vice Admiral, U.S. Navy 


by John E.Jackson, Captain, SC, U.S. Navy 



I. Definition 9 

II. Russian Campaign 12 

III. Atlanta Campaign 21 

IV. German Army 27 

V. National Organization of Fighting Forces 38 

VI. Naval Organization 48 

VII. Army Organization 61 

VIII. The Fighting Machine 65 

IX. Peace-Time Logistics 68 

X. Factory Preparedness 71 

XL Logistical Problem 74 



INDEX 107 



Logistics, according to one definition, provides the physical 
means for organized forces to exercise power. As the distance 
from the provider to the customer (the so-called logistics pipeline) 
grows, so does the complexity of the task. In my position as the 
Navy's senior logistician, I see on a daily basis the tremendous 
size and the intricacy of the infrastructure necessary to logistically 
support Navy ships and personnel deployed to the furthest 
reaches of the globe. The other military services face similar 
demands. One measure of the size of the logistics challenge is 
reflected in the amount of resources committed to the problem. 
Within the Department of Defense, the logistics slice of the 
defense budget consumes over $43 billion per year, or about 17 
percent of the DOD top-line annually. Clearly, logistics is a subject 
worthy of careful study, which leads me to George C. Thorpe's 
remarkable little book, Pure Logistics. 

In just over 100 pages, Thorpe establishes abroad theory of 
what he calls the "science of war preparation"; provides historical 
examples of both logistics successes and failures; presents a 
theoretical plan for the National Organization of Fighting Forces; 
and even offers a classic exercise which seeks to establish the 
logistical requirements for an invasion force of over 250 coal- fired 
combatant and support ships! 

Admittedly, Pure Logistics is not a how-to book, and readers 
should not expect to walk away with a stack of specific 
"lessons-learned" ready to be applied to tomorrow's crisis. 
Instead, the book should be used as a foundation upon which 
additional study can be based. Just as we analyze Sun Tzu and 
Clausewitz to understand the art of war, so should we study 
Thorpe to understand his theory of logistics as a primer to more 
advanced research in this critical field. 

h I LA 

William J. Hancock 
Vice Admiral, U.S. Navy 
Deputy Chief of Naval 
Operations (Logistics) 


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The above quotation has been used countless times to open 
discussions on the subject of logistics. I hate it. To have a senior 
operational commander admit that he knows nothing about 
logistics is frightening, to say the least. You must wonder how his 
men would have reacted had he said, "I don't know anything 
about anti-submarine warfare . . . but I'm going to try some!" I 
suspect that King knew plenty about logistics, and the famous 
quotation is simply the product of a creative biographer. It 
bothers me, however, since it implies that logistics is an aspect of 
warfighting that is of minor importance to the commander and 
can somehow be "delivered" to him by a staff subordinate when 
it is needed. My contention is that logistical considerations have 
always played a major role in the success or failure of military 
campaigns, and that a thorough understanding of basic logistical 

Captain John E. Jackson, Supply Corps, United States Navy, has served 
in a series of logistics assignments both afloat and ashore over the past 26 years. 
A Distinguished Naval Graduate from the Naval Reserve Officer Training 
Corps at the University of New Mexico, he holds graduate degrees in education 
and in management and is currendy a doctoral candidate at Salve Regina 
University. He is also a graduate of the Management Development Program at 
Harvard University. In 1994 he was appointed by the Deputy Chief of Naval 
Operations (Logistics) to hold the Frederick J. Home Military Chair of 
Logistics at the U.S. Naval War College. A logistician, educator, and author, 
he is listed in Who's Who in America. 

tenets should be a mandatory part of the professional education 
of anyone who hopes to lead military forces into combat. 

I am certainly not the first logistician to think this way, and 
I will surely not be the last. But logistical education has been 
hampered over the years by many factors, including the absence 
of a body of theoretical literature. While strategy and tactics have 
been analyzed and studied for centuries, relatively few references 
can be found that attempt to study scientifically the concepts 
which are collectively called "logistics." 

In an effort to expand the existing foundation for such 
study, the Naval War College has undertaken to publish a series 
of books and monographs on logistics. The reprint of the classic 
work that follows is the first offering in the "Logistics Leadership 
Series." Originally published in 1917, Pure Logistics: The Science 
of War Preparation is a brief and concise primer in logistical 
concepts. Written by a Naval War College graduate and former 
staff member, it attempts to analyze logistics as a "pure science" 
as opposed to the usual methodology of looking at the issue as 
it is "applied" in actual practice. This "basic research" approach 
is one of the factors that makes the book relevant some eight 
decades after it was first published. While the times have 
changed and some of its examples are obviously dated, the 
fundamentals of Pure Logistics remain as true today as we 
approach the next century as they were at the turn of the last 
century when the book was conceived. 

About the Author 

George Cyrus Thorpe was born in Northfield, Minnesota, 
on 17 January 1875. He entered the United States Marine Corps 
as a temporary wartime second lieutenant in May 1898. During 
the twenty-five years that followed, he served in combat, in 
command of operational units, and in various academic pursuits. 
His keen insights into the importance of logistics were honed 
during a unique assignment that he completed in the early years 
of the 20th century. In November 1903, he was detached from 
duty aboard USS San Francisco and ordered to Djibouti, French 
Somaliland. There he assumed command of a contingent of 
eighteen Marines tasked with escorting the American Diplomatic 

Treaty Mission to the Court of Emperor Menelik of Abyssinia. 
A citation awarded after the mission stated: 

During its two months service in Abyssinia the command made 
more than 40 camps and hoisted the United States flag in as 
many places, the detachment traveling by camel and mule 
caravan for 650 miles and performing its service in a most 
satisfactory manner. 

He reported that "... in striking tents at all these camps and 
transporting our equipage by camel or mule caravan for 650 
miles we lost nothing but a few tent pegs." Thorpe had proven 
himself to be a superb steward of public property and an 
inventory manager of unusual skill and accuracy! 

His colorful report on the expedition highlighted many 
challenges, not the least of which were transportation issues 
relating to unruly camels, stubborn mules, and dilapidated 
railroads. Surprisingly, providing food to the party proved to be 
less of a problem than originally expected. In his official report 
to the Commandant of the Marine Corps (dated 30 January 1904) 
he states: 

I was the commissary officer for the expedition; furnished with an 
excellent ration from. USS MACHIAS and augmented with the 
results of our hunting, the men lived very well. The camp kitchen 
was, much of the time, supplied with antelope, guinea fowl, digdig, 
etc. As we neared Adis-Ababa, each camp was the scene of a long 
procession of natives filing into camp carrying on their heads 
baskets of food — presents by command of the Emperor. 

Once, when facing a particularly difficult stretch of terrain, 
he demonstrated his "diplomatic" skills as well. He wrote: 

All the camel leaders left their camels and came to the rear and 
announced that they were going to quit the caravan and go to their 
homes. I did not detain them, but bound their chief hand and foot; 
when the Dankali men saw him bound, they rushed toward us with 
their spears; the four Marines I had with me had dismounted and 
I ordered them to load and aim over their saddles. Looking into 
the muzzles of our rifles and revolvers the spearmen halted. In this 
situation the chief was told that he could go our way voluntarily or 
be dragged. He finally consented to our demands and from this 
time on we had litde difficulty with the Dankali men. 


For his services in this expedition, Thorpe earned the Menelik 
Medal from the Emperor of Abyssinia as well as a healthy respect 
for the challenges of logistically supporting a force far from its 
home base. 

After his "African adventure," Thorpe completed several 
assignments aboard various ships of the fleet as well as shore 
tours in recruiting and other duties. From 1911 to 1914 he 
commanded the Naval Prison at Portsmouth, New Hampshire, 
which no doubt gave him ample opportunity to exercise the same 
management style he had used on the rebellious Dankali men of 

Thorpe is remembered as a Marine with many talents, 
including the ability to share his ideas through the publication of 
articles and books. During a tour on the staff of the Naval War 
College in Newport, Rhode Island, from 1914 to 1916, he wrote 
his first major work, Pure Logistics: The Science of War Preparation. 
He later published books on subjects ranging from international 
law to prohibition, and he was a frequent contributor to the 
Marine Corps Gazette and other periodicals. Highly educated, he 
earned a law degree from New York University and a master of 
arts degree from Brown University. 

Colonel Thorpe retired from the Marine Corps in 1923 as 
the result of a service-connected disability. After retirement, he 
practiced law in Washington, D .C . , where he died on 23 J uly 1 93 6 
at the age of 6 1 . 

One final historical footnote of interest relates to Thorpe's 
eldest daughter, Amy Elizabeth (Mrs. Arthur J. Pack). During 
World War II, Amy was recruited by Sir William Samuel 
Stephenson (code-name "Intrepid") of British intelligence to 
serve as an operative within the United States and in Europe. 
While living in Warsaw with her British Foreign Service husband, 
she was instrumental in obtaining drawings, documents, and 
other material which enabled the British intelligence service to 
decipher German military codes in a project named ULTRA. 
Considered one of the greatest intelligence accomplishments of 
World War II, ULTRA enabled the Allies to read Hitler's orders 
to his generals, frequently before the generals themselves! Her 
career in espionage has been described as one of the mostbrilliant 
of the war. At one point in Pure Logistics, Thorpe argues that 


intelligence gathering and dissemination "should be included 
under the logistical function." I doubt that he ever imagined that 
his daughter would become involved in intelligence gathering of 
such stunning proportions. 

The Essence of Thorpe 

Pure Logistics was originally published by the Franklin 
Hudson Publishing Company of Kansas City in 1917 in a tiny 
five-by-six-inch paperback format. Too small for most library 
shelves, and easily mistaken for a children's book, it received little 
attention when first published and literally "fell- through- the- 
cracks" on many bookshelves. While the presentation of the 
material can be faulted (it would be considered a packaging and 
marketing failure in today's world), the basic content was so 
valuable that it survived eight tumultuous decades during which 
its lessons were relearned through bloodshed and misadventure. 
Noted logistician Rear Admiral Henry E. Eccles, U.S. Navy (Ret.) 

In 1917, LTCOL Cyrus Thorpe, USMC, published an excellent 
little book, Pure Logistics: The Science of War Preparation. This initial 
attempt to develop theory and principle apparently attracted little 
or no attention until five copies were found in the Naval War 
College library in 1945. Some students of war have wondered how 
many billions could have been saved had the significance of 
Colonel's Thorpe's ideas been fully appreciated before 1941. 

In Pure Logistics, Thorpe notes that soldiers, scholars, and 
historians have long labored to develop a Science of War, and 
through this process they have rather exhaustively defined the 
roles of strategy and tactics. But, he argues, the role and 
importance of logistics have been largely overlooked. He 
cleverly equates war with theater when he asserts that strategy is 
akin to the plot of a play, with tactics serving as the role of the 
actors. He extends the analogy in saying that logistics should be 
likened to the stage management that enables the play to be 
presented. He goes on to posit that stage management is at least 
as important to the successful presentation of the play as either 
of the other two dramatic ingredients. 


He states early on that "Pure logistics is merely a scientific 
inquiry into the theory of logistics — its scope and function in the 
Science of War, with a broad outline of its organization." For this 
reason, the book is not simply a guideline or check-off sheet 
applicable to modern military operations. Instead, readers 
should seek fundamental truths about the challenges of logistics 
and use this work to establish a firm foundation for future 
inquires and reflection. 

In his effort to describe the theory of logistics, he refers to 
several case studies to demonstrate his key principles. As such, he 
uses "applied logistics" examples to illustrate "basic logistics" 
principles. His historical examples cover Napoleon's Russian 
campaign, General Sherman's Atlanta campaign, and Prussia's 
1870 war with France. Each example serves to highlight a 
different aspect of his theory of logistics. The modern reader can 
surely identify additional examples from the 20th century that 
could tell the same tale. The massive (and successful) logistics tail 
which crossed the English Channel after D-Day serves as a 
demonstrative counterpoint to the logistics failure which brought 
Nazi tanks to a halt during the Battle of the Bulge. 

About mid-way through his book, Thorpe switches his focus 
from a historical look at the past and lays out a prescription 
for how things might be done in the future. Many of his points 
ring true today. He advocates centralization in control and 
decentralization in execution. Eight decades later, we see 
evidence of a similar approach within the Department of 
Defense. Increasingly centralized decision-making authority has 
been vested in organizations such as the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who 
utilize decision-making bodies such as the Joint Requirements 
Oversight Council (J ROC) to arrive at recommendations that 
cross traditional service and organizational lines. The trend 
toward decentralized execution is apparent in the growing 
independence and autonomy of the warfighting Commanders- 
in-Chief (CINCs). Thorpe advocated a high-level national Board 
of Strategy tasked with developing top-down guidance on the 
nation's defense and national security strategy. This task is 
accomplished today not by a single board but in a series of 
documents that include: the National Security Strategy (NSS), 
which elucidates the President's vision; the National Military 


Strategy (NMS), in which the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff 
details how the NSS will be executed; and the Defense Planning 
Guidance (DPG), in which the Secretary of Defense directs 
specific programmatic actions to be taken to enable the military 
departments to carry out the national strategy. While the process 
differs from that advocated by Thorpe, the result is the same: the 
development and promulgation of "top-down" guidance to 
defense planners and military leaders tasked with carrying out 
the policies. 

Thorpe details the broad outlines of both Navy and Army 
staffs, noting the desired mix of operational commanders and 
staff support officers. His proposed Navy department organization 
consists of two major divisions: a General Staff representing the 
tactical functions, and a Logistical Staff representing the logistical 
functions. His analysis of the advantages and disadvantages of 
such an organization provide interesting food for thought, 
particularly in light of the many organizational changes which 
are considered from year to year. 

Also worthy of careful study are Thorpe's ideas about 
peacetime logistics and factory preparedness (what we would now 
call maintenance of the defense industrial base). He specifically 
addresses this issue when he states: 

Arrangements should be made with private factories that will be 
expected to manufacture munitions, in wartime, whereby such 
factories will anticipate requirements by having on hand all 
necessary machinery, or the specifications and means for quickly 
providing it, for the special and additional manufacturing. 

The ability of a nation to move quickly from peacetime 
operations to wartime support is now more critical than ever. The 
relatively slow pace of the logistical buildup of World Wars I and 
II (and to a degree, Desert Storm) enabled a gradual changeover 
from producing consumer goods to cranking out the sinews of 
war. It is unlikely that war in the next century will be so 
accommodating. The decreasing number of manufacturers of 
defense-relevant goods means that efforts must be made to 
ensure somehow that the necessary surge capacity exists to 
"spool-up" the production of the necessary materials and 
equipment. As one way to address this problem, contractual 


agreements have recently been put into place with many 
manufacturers to maintain a dual-use capacity (to, for instance, 
produce fast-food restaurant uniforms one day, then switch to 
combat uniform production the next). 

While Thorpe tries to stay theoretical and discuss "pure" 
versus "applied" logistics, he offers a very concrete example of 
applied logistics in an interesting logistics problem. The reader 
can learn a lot from a simple review of the problem situation and 
the factors that must be taken into consideration. Granted, he 
seems less relevant when he speaks of the amount of coal needed 
per day and the number of pounds of fresh mutton and tinned 
prunes per day, but the exercise is fun to contemplate, and, as 
Thorpe says at the end of the problem, ". . . it suggests the 
enormous proportions of the logistical task for a more serious 

Thoughts on Education 

One benefit of writing a theoretical work is that limits of 
practicality need not apply. This becomes evident when Thorpe 
turns to the concept of education and establishes his theory 
of how both the general population and those in the military 
services should be educated. He justifies this "tangent" by 
arguing, "A consideration of pure logistics can not be complete, 
then, without some reference to a theory of preparing the parts 
of the organization for efficient operation." He advocates 
"... rearranging the course of common school education so that 
it will follow a natural order and deliver to the army and navy 
men properly qualified to begin technical training." He 
recognizes that this is a tall order, and goes on to acknowledge, 
"Such achievement in national efficiency may not be realized 
for a long time, and, until then, the military must prepare its 
own personnel, supplying everything that the public schools have 
omitted and that is essential." 

His specific details as to the subjects that should constitute 
this "technical education" are interesting, reflecting the essence 
of the times as the 20th century was beginning. Technology was 
beginning to make its presence known, and thus he cites the need 
for study in such fields as photography, mechanical drawing, and 


electricity for military use. He also recommends more traditional 
studies in areas such as international law, military history, and 
policy and administration. 

A strong advocate of attendance at the service staff colleges, 
Thorpe stated that "vacancies on the general staff corps should 
be filled entirely by graduates of their respective staff colleges, 
the detail carrying with it a certain amount of additional 
promotion." He goes on to predict that "the fact that a staff detail 
promised extra promotion would be an incentive to officers to 
try for the staff college, and would spur them to their best 
efforts from the moment they decided upon a military or naval 
career." While no "general staff corps" exists in the modern 
American military, recent legislation (including the wide-ranging 
Goldwater-Nichols DOD Reorganization Act of 1986) has 
formalized the need for professional military education for all 
military officers and has elevated the status of the staff colleges to 
levels previously unknown. 

A Classic Resurrected 

I first discovered an original copy of Pure Logistics while 
investigating the remnants of the twenty-thousand-volume 
logistics library established in 1944 at the Advanced Supply 
Base Training Center, Williamsburg, Virginia. About three 
thousand items from the library were transferred to Newport in 
1947, when the logistics course was established at the Naval War 
College. This specialized library was eventually disestablished, 
with portions of it incorporated into the College's general 
collection. Many items, unfortunately, were discarded. 
Republishing the book was considered at various times, but 
higher priority projects intervened. In the mid-1980s, Pure 
Logistics was resurrected by members of the faculty of the 
Industrial College of the Armed Forces. The subsequent 
publication by the National Defense University Press in 1986 
marked the first time this work became widely available to 
modern planners and scholars 

In March 1997, the Naval War College hosted a symposium 
entitled "Joint Logistics for the 2 1 st Century," which represented 
the first major logistics conference held in Newport in decades. 


Over 750 students, senior officers, and Department of Defense 
civilians participated in this watershed event. As an outgrowth of 
this symposium, the need for additional research and study on 
logistics was clearly identified. Republication of Pure Logistics 
represents the first step in this process. We are indebted to the 
NDU Press for their assistance in producing this version of 
Thorpe's seminal work. It will serve as the first in a series of books 
on the subject. A reprint of Rear Admiral Henry E. Eccles' classic, 
Logistics in the National Defense, is scheduled as the second volume 
in the Logistics Leadership Series. 

In closing, we would like to note that the true purpose of 
this introduction is simply to encourage defense professionals to 
read the book! We have neither attempted to point out all 
relevant areas nor to identify every irrelevant one. We merely 
want to open the door to consideration of the importance of 
logistics in the success of any military undertaking. If this edition 
oiPure Logistics whets your appetite for further study, it has more 
than fulfilled its purpose. 

C. A cod^ — ■ 

Jonn E. Jackson U. S. Naval War College 

Captain, Supply Corps Newport, Rhode Island 

U.S. Navy Fall 1997 


The pages that follow represent a total reprint of 
the original 1917 edition. This printing follows 
the original edition, retaining the style of the 
author. The only changes made are corrections of 
typographical errors and minor modifications of 


Napoleon never used the word logistics. Of course he em- 
ployed all the elements of Logistics necessary to war in 
his day, as he did the elements of Strategy and Tactics. But 
while he conceived of the two last-named functions as distinct 
divisions of labor, he did not realize (except, perhaps, when it 
was too late) that logistical functions comprised a third entitv 
in war functions. 

It is curious, then, that the only classical literature now to 
be found in libraries on Logistics, eo nomine, was contributed 
by a prominent officer of Napoleon's Staff. To this subject 
Baron de Jomini devotes a part of one chapter in his "Precis 
de l'Art de la Guerre." 

Nearly every civilian is familiar with the terms strategy and 
tactics, and nearly all intelligent patriots know that the former 
has reference to the general plan for the employment of the 
nation's fighting forces and the latter to the manner of fight- 
ing. But, if we may judge of the matter from the silence of 
books on the Science and Art of War, the conclusion is irresist- 
ible that the military themselves know next to nothing about 
Logistics. Some authors have mentioned Logistics as one of 
the three great divisions of war work, but then say no more 
about it — except, possibly, that it relates to transportation and 

jomini goes to the other extreme, for, after reading over 
the list of activities that he assigns to Logistics, one wonders 
what can be left to Strategy and Tactics — very little indeed. 
But the Baron's exposition is worthy of serious consideration, 
for, it will be remembered, he served as historiographer for 
Napoleon during the Russian campaign, and thus was in a po- 
sition to know all the facts of the most conspicuous logistical 
failure in the history of warfare. 

George C. Thorpe 

That Logistics has received so little academic attention 
and is so little mentioned in the literature of war is readily 

Strategy is to war what the plot is to the play; Tactics is 
represented by the role of the players; Logistics furnishes the 
stage management, accessories, and maintenance. The audi- 
ence, thrilled by the action of the play and the art of the per- 
formers, overlooks all of the cleverly hidden details of stage 
management. In the conditions now 7 adhering to the drama it 
would hardly be incorrect to assert that the part played by the 
stage director, the scene-shifter, the property-man, and the 
lighting expert equals, if it does not exceed in importance, the 
art of the actor. This, of course, has been a relatively recent 
development, for during the earlier periods of the drama the 
actors were forced to rely almost entirely upon their interpre- 
tative skill in creating the illusion of place and time. Stage- 
craft, with its elaborate settings, its mechanical accessories, and 
its complete efficiency, is a comparatively recent addition to 
dramatic art. 

Logistics is the same degree of parvenu in the science of 
war that stage management is in the theater. Battles between 
the earliest tribes probably were fought on the spur of the mo- 
ment of provocation, without predetermined plan and with- 
out providing special means of fighting; that is to say, Tactics 
only was involved. After experience in battle, some intelligent 
warrior suggested to his fellows that they might secure advan- 
tages over their adversaries by planning the affair in advance; 
the plan naturally suggested the stratagem. Stratagems were 
multipled and elaborated until the contest became something 
more than a single battle fought out in one day, the final deci- 
sion, indeed, only being expected from a combination of bat- 
tles. Hence in the earliest and simplest combinations of this 
sort we find the budding science of Strategy revealed. As soon 
as the battle became something more than the sudden fight of 
short duration, more or less of organization and preparation 
of means of fighting, or of executing stratagems, were called 
for: it was necessary to prepare hiding-places, traps, means of 
communication, and to provide food for warriors who would 
be prevented from hunting, by reason of military employ- 


ments, for a longer period than usual. This stage in the devel- 
opment of warfare marks the beginning of Logistics. 

It is easy to imagine that these early warriors regarded 
such logistical functions as of somewhat less importance than 
their strategy, or plan, and the plan as of less importance than 
the actual fighting, since the contact was the most obvious con- 
tribution to the result. This relative order of the three roles is 
still recognized, but it is quite certain, that down through the 
stages of history Strategy has robbed Tactics of ever more and 
more of its glory, and that Logistics has been crowding both. 
As, mothered by Invention, improvements in the means of 
fighting one by one have come into use, the items of Logistics 
have accumulated. At the same time, while Strategy and Tac- 
tics are much talked of under the topic of Science of War, 
there has not yet been recognized a science of Logistics. 

The campaign records of all modern wars cry out this 
lache; history repeats itself, war after war, giving the world 
story after story of muddled preparation of the means of 
fighting. War has become a business; therefore training and 
preparation for war is a business — vast and comprehending 
many departments. Like commercial activities, it is susceptible 
of analysis in order to determine upon proper division of la- 
bor, to estimate necessities required to meet the situation, and 
to avoid duplication and waste. 

The obscurity of Logistics may be explained, again, by the 
fact that warfare itself is in a primitive stage of development. 
Despite the 3,165 years of fighting during the past thirty-four 
centuries,* represented by some 8,000 recorded wars, T it must 
be admitted that progress in war has been slow. We now know 
that there are five distinct elements to be considered as medi- 
ums of fighting: the land surface, the water surface, the air, 
the subterranean, and the submarine. Fighting on the first 
and second of these elements, only, has been fairly developed; 
the others are in the experimental stage; air fighting is not yet 
reliable, hence is only auxiliary; the same may be said of the 
submarine; and subterranean fighting is but slightly devel- 
oped by means of trenches and sapping. The cycle of evolu- 

I. S. Block, Modern Weapons and Modern War, Preface, p. xcvii. 
f J. Novicow, War and Its Alleged Benefits, New York, 1911, p. 14. 

George C. Thorpe 

tion can not be satisfied until super-surface and sub-surface 

elements have been fully exploited. The quick emprise of the 
present century has induced lively consideration of these new 
theaters of war. with the result that the super-surface has 
yielded the best results — has contributed most to the ultimate 
object of war — as might have been expected, since the resist- 
ance encountered is less in the super-surface than in the sub- 
surface. When means and methods of fighting in the air have 
been intensively developed, greater attention will be given to 
the sub-surface. When all possibilities there have been ex- 
hausted, warfare will then be a finished art. 

In more ways than one it is revealed to us that the way to 
universal peace lies in the direction of perfection of war 
means. Peace can come only through discouraging peoples 
from fighting; discouragement will follow close upon the heels 
of such excellent preparedness as will place belligerents 
against each other with no chance of launching an offensive 
that can not be met successfully. When nations so prepare for 
war that the offensive can not overcome the defensive, the 
eternal energies of man will find exercise in other pleasures 
than preying upon his fellows in industry and war. The cri- 
terion of wordlv achievement will then shift from acquisitive- 
ness to fellow service. 

At the same rate in which we find modern war losing its 
mystery and chivalrv. we find it ranging itself in close alliance 
with industry of the commercial kind, from which war is 
acquiring "business methods." The lessons of every war of the 
past hundred years have emphasized the importance of the 
business factor. As the nation at peace is a hive of industry, so 
the state at war is a nation in arms — every individual with a 
part to perform either in the actual fighting or in providing 
means for fighting. To be efficient, in this great task, there 
must be "team-work." The tasks to be performed must be clas- 
sified and the performers distributed to the various classes of 
work in such manner as to eliminate duplication and waste. 
This is almost exclusively the province of Logistics. 

If country X is preparing for war, she can not possibly 
conceal any considerable part of her preparatory activities; a 
large portion of her expenditures for armament must be 
made public; large armies can not be trained even in a year, or 


two years, and their existence can not be kept a secret; the 
smallest warships take many months in the building-docks and 
capital ships are under construction for years; not even defen- 
sive war can be successful without advanced bases, sheltered in 
islands in distant seas. These must be acquired and fortified in 
advance. In addition, alliances and ententes are usually 
arranged; an educational campaign is instituted; statesmen 
and educators talk to the people to arouse popular sentiment 
to an appreciation of the nation's peril or the nation's "des- 
tiny." Activities in preparation for war announce their own 
purpose as clearly as an actual declaration. Country Y, if it has 
modern machinery in the shape of a general staff, can keep 
posted as to X's activities and, by comparing them with that 
country's peace activities as well as occurrences that preceded 
X's last previous war, can arrive at a reliable estimate of X's 
probable intentions. Y's general staff can also secure and clas- 
sify data as to X's resources convertible into fighting means at 
the outbreak of war and at successive later periods of its prog- 
ress. With these data, Y's problem is to estimate the extent to 
which she herself must convert resources into means as an an- 
swer to X's preparations. Here we have a task that is divided 
between Strategy and Logistics: Strategy provides the scheme 
of utilizing our forces, and Logistics provides the means 

The terms "pure" and "applied" may be used with the same 
meaning as to Logistics as to other sciences. Pure logistics 
is merely a scientific inquiry into the theory of Logistics — its 
scope and function in the Science of War, with a broad outline 
of its organization. Applied Logistics rests upon the pure, and 
concerns itself, in accordance with general principles, with the 
detailed manner of dividing labor in the logistical field in the 
preparation for war and in maintaining war during its dura- 
tion. Pure Logistics thus can be presented in a few pages, 
while applied Logistics embraces a large number of subjects, 
such as the logistics of subsistence and other supplies, logistics 
of transportation, logistics of war finance, logistics of ship con- 
struction, logistics of munition manufacture, etc. 

Pure Logistics only will be considered in the following 



I. Definition 

Assuming that Logistics is a branch of warfare, we are first 
interested to ascertain its nature and to present a defini- 
tion or concept. For this purpose we may accept an authorita- 
tive analysis of war. Von Clausewitz says: 

The Art of War is therefore, in its proper sense, the 
art of making use of the given means in fighting, and we 
can not give it a better name than the "Conduct of War." 
On the other hand, in a wider sense, all activities which 
have their existence on account of war (therefore the 
whole creation of troops — that is, levying them, arming, 
equipping, and exercising them) belong to the Art of 

To make a sound theory it is most essential to sepa- 
rate these two activities. 

The Conduct of War is, therefore, the formation and 
conduct of the fighting. 1 

This he divides thus: 

Tactics is the theory of the use of military forces in 

Strategy is the theory of the use of combats for the 
object of the war. 

Then he goes on to say: 

Our classification reaches and covers only the use of 
the military force. But now there are in War a number of 
activities which are subservient to it, and still are quite dif- 
ferent from it; sometimes closely allied, sometimes less 
near in their affinity. All these activities relate to the 
maintenance of the military force. In the same way as its 
creation and training precede its use, so its maintenance is 

George C. Thorpe 

always a necessary condition. But, strictly viewed, all activ- 
ities thus connected with it are always to be regarded only 
as preparations for fighting; they are certainly nothing 
more than activities which are very close to the action, so 
that they run through the hostile act alternate in impor- 
tance with the use of the forces. We have, therefore, a 
right to exclude them as well as the other preparatory ac- 
tivities from the Art of War, in its restricted sense, from 
the Conduct of War so called; and we are obliged to do so 
if we would comply with the first principles of all theory, 
the elimination of all heterogeneous elements. Who 
would admit in the real "Conduct of War" the whole lit- 
any of subsistence and administration, because it is admit- 
ted to stand in the constant reciprocal action with the use 
of the troops, but something essentially different from 

Among these different and subservient "activities," von 
Clausewitz mentions: subsistence, administration, care of the 
sick, supply and repair of arms and equipment, and the exe- 
cution of the construction of entrenchments. These items have 
been augmented considerably during the century of progress 
since von Clausewitz wrote; modern inventions, enlargement 
of armies, and expansion of operations have greatly compli- 
cated the machinery of administration and the elaboration of 
details. Tactics still remains, however, "the theory of the use of 
forces in combat," and Strategy "the theory of the use of com- 
bats for the object of the war." The third branch of warfare, 
then, has increased its province, pari passu, with the accumula- 
tion and perfection of means of combat and the development 
of resources convertible to war service. 

Some students of war speak of Logistics as having refer- 
ence only to the transportation and supply of land and naval 
forces. For example, in academic solutions of problems, logis- 
tical requirements of an expedition are stated in terms of fuel, 
oil, rations, other supplies, and transportation thereof, for a 
fleet, and of supplies and transportation of supplies, for an 
army. At the same time these students speak of Strategy, Tac- 
tics, and Logistics as comprising the sum of the functional di- 
visions of war. Since they do not quarrel with Von Clausewitz's 
definitions of Strategy and Tactics, it follows that their con- 



ception of Logistics is much too narrow. 

There is something more than academic interest in cor- 
rectly defining Logistics, for the purpose of the definition is to 
establish a division of labor, and if two divisions are properly 
drawn while the third is not, there will be either duplication of 
effort or some functions will be overlooked entirely, with the 
result that certain preparations for war will not be made. Let 
us say, for instance, that the care of wounded is not provided 
for under any one of the three cardinal functions of war: 
Strategy and Tactics will indicate the extent of operations that 
are proposed, and Logistics will provide means therefor with- 
out making arrangements for the wounded; assuming that 
there are in the military organization doctors and hospital at- 
tendants, yet their numbers will not be based upon the re- 
quirements of the proposed campaign, nor the amount of 
their equipment and the manner of its employment. On the 
other hand, if care of the wounded had been placed under 
Logistics, all the requirements for attending the wounded 
would be a part of the logistical estimates. 

"But," he says who narrowly defines Logistics, "why assign 
all these details to Logistics? What difference does it make if, 
say, of ten different principal activities, we give two to Logis- 
tics and distribute the other eight among several other classifi- 
cations, or include them all under one head? Is not it merely a 
matter of terminology?" 

The answer to this objection is the "estimate of the situa- 
tion." As von Clausewitz has shown, in the abstract, the 
functions of war naturally fall into three classes, essentially dif- 
ferent; so it is easy to see, in the estimate of any military or na- 
val problem, there are three great divisions of work, or tasks, 
to be performed. The same is again found in the concrete in 
an analysis of any important campaign given us by history. 
Wherever we are given the detailed incidents of a campaign, it 
is quite clear that the belligerent enjoys the advantage in pro- 
portion as he truly defines the tasks and organizes 

That this conclusion may be an independent matter with 
the reader, based on facts, we may examine in detail a great 
campaign that failed because the elements of Logistics were 
not conceived as an entity and organized for cooperation. 


II. Russian Campaign 

Napoleon's campaign into Russia, 1811 — 12, is often care- 
lessly spoken of as "a logistical failure because of the lack 
of food and transportation." What is the evidence? 
Dodge says, in his Great Captains:* 

Victual was in plenty, for Russia and Poland had for 
years not marketed their surplus grain, and Prussia could 
pay her indemnities in breadstuff; beeves roamed in 
droves in Galicia; and a well-operated supply train, orga- 
nized in battalions, had already been created. 

More was trodden under foot than eaten. 1 

In the middle of the summer of 1812, when the subsist- 
ence question was pressing hard, the Crown Prince of Bavaria 
wrote home: 

If Ney demanded from the French divisions which 
precede us, even after a fashion, a little order, all the 
troops could be well nourished; but all these who go be- 
fore us can, without being prevented, pillage and burn 

It was not a question of there not being sufficient food 
available; the failure lay in the absence of cooperation be- 
tween, at least, commissary, transportation, and military 

Sufficient victual was got together, but the difficulties 
of distribution were not overcome/' 

The main part of the victual, following the army in 
endless trains, could not be got along fast enough, proved 
to be of no avail, and mostly fell a prey to train-men. 7 



This delay of transport may have been due to delin- 
quency of the train-men, to failure of engineers to meet re- 
quirements in road-making, or, possibly, tactical dispositions 
made too great demands. In any case it was a failure of coop- 
eration. If the commissary, engineers, and transport had been 
coordinated under one logistical head, the different function- 
aries thereof would have been made to serve each other to 
meet the tactical requirement; or, if it became apparent to 
such logistical head that the tactical requirement could not be 
met, he, familiar with the coordinated effort, could more 
readily make the proper representations to the commander, 
so that the requirement could be modified, than could the sev- 
eral separated heads, who would not be able to say that the 
united efforts of commissary, engineer, and transport could 
not meet the requirement. Furthermore, if all these subservi- 
ent functions are organized as a logistical unity, they work in 
cooperation in preparing the way for Tactics in response to 
the requirements of Strategy. So in this case of the failure of 
the victual trains to get up, there was not harmonious 

Here is another of the numerous items of this history 
showing the same thing: 

July had been rainy; scant or bad food had 
multiplied sickness; the usual rations were still in the rear, 
transporting from Konigsberg to Kovno, under control of 
Admiral Basta. . . . The foragers generally brought in rye; 
the men had no mills to grind it, but dried as coffee 
would be, in any kind of utensil, being stirred all the time, 
it could be used like rice and cooked with meat or other 
things. About a pound a day per man was considered suf- 
ficient. The beeves driven along for meat were often unfit 
to eat. The water was mostly from swamps, or much 
muddied by constant use, and brandy to cut the water 
was absent. 8 

Better prearrangements about the river transport would 
have spared the necessity of using the rye, or a proper esti- 
mate would have shown the probability of requiring that grain 
and would have provided hand-mills, so that breadstuffs 


George C. Thorpe 

could have been made of the rye. There was immense wastage 
of the beeves in the bad management of the drovers. 

This historian recognizes the bad logistics in this signifi- 
cant sentence: 

At the opening of the campaign he [Napoleon] had 
had his choice of a slower and more methodical advance 
into Russia, by keeping the troops back until his means of 
victualing them could be perfected. 9 

Now let us hear the evidence as to the allegation that the 
campaign failed for lack of transportation. The same author 

Transportation was organized on the largest scale. 

With the marching columns were later too many wag- 
ons, and far too many servants. 

Officers were allowed a carriage apiece to carry 
rations. 10 

The officers had pack-horses and carriages far beyond 
regulation allowances; "for every three men in the Grand 
Army there was, including the artillery and ammunition train, 
at least one animal." 11 

There was such an abundance of transportation that the 
army carried many women. 12 

The question of victual had already become difficult; 
large supplies were coming to Konigsberg, whence they 
were to be wagoned forward to the marching armies; the 
shipping up the Niemen and Vilia was not yet organized; 
but he was unaccustomed to wait. 13 

This again shows the effect of not giving Logistics its 
proper place in the triad. The excess of centralization, in the 
French Army, resulted in deficiency in initiative in the sub- 
servient branches. Although Napoleon had an enormous 
Staff, there was not that decentralization of authority that is 
necessary to obtain large production of results in the several 
departments. There was a machine, the operator was strong, 



but the parts of the machine did not have the strength requi- 
site to meet the heavy burden imposed. 

It should be remembered that Napoleon was not only 
commander of an army of over half a million men, but that he 
was charged with worries of the political situation of a great 
empire; strategical and political functions would seem to make 
a sufficient load for one man, but we find Napoleon giving at- 
tention to the smallest details. He was writing letters about 
badly made saddles for the army; 14 about samples and prices 
of shirts; about the quality of cloths used in uniforms and 
their manufacture; about the knapsack; 1;> about the details of 
military diaries and bulletins; about the quality of the bread; lb 
about employing sailors as servants; about "a navy paymaster 
occupying Marshal Soult's house in Utrecht while Ney was 
lodged in a citadel like a captain"; about the details of fire drill 
and target practice; about expediting the trials of certain sol- 
diers; about the purchase of horses; 17 and so about innumera- 
ble details that should have been entirely and efficiently dealt 
with by staff officers, "the master's eye was on everything," 
with "diligence and care of detail." 18 

The history of the preparations for the Russian campaign 
reveals that the Russian Government had recently completed a 
map of the empire on a scale of 8 miles to the inch, and that 
although Napoleon had obtained a copy, no attention was 
given to providing the army with maps. As late as the middle 
of 1812 Davout complained that he had only seven maps in 
his whole corps. Instead of preparing maps in Paris before the 
start, hastily and improperly made sketches were made under 
the stress of the hard conditions prevailing at the front. Even 
the map that Napoleon had was devoid of such details as 
cross-roads, villages, forest, etc. 19 This could not have hap- 
pened if a Logistical Board had been analyzing all the require- 
ments of the advance. 

One of the most fatal defects in the organization was 
oversight of the police question. The results of disorder 
growing out of lack of police can scarely be estimated. By fail- 
ure to preserve order in Lithuania the people turned against 
the French and increased the difficulty of victualing. 20 Napo- 
leon wrote, "Terror and desolation are in Poland from the 
conduct of the Wurtembergers." 


George C. Thorpe 

Straggling depleted the ranks; from Niemen to the 
Dvina, St. Cyr daily lost the equivalent of a battalion. 
Orders against plunder arrested no man. 
Non-combatants were a host. 21 

In June, 1812, instructions were issued "to prevent the 
disorders that begin to desolate the country. 22 

The fact that Napoleon's army organization was a ma- 
chine that would not work, on account of lack of responsive- 
ness of parts, can be illustrated by no more striking incident 
than the occurrence of July 26th, when he had a force of 
120, 000 in the presence of the Russian commander's 80,000 
and the long-sought battle with the ever-retreating Russians 
was seemingly at hand; French cooperation was so sluggish 
that the tactical dispositions could not be made in time to 
profit by the opportunity. Here we have an example of the 
close interrelations between Tactics and Logistics; Logistics, 
furnishing the service of information and discharging the du- 
ties of communications, enables the tactical formations to be 
made promptly. 

Without logistical coordination, the system of communica- 
tion had so far lagged behind in meeting the requirements of 
the tactical dispositions that by June, 1812, the Emperor's or- 
ders, issued on the basis of belated information, were becom- 
ing impracticable of execution. 23 

The hospital service shared the same fate of failure to 
meet the situation. After the battle of Lubino, Napoleon or- 
dered the Chief of Staff to — 

Write to the Intendant-General that the service of the 
ambulance is badly done; that it is astonishing that since 
yesterday, when there were engagements of the vanguard 
[really the battle of Lubino], the surgeons of headquar- 
ters, some ambulances and empty wagons . . . should not 
have been sent to the vanguard to pick up the wounded; 
and that the administration has no head. 24 

As the service of information is so important an element 
in warfare, let us see to what extent it was attended to in the 
Russian campaign: 



The information Napoleon secured about the Rus- 
sian armies was necessarily limited more than that of the 
Russians about him. 

Although Napoleon was anxious to capture Vilna, for 
navigation extended up so far, and it was a good point to 
create a big depot, he was anxious to trace the Russian 
whereabouts before advancing too fast. 

Napoleon was well known to have no compunctions about 
the use of spies. Had he taken the pains to employ them here, 
in good organization, his information about the Russians 
would not have been so meager and he would have been 
spared many costly delays incident to reconnaissance under 
difficult conditions. 

The evidence is that the French intelligence service was 
not organized along the lines of unity for rapid collection, 
classification, verification, and distribution. Information is of 
no value unless it is quickly available for use. Where this func- 
tion is located in a single bureau, reports can be compared to 
the end that conflicting reports will reveal errors and falsity, 
and the truth being thus sifted out can be sent to the com- 
mander to whose plans the information is material. That Na- 
poleon had no such bureau in the field is evidenced by an 
order to the inefficient Jerome: 

You should receive reports from your generals and 
of your vanguard colonels, and after reading them, you 
should send the originals to the Emperor. (He) reads 
these volumes of reports; and it is there he gets informa- 
tion according to which he directs his troops. 2 ' 

Is it not little short of marvelous that a commander, 
charged with so great responsibilities as was Napoleon at this 
time, could find the time to wade through the heterogeneous 
mass of original reports? It is not reasonable to suppose that 
the result must have been a neglect of more legitimate 

All through the account of these Russian days one meets 
the note that the commander was "puzzled by the lack of in- 
formation." They were "directing affairs by couriers, upon in- 
formation both late and partial." 28 


George C. Thorpe 

Attention to details, instead of exclusive attention to the 
large questions of a commander, was the direct cause of fail- 
ure. For example, on one occasion, Napoleon delayed seven- 
teen days at Vilna. 

Much of the Vilna work could have been left to 
others; the strategic situation could not. Had Napoleon 
accompanied Davout and the Guard from Vilna to Minsk, 
he would surely have headed off Bagration, and with 
Jerome's assistance — or with that of a better leader — have 
beaten him. Or had he personally advanced on Barclay, 
with the Guard, Eugene and Davout, he could have 
reached Polotsk on the 12th and have thrown Barclay 
back on Riga, and this would have ended the campaign. 
The loss of seventeen days at Vilna was the error of Na- 
poleon's military career most fraught with ill results. 29 

By July, 1812, Napoleon was realizing the necessity of 
granting out authority as to details. Inasmuch as he had not 
organized logistics before the campaign, he had finally to 
make an organization, in the field, that would meet require- 
ments. He instructed his Chief of Staff to — 

Charge a general officer of your staff to occupy him- 
self solely with the organization of the routes of commu- 
nication from Vilkoviski to Kovno and from Kovno to 

The commander-in-chief became swamped under the de- 
tails of Strategy, Tactics, and Logistics, and, when it was too 
late to repair the damage, began to leave the initiative to 
others. He told Berthier to write Reynier: 

I do not prescribe anything to him; . . . that all that is 
left to his prudence." 

Oudinot was also informed that — 

He alone can decide what he can do; that he there- 
fore has carte blanche. 



That the French failure was not due to Russian superior- 
ity in anything except Logistics, we have the following testi- 
mony: Among the Russians there "seemed to have been no 
specific plan of campaign." 

In July, 1812, the two principal Russian armies were sepa- 
rated and were badly placed strategically. With better French 
organization, Bagration could have been cut off and 
defeated. 32 

Of Barclay de Tolly, the Russian commander-in-chief 
during the greater part of the war, it is recorded: 

With regard to his high military capacity the opinions 
were much divided, but what his adversaries could not 
deny him, without injustice, was his coolness and pru- 
dence in danger, his irrepressible perseverance, the exem- 
plary order which he maintained, as well among authorities 
called to conduct affairs as in every part of his troops/ 

It is also said that he had a genius for organization. As to the 
other side: 

Both in Spain and Russia, the Emperor's map strat- 
egy was perfect, but his logistics lacked the winning 


We have seen that there was an abundance of supplies 
and quite enough transportation. There was a great Staff, in 
numbers; in fact, the Staff alone had the numerical strength 
of about a division. The Emperor himself had given a great 
deal of thought in preparation for the campaign; he had 
looked into the widest range of details. The great deficiency 
lay in the fact that Logistics was not organized under one head 
as a branch of warfare for analysis of the requirements of the 
campaign and a cooperating response to such determined re- 
quirements. Such an organized Logistics, with the Chief of 
Staff at its head, would have had responsible chiefs of special- 
ties all coordinating to meet demands of successive situations 
and each charged with the initiative in his department, instead 
of waiting for instructions from the commander-in-chief. 


George C. Thorpe 

Without the power and authority of the initiative, subordi- 
nates, especially in the field of Logistics, soon acquire the habit 
of leaning on someone, with the result that they must always 
be prodded. It is only natural, then, that Napoleon should 
have remarked late in the campaign: 

Neither the grand provost of the gendarmes, nor the 
wagon-master, nor the staff officers, not one of them 
serves me as he ought to do. 

As the synthesis that we may get out of this lesson, it may 
be said that the Russian campaign reveals the following as 
some of the items incident to the preparation and prosecution 
of war that are not strategical or tactical, and that are, there- 
fore, logistical functions: 

Duties in connection with supplies; 


Sanitary, hospital, and ambulance service; 

Road-making and other engineer duties; 

Civil administration of occupied territory; 

Military police; 

Maps and information collection and distribution; 

Communications — i.e., telegraph and messenger service; 

Details of preparatory drills; 

Repairing and supplying arms and equipment; 

Clerical work. 

It is not pretended that these are all, or nearly all, the 
functions that are within the province of Logistics; those men- 
tioned in this summary are merely those that are made obvi- 
ous in the small amount of testimony adduced herein. 

Lest it be objected that the conditions under which one 
army operates are so different from those of another, and 
therefore that the evidence presented by one campaign is not 
sufficiently universal to be used as a basis for formulating 
principles, we will now briefly look at the methods employed 
in an army more than half a century later in operations of a 
quite different class. 


III. Atlanta Campaign 

Major Eben Swift, United States Army, is authority for the 
statement that of the thirty-five officers of a certain regi- 
ment more than half, within the first few months of the Civil 
War, were made generals of the line, and that four of them 
were soon at the head of great armies. Speaking of the regi- 
ment, he says: 3(> 

It was a good regiment and had been officered with 
great care. In a rather small way its experience had been 
great, for it had had much active work chasing Indians 
over a great expanse of country. 

Of these experienced officers who became generals he 

When it came to applying their previous knowledge 
to greater questions than came up at a frontier post or on 
an Indian scout, they found themselves without experi- 
ence, instruction, or precedent. It was a year and a half 
before the troops which they organized and commanded 
were capable of really good work, notwithstanding all the 
aid that money, patriotism, and ability could bring to 

The point is that our fighting forces were not organized 
for war. Although the clouds in the South had been growing 
darker for a long time, the officials of the Government 
charged with the duties of keeping the fighting organization 
in step with political developments had not even roughly ana- 
lyzed the situation, or, as is now said technically, made an "es- 
timate of the situation." In the first place, they did not 
properly estimate the probablities of war. In the second place, 
they did not estimate the task that would be imposed if war 


George C. Thorpe 

should come about, the strength and resources available to 
meet that task, and the details of applying such resources to 
attain the object of the war. 

That the consequences of such indolence were nearly fa- 
tal is attested by the marked success of the rebellion for the 
first two years, during which period European critics of au- 
thority in the military profession referred to our armies as 
"armed mobs" and the battles of Bull Run and Shiloh (the lat- 
ter fought after our generals had had a year's experience) as 
"comedies of errors." 

That the rebellion would have been quickly suppressed, 
as a mere riot, if the Federal forces had reasonably developed 
Logistics, seems to be the best considered verdict of military 
authorities. The immense cost and hardships of a long war are 
items of the price paid for the immunity of attending to Logis- 
tics. The cost of this preventive, Logistics, would have been 
next to nothing. 

As the Science of War consists of the systematic arrange- 
ment of facts, and the Art of War the employment of forces 
on principles based on facts, it is clear that the first step in 
preparing the fighting forces for readiness to meet the re- 
quirements of any probable war should be the collection and 
arrangement of material facts. 

If this preparation is not made before the fighting forces 
are confronting the enemy, the ensuing battle will not be an 
exhibition of the Art of W 7 ar, but merely a melee, particularly 
if both belligerents are untrained. A considerable part of the 
Civil War was a series of melees. But as experience is a 
good — if costly — school, both the Armies of the North and the 
Armies of the South acquired something of the science of war 
largely through learning what was not scientific procedure. As 
the two belligerents progressed at about the same rate toward 
proficiency, it is natural that the side that was backed by the 
greater resources should win in the end. 

Instead of applying the lessons that might have been 
learned from a study of Napoleon's Russian campaign in 
181 1 — 12, and thus making an organization for war some time 
before 1861, we find the Federal forces acquiring the same 
lessons from their own bitter experiences and applying them 
in 1864. 



General Sherman had learned the importance of Logis- 
tics, and many of his orders, issued before and after the cap- 
ture of Atlanta, show that he conceived of Logistics as being 
something subservient to and different from Strategy and 
Tactics. This is best illustrated by the elaborate organization of 
the railways in the theater of operations and the power of ini- 
tiative given to the superintendent of railways, a colonel and 
aide-de-camp. 37 The duties of sub-functionaries in this de- 
partment were sharply defined and each kind of employment 
was properly correlated to every other kind of employment, so 
that they dove-tailed nicely and cooperated perfectly/* The 
road was kept open under great difficulties. Guerillas and 
Confederate raiders were constantly successful in tearing up 
the track. In October, 1864, General Hood succeeded in 
throwing his whole army on the road and in thoroughly de- 
stroying 35.5 miles of roadway and 455 lineal feet of bridges, 
besides killing or capturing a large number of the railroad 
men. The railroad organization worked automatically, as a 
good organization must, and even before Hood's men had left 
off their destructive work the construction gangs were at work 
relaying track. Hood's destruction of depot supplies necessi- 
tated the cutting of cross-ties for relaying the track, and the 
rails had to be taken up and brought from railroads south of 
Atlanta or from Nashville, nearly 200 miles distant. In spite of 
these delays, the whole track was ready for traffic in about 
seven days. 39 

The duties of the quartermaster, commissary, and other 
staff officers were similarly well defined and their authorities 
to act were large. 40 

The commander's orders, based on clear conceptions, 
made the objective clear to all, and the head of each depart- 
ment knew his own task. 

That General Sherman was confronted with serious diffi- 
culties in his attempt to obtain an independent organization 
that could cooperate under his sole control is evidenced by his 
correspondence with the Washington authorities during April 
and May, 1864. It appears that he wanted General Allen to act 
as his chief quartermaster, and had written Allen to — 


George C. Thorpe 

Draw me up a programme whereby orders may issue 
from the War Department enabling you to act as my chief 
with power to visit by yourself or inspectors every part of 
my command, to direct the course and accumulation of 
supplies, the distribution of the means of transportation, 
and all details purely pertaining to your department. I 
must have some quartermaster whose sphere is coordinate 
with my own. (Italics not original.) 41 

Apparently Washington had disapproved this arrange- 
ment, for in a letter of May 3, 1864, to General Meigs, he says: 

I think Secretary Stanton has made a mistake in 
denying me the services of General Allen. By a general 
supervision of the whole department he could save more 
money to the Treasury than by scrutinizing 1,000,000 
separate vouchers, of purchase and expenditure. Also, by 
providing means of transportation at the very time and in 
the manner demanded by events which can not always be 
foreseen, a quartermaster can assist in achieving success. 
. . . You often feel disposed to find fault with commanders 
of troops for not consulting the experienced quartermas- 
ter. I want to do so, but the chief quartermaster is at 
Louisville, another at Nashville, another here, all under 
my orders, but each so circumscribed by conditions that I 
can not disturb them. I know this is wrong, and instead of 
commanding an armv thus, a general but drifts with his 
fate. 42 

A similar argument is presented in his letter of April 6, 
1864, to the Gommissary General: 

I ought to have near me an officer of your depart- 
ment clothed with power coextensive with my own, who 
could converse with me freely, learn my plans, the 
strength of my various columns, routes of march, nature 
of supplies, and everything, and who could direct the har- 
monious working of the whole machine. Now I have to 
deal with four distinct commissaries, with no common 
recognized head. 4 

A study of the events of this campaign clearly shows that, 
although General Sherman was making estimates for an army 



of only 100, 000 men, in addition to guards for lines of com- 
munication, and 35,000 animals, he would have heen unable 
to maintain his lines if his organization had been made on 
weaker principles; i.e., if the heads of the various logistical de- 
partments had not been given large powers. 

Strategy and Tactics here were minor problems in com- 
parison with those presented by Logistics. It appears that Gen- 
eral Sherman was his own chief logistical officer. With this 
small army and with no heavy pressure in the strategical and 
tactical functions, he was able to take the logistical supervision, 
especially in view of the good services his well-organized de- 
partments gave him. 

With his fine cooperation, it is not surprising that the 
commander's orders were a model of conciseness — brief and 
terse. They were not encumbered with details and instructions 
about functions that the commander was assured (through the 
knowledge of his organization) were being attended to. 

The whole army must be ready to march May 23d, 
stripped for battle, but equipped and provided for twenty 

This is a typical paragraph from his field orders. 

There is reason to believe that the department of military 
police, represented by the Provost Marshal, was not as thor- 
oughly organized before or at the beginning of the campaign 
as were the supply and transportation departments; some of 
the matters referred to in Special Field Orders No. 17, 4 June, 
1864, would not have then required the attention of the com- 
manding general, for the delinquencies in question would 
have been nipped in the budding and, at least, would not have 
grown to the proportions represented. As an example, take 
the following: 

Shirking, skulking, and straggling in time of danger 
are such high detestable crimes that the General com- 
manding would hardly presume them possible, were it 
not for his own observation, and the report that at this 
moment soldiers are found loafing in the cabins to the 
rear as far back as Kingston. The only proper fate of such 


George C Thorpe 

miscreants is that they be shot as common enemies to 
their profession and country; and all officers and privates 
sent to arrest them will shoot them without mercy on the 
slightest impudence or resistance. By thus wandering to 
the rear they desert their fellows who expose themselves 
in battle in the full faith that all on the rolls are present, 
and they subject themselves to capture and exchange as 
good soldiers, to which they have no title. It is hereby 
made the duty of every officer who finds such skulkers to 
deliver them to any provost guard, regardless of corps, to 
be employed in menial or hard work, such as repairing 
roads, digging drains, sinks, etc., etc. Officers, if found 
skulking, will be subject to the same penalties as enlisted 
men — viz., instant death or the hardest labor and 
treatment. 44 

As a summary, we may state that Sherman's organization 
was a great step in Logistics; the organization was largely 
made in the preparatory stage, instead of after the battle was 
on. Through giving his chief logistical officers large powers 
and keeping them in close touch with the requirements that 
would be imposed, he secured the exercise of initiative and co- 
operation. But if the organization could have been made even 
earlier, and if it had been supported by a similarly well- 
organized Logistics throughout the War Department, the cost 
would have been very much less; for it is said that methods 
were not weighed on the basis of "How much will it cost?" but 
rather, "Can it be done at any cost?" 

As this example in Logistics is an advance over that pre- 
sented in the Russian campaign, so we have now to briefly 
consider a marked further advance. 


IV. German Army 

In 1868, two years before the Franco-Prussian War, Field 
Marshal von Moltke presented to his Government plans for 
the strategic concentration of the German Army, based upon 
the supposition of war against France alone, and against 
France with allies, and founded upon years of study of facts, 
including, of course, elaborate information as to the forces 
and resources of the supposed adversaries. The following is 
an extract from a translation of this remarkable document: 45 

Should the French utilize their railway systems to 
form a quick concentration, they are compelled to detrain 
in two principal groups near Strassburg and Metz, sepa- 
rated by the Vosges Mountains. Should the probably 
smaller group at the outset not move against south 
Germany, its union with the principal force on the upper 
Moselle can only be effected by regular marches. In the 
Palatinate, we occupy interior lines of operation between 
these hostile groups. We can move against either one of 
them, or, if we are strong enough, against both at once. 
The concentration of all our forces in the Palatinate pro- 
tects the lower as well as the upper Rhine and favors an 
offensive movement into the enemy's country; the last, 
executed at the proper time, will probably forestall any in- 
vasion of the German territory. The question is, Can we, 
without danger of being disturbed, effect our concentra- 
tion beyond the Rhine in the Palatinate close to the 
French frontier? This question I unhesitatingly answer in 
the affirmative. Our mobilization is ready to the smallest 
detail. Six through railways are available for transport to 
the territory between the Moselle and the Rhine. The 
time-tables are prepared upon which are shown the day 
and hour when every unit starts and arrives. On the 
twelfth day, the first troops can detrain near the French 
frontier; on the fifteenth day, the combatants of the two 


George C. Thorpe 

army corps are there; on the twentieth day, the numbers 
have increased to 300, 000 men; on the twenty-fourth day, 
the armies are supplied with their trains. 

We have no reason to believe that the concentration 
of the French Army, for whose mobilization no data ex- 
ists, can be made more rapidly. Since Napoleon I., France 
has only effected partial mobilizations, by which the units 
of the part of the army which took the field were in- 
creased from those which remained in garrison. 

On account of the effectiveness of their railway sys- 
tems, and the ample supply of rolling stock, the French 
can, by emptying the garrisons and camps in their north- 
west territory, and without waiting for the incorporation 
of reserves, unite on the frontier in a very short time an 
army of 150,000 men. This carrying out of a rash initia- 
tive is in accordance with the national character, and has 
been discussed in military circles. Assuming that such an 
improvised army, well provided with cavalry and artillery, 
is decided upon, it would be united at Metz on the fifth 
day, and on the eighth day might cross the frontier at 
Sarrelouis. We should still have it in our power to stop 
our railway transport, and detrain our troops on the 
Rhine. To that line the invasion would still require six 
marches, and would be brought to a standstill by an equal 
force on the fourteenth day. Having control of the river 
crossing, we could in a few days assume the offensive with 
an army of double the numerical strength of the French 
army. . . . 

In case we should have war with France alone, 31,000 
men could be added to the above as the I. and II. Bavar- 
ian Corps and would at once join the Third Army; this 
would increase its strength to 130,000 men and the total 
force to 384,000 men. At the end of twenty days, after the 
railways had completed the concentration of the troops 
above mentioned, the I., II., and VI. Corps could be for- 
warded; this would increase our total force to 485,000. 

Two years later this plan was executed substantially as 
here stated, except that the time required for the concentra- 
tion was reduced, by an amended plan, by four days. 

The quoted estimate of the situation is pertinent to our 
subject, in that it reveals: 



(1) The thoroughness of the organization of the German 
fighting forces; 

(2) That the strategy and resources of the enemy had 
been analyzed; 

(3) That there had been a very detailed analysis of Ger- 
man resources; 

(4) That the latter had been applied to the requirements 
of Strategy and Tactics to attain the object of the war. 

That this immense work should have been so well done 
and that the organization was so responsive to actual condi- 
tions may be accepted as conclusive evidence that the achieve- 
ment was the result of a wise division of labor based on 
accurate analysis of the task. 

As a system of division of labor, or of "activities" (to use 
von Clausewitz's word), for the maintenance, in a broad sense, 
of the fighting forces, is the desideratum for which we are work- 
ing, we can not do better than to examine the Germany system 
in its general outline in search of principles that may have uni- 
versal application, in any form of government, to the subject 
of Logistics. 

The War Ministry is the highest administrative authority 
for the bulk of the German Army. "In a general way, it may 
be said that all affairs relating to administration, organization, 
and armament fall within the scope of its functions. With per- 
sonal, disciplinary, and purely military matters it has only in- 
direct connection, the theory being that in these the 
commanding generals — subject, of course, to imperial direc- 
tion — are supreme. Yet, as it controls the purse-strings, hardly 
any disposition, no matter what department of the service it 
may affect, can be carried to completion without its coopera- 
tion, if not without its concurrence. " 4b 

The Ministry is divided into the following branches, each 
headed by an army officer: 

(1) Central Division, charged with: all military affairs re- 
quiring the personal decision of the minister; affairs of the 
personnel of the ministry and intendancy; administration of 
the library and archives; public printing; and all matters 
relating to military decorations. 


George C. Thorpe 

(2) General War Department: tactical formations and or- 
ganizations, subdivided in function to: 4 ' 

(a) Arm\ Branch: peace and war organization, Ersatz, 
the furloughed State and Lands turm, the more 
extensive tactical exercises, changes of station, rail- 
road system, construction of roads and bridges, 
military conventions. 

(b) Branch for Foot Troops: special affairs relating to 
the infantry, rifles, foot artillery, pioneers, rail- 
road troops, aerial navigation divisions, infantry 
institutes, garrison schools, army music, target 
ranges for small-arms, system of military training 
and education, military libraries, literary affairs, 

(c) Branch for Mounted Troops: special affairs relating 
to cavalry, field artillery and the train, Military 
Riding Institute, veterinary system, gendarmerie, 
target ranges for cavalry and field artillery. 

(d) Fortification Branch: affairs relating to engineer 
corps, siege warfare, construction, armament and 
maintenance of fortresses, explosives, telegraph 
system, mines connected with bridges and tunnels, 
carrier-pigeon system, Fortification Construction 

(3) Department of Military Economy: 

(a) Finance Branch: under a civilian styled "actual pri- 
vy war councilor." 

(b) Subsistence Branch: under a civilian with title as 

(c) Clothing Branch: under a military officer; 

(d) "Servis" Branch: under a military officer; deals 
with questions relating to barracks, quarters and 
shelters, military churches, cemeteries, mainte- 
nance of places of exercise, indemnification for in- 
jury to private property. 

(4) Department for Invalid System: 

(a) Pension Branch: under a military official. 

(b) Relief Branch: under a civilian official. 



(c) Appointment Branch: under charge of a military of- 
ficer; employment of retired officers (commis- 
sioned and non-commissioned), institutes for 
invalid soldiers, war associations, execution of ju- 
dicial sentences, labor and disciplinary companies, 
military justice, church attendance, extradition, 
taxation, elections, muster-in rolls, standards and 

(5) Arms Department: 

(a) Small-arms Branch. 

(b) Artillery Branch. 

(c) Technical Branch: affairs pertaining to arsenals or 
artillery manufacturing establishments. (Each 
branch under a military officer.) 

(6) Remount Division: under a military officer; has 
charge of the itinerant horse-purchasing commissions. 

(7) Medicinal Division: headed by the General Staff 
medical officer of the Army. 

The War Ministry controls the general military treasury; 
the cavalry committee; inspection of field artillery, infantry 
schools, small-arms and ammunition factories, military veteri- 
nary system, military penal institutes; the commissions for 
testing artillery, for testing small-arms, and for examining mil- 
itary physicians; the Military Riding Institute; the Medico- 
Surgical Military Academy; the military clergy; and the 
military intendants. 

There is also a "Division for Personal Affairs," whose 
chief is an adjutant-general of high rank, which is a part of 
Imperial Headquarters, and its functions need not be dis- 
cussed here, as not material to logistical studies. 

Next to be considered is the Great General Staff. Its head, 
the Ghief of the General Staff of the Army, is directly subordi- 
nated to the Sovereign. 48 "Within the sphere of his action fall 
all matters relating to the disposition of the army in war, and 
the leading of all large bodies of troops; and, in conjunction 
with other departments, he deals with all questions touching 


George C. Thorpe 

the fighting condition of the troops and the defense of the 
country." "The Railway Brigade, together with the Aerial Nav- 
igation Division, as well as the War Academy, as regards all 
scientific matters, are subordinated to him. He superintends 
the training of officers for the General Staff, as well as the 
higher training of officers already members of that body. 
Once a year he submits to the Sovereign a list of those officers, 
who, in his judgment, should be returned from the General 
Staff to the troops, and from the troops to the General Staff. 
The Chief of the General Staff is in constant communication 
with the Minister of War upon all questions relating to the 
military training of the army, its organization in peace and 
war, and its transition to a war formation." He is also in direct 
communication with the General Staff serving with corps. 

The Chief of the General Staff of the Army has three im- 
mediate assistants, who "constitute an intermediate authority 
between him and the divisions of the Great General Staff." 49 
One of these assistants is his representative when the Chief is 
prevented from discharging his duty from any cause. These 
assistants take final action on certain minor matters, acting "by 

The division of labor in the Great General Staff is as 

Central Division: conducts correspondence of the Chief 
with "institutes and individuals within and without the sphere 
of his authority"; has charge of the "economic affairs of the 
entire General Staff, as well as of the personal affairs of the 
officers and those of officials of the Great General Staff." 

First Division: "collects and arranges material affording 
information in reference" to certain foreign armies. 

Second Division: collects and furnishes information as to 
the military strength and resources of the German Empire. 

Third Division: duties similar to those of the First Divi- 
sion except in reference to certain other foreign armies. 



Fourth Division: questions of technical nature and touch- 
ing siege warfare. 

Railway Division: embraces the preparation "of military 

transports for war; the conduct of military transports in con- 
nection with the maneuvers; the transportation of men fur- 
loughed from or joining their regiments; the training of 
officers in the duties pertaining to the military railway system; 
the examination of projected lines from the military point of 
view; the collection of statistics of home and foreign railways, 
as well as all other matters connected with the military railway 

Division of Military History: collecting and arranging all 
material falling within its province; critical description of past 
wars; administration of war archives and of the Great General 
Staff library. 

Geographical Statistical Division: compiles military geo- 
graphical data as to all parts of territory that may become im- 
portant in connection with the conduct of wars; also 
geographical and statistical matter necessary for General Staff 
work; has charge of maps prepared by its personnel. 

Chief of Survey: divided into the following: 

(a) Trigonometrical Division: covers several of the Ger- 
man States with a network of principal triangula- 
tion, and carries out a complete triangulation of 
the same; prepares general topographical surveys. 

(b) Topographical Division: topographical surveys of 
certain German States. 

(c) Cartographical Division: charged with preparation 
and correction of General Staff and other maps; 
printing and photographic work for military 

The General Staff serving with troops or at fortresses is 
subject to the orders of the General, Gouveneur, or 
Kommandant of the unit with which it is serving. General 


George C. Thorpe 

Staff officers serving at corps headquarters perform their 
General Staff duties under the direction of the Chief of the 
General Staff of the Army Corps, who has also a general over- 
sight over the office work of the Adjudantur, the Inten- 
dantur, Corps Auditeur, and other staff officers at 
headquarters. In the absence of the commanding general, he 
carries on current business "by authority" (of the general), 
questions of courts-martial and leaves of absence being re- 
ferred to the senior division commander of the corps. 50 

The duties of General Staff officers at headquarters of a 
division are similar to those of corps headquarters, except that 
the Chief has no supervisory authority over the other depart- 
ments of the Staff. 

The following is a general outline of the peace duties of 
General Staff officers serving with troops and at fortresses: 7l 

Calculations and arrangements for marches; 

Sheltering and providing for the distribution of troops; 

Transportation: the use of roads, railways, and tele- 

Political questions; 

Strength, conditions, and distribution of neighboring 

Non-technical matters connected with artillery, engineers, 
pontoons, bridges, defense of fortresses; questions with 
foreign Governments touching the apprehension and 
return of deserters, maps, plans, reconnaissances, and 
topographical sketches. 

In war the duties of the General Staff serving with troops 
and at fortresses are: 

Drafting and working out necessary instructions relating 

to shelter, safety, marching, and fighting; 
Timelv transmission of orders; 
Collecting, sifting, and classifying information relating to 

the nature and proper utilization of the theater of war; 

procurement of maps and plans; 
Collection and valuation of incoming information relative 

to the hostile army; 



Maintenance of effectiveness of the troops and keeping 
constantly informed of their condition in every respect; 

Keeping historical records of events of campaigns being 
prosecuted, and preparing proper reports thereon; 

Special tasks, especially reconnaissance. 

The Higher Adjudantur: selected from graduates of the 
War Academy who have not entered the General Staff, or 
from officers who have shown special aptitude as battalion or 
regimental adjutants. An adjudantur is assigned to each bri- 
gade, and to each division, and two or more to each corps. 

The duties of the adjudantur branch are similar to those 
of the adjutant-general's branch in the American service, so 
far as such duties do not fall within the province of the Gen- 
eral Staff (German)/' 2 

Intendantur: is a department attached to the headquarters 
of each corps and to each division. 

The corps intendant is head of the Corps Intendantur. 
The Corps Intendantur is an intermediate authority between 
the War Ministry and the special subordinate supply depart- 
ments. The Chief Intendant deals directly with the War Minis- 
try, but is subject to the orders of the commander of the 

The functions of the Corps Intendantur are: appoint- 
ment of paymasters; procurement of forage and breadstuff's, 
cloth and other articles required to clothe and equip the 
troops, and land, buildings, and utensils required for comfort 
and shelter of troops; the supervision of granaries and 
bakeries, the personal affairs of the officers of the supply de- 
partments, and of the administration of barracks and hospi- 
tals; cooperation in the administration of funds and property 
pertaining to the system of military education and training; 
certain affairs relating to the mobilization of corps administra- 
tive departments, to pensions, and to technical institutes of the 
artillery and engineer systems, and to remount depots; com- 
pensation to municipal authorities on account of quarters, 
subsistence, forage, and transportation furnished troops; the 
military economic affairs of staffs, troops, non-regimental offi- 


George C. Thorpe 

cers and officials of the corps not attached to divisions, or who 
are not allotted to the Division Intendantur. 53 
The Corps Intendantur is divided into: 

(a) Finance division; 

(b) Division of supplies in kind other than clothing; 

(c) Clothing division; 

(d) "Garrison Administration" division; 

(e) "Hospital Administration" division. 

A chief constructor is assigned to each corps intendant for 
expert reference in building matters. 

The functions of the Division Intendantur embrace all 
matters relating to the pay, commutation of quarters, and 
travel allowances of divisional troops and officers; the exami- 
nation and settlement of property and money accounts, in- 
cluding the unexpected inspections of the disbursing offices 
pertaining to the divisional troops; matters relating to the 
clothing and equipment of such troops; participation in the bi- 
ennial musters; the subsistence of troops and reservists. >4 

Since the Chief of the General Staff serving with troops 
has general supervision over the Adjuntantur and Inten- 
dantur, and immediate control over the General Staff, the 
commanding general is relieved of all details. He has onlv to 
formulate his general plans and communicate them to the 
staff. Although the general is the supreme authority in his 
unit and although he can assume authority in a particular 
case, the General Staff and Administration officials are in di- 
rect communication with their respective heads in Berlin and 
are responsible themselves in their provinces. 

As this organization is uniform and a growth of years of 
experience, it becomes more and more a natural machine and, 
as a matter of course, works with unfailing cooperation. Fur- 
thermore, it represents a division of labor that tends to culti- 
vate the officers concerned therein as highly specialized 
experts. The often-heard objection to such machine-like or- 
ganization, that it robs the individual of the power of acting 
alone — robs him of the power of the initiative — is not applica- 



ble here, because each functionary has the responsibility and 
considerable authority within his sphere. The organization is 
in harmony with modern methods of doing business, wherein 
specialization is the key to success. 


V. National Organization of Fighting Forces 

However good the German Army system may be, in refer- 
ence to the administration of details, it does not neces- 
sarily follow that such system, in its entirety, would be 
applicable to armies and navies under forms of government 
different from the German. 

The broad characteristics of the German system are: 

(1) Centralization of control, and 

(2) Decentralization in education. 

To enquire whether or not these characteristics are favor- 
able to the attainment of certain results under all, or certain, 
conditions, we must specify the conditions and pose the results 

We are concerned with warfare. Now the object had in 
view by a State when it goes to war is to so demonstrate its ap- 
plied fighting power as to eliminate effective resistance to the 
realization of the State's policies. 

Hence the State, through its central power representing 
the General Will, must determine when its policies are being 
resisted to an extent which necessitates the employment of the 
fighting forces, and, as such central power may be presumed 
to have the best evidence of the nature and location of the re- 
sistance to its policies, it is logically the power to determine the 
manner, or broad general plan, of employing the fighting 
forces in order to accomplish the political object. 

But the central political power is not usually represented 
by military or naval experts. No one office can be presumed to 
specialize, or to be able to specialize, in statecraft, in military 
employments, and in naval employments. Hence, there natu- 
rally will be provided, in close touch with the political author- 



ity, a commission of experts who will be able to perfect plans, 
responsive to the political demands, that will make the most 
effective use of the fighting forces, based on resources avail- 

The employment of the whole fighting force thus will be 
centrally controlled by the political power through the latter's 
declaration of war, its decision as to the object to be attained 
by the war, and its direction to cease hostilities when the politi- 
cal authority decides that the object has been attained or that 
it can not be attained. 

In other words, Strategy is controlled by, and originates 
with, the political government. The advantages of thus cen- 
tralizing Strategy are so obvious that it would seem unneces- 
sary to discuss the matter if we were not confronted with 
examples, in history and governmental organizations, of prac- 
tice not in harmony with this theory. Wherever we find com- 
manders sent to the theater of operations without a 
well-defined mission, or a nation's Strategy being resolved by 
separate boards for the Army and Navy, we have decentral- 
ized Strategy, which must be expected to result in estimates of 
the situation too narrowly viewed or based on insufficient 

But this c entralization extends only to control; as to exec u- 
t ion, there must be decentralization. And by execution is meant 
the working out of the details of the use of military forces in 
combat and the details of the use of combats for the object of 
the war. The execution must be in the hands of experts. The 
political authority signifies what is to be done; military and na- 
val experts decide how it shall be accomplished. 

Now, the object of the war is to be attained through the 
aggregate results of combats, and the theory of planning these 
combats as a whole, looking to the object of the war, is Strat- 
egy, according to von Clausewitz. Some of the combats will be 
sea battles; some will be land battles; and some may be a com- 
bined employment of land and sea forces in a single combat. 
But since the object of the war is to be accomplished through 
the amalgamated result of all the battles, the great plan must 
be based upon a composite view of the land and sea possibili- 
ties, and the best strategic decision will be that which makes 


George C. Thorpe 

the most economical combined use of the army and navy. This 
implies that the details of Strategy must be determined by a 
commission of military and naval experts. 

C entrali zation in control and decentralization in exem- 
tion rest on the same principle; na mely : that the task is left to 
t he functionary, or functionaries, who lsTor are, in the best sit - 
uation to es timate the ta sk. The central location gives a gen- 
eral view or all the parts in their proper inter-relations and 
reveals what should be required of each part. Such general 
view could not be had by any of the parts.\On the other hand, 
the local view reveals the local situation in much greater detail 
and exactitude than does the general view; as the manner of 
xecution depends upon the local situation, the local com- 
nander is the one to decide how he will execute. 

The agency through which control is to be centralized 
and the great tactical tasks assigned should be a National 
Board of Strategy. If it be composed of members representing 
the political authority and members representing technical 
knowledge of the employment of forces in combat, the Board 
will be a meeting-point where the political object will be ex- 
pressed in tactical tasks for the land and naval forces. 

Assuming for the moment that these principles are 
sound, we may test them by practical application, say, to a case 
where both belligerents have land and naval forces, the coun- 
try of belligerent A being separated from the country of bel- 
ligerent B bv an ocean, and belligerent B being en route, with 
land and naval forces, presumably to invade the country of 
belligerent A. 

The centralized Board of Strategy of belligerent A esti- 
mates the situation by comparing the opposing forces, their 
respective strengths and distributions, whereby the enemy's 
probable intentions and answering courses open to us, may be 
premised, and conclusions reached as to what further disposi- 
tions should be made of the defending forces in order to de- 
feat the invader's plans. Such decisions would assign tasks to 
the Army and to the Navy, so that these two main divisions of 
labor would fit nicely together, without overlapping or 

The War Department would receive the Army task and 



would parcel it out to the largest Army units. Commanders of 
the latter would be in possession of the best evidence of the lo- 
cal circumstances of their respective commands, and thus 
would be in the best position to decide what should be done 
within their jurisdictions to accomplish their tasks. These com- 
manders would, of course, further divide tasks for distribu- 
tion to lower commands. In each step the order would state 
what was to be done — not how it should be done. 

Similarly, the Navy Department would receive the Navy's 
whole task and parcel it out to its fleets, from which missions 
would go out to subordinate units. 

Attached to the headquarters of large Army administra- 
tive units and to the flagships of large Navy administrative 
units are staff officers for expressing and accomplishing the 
will of the commander. When the commander, upon whose 
staff these officers serve, receives orders assigning his unit a 
task, he notifies his Chief of Staff thereof and of his general 
plan for satisfying the mission. The appropriate assistant for- 
mulates orders for the execution of the plan. These orders, 
duly promulgated, start the machinery of each staff depart- 
ment, such as subsistence, equipment, sanitary and medical, 
pay, engineer, transport, etc., for the accomplishment of all 
means necessary to the execution of the orders, as respectively 
estimated by these functionaries. The latter, being specialists 
in their departments, are in the best position to estimate their 
tasks, based on facilities available, and they are therefore the 
proper officials to be charged with the responsibility for such 
execution, and to that end should be given large authority 
therein. While under the general supervision of the Chief of 
Staff, as the intermediary between these subsidiary function- 
aries and the tactical commander, and under the general con- 
trol of their respective chiefs at the seat of government, they 
should be given the widest possible freedom of action within 
the limits of complying with the law and adhering to necessar- 
ily fixed regulations. 

As to the nature of the centralization of control within the 
tactical unit: the military command, of course, must be su- 
preme and the administration subsidiary. The commander's 
function is that of deciding upon questions of conflict of au- 


George C. Thorpe 

thority within his jurisdiction, of imposing disciplinary re- 
quirements, or even of deciding that some particular staff 
officer's proposed method of complying with orders is not 
such as the commander desires and directing that some differ- 
ent method be followed; but, as a matter of routine, the com- 
mander would not care to overhaul the execution of details by 
his staff officers, for the commander has quite enough to en- 
gage his attention in his own large province. He would not 
care, for example, to approve requisitions, vouchers, esti- 
mates, etc., for if he dissipates his working hours in making 
the endless calculations that would be necessary to the intelli- 
gent approval or disapproval of these details, there will be 
neglect of the large functions. Approval, without such calcula- 
tions, as a matter of routine, must be based on the respective 
staff officer's recommendation, and is therefore meaningless 
and contributes only to delay and a waste of labor. So long as 
the staff officer is efficient, the responsibility should be placed 
on his shoulders; if he is not efficient, he should be displaced 
and either sent back to school or eliminated. 

The centralization of control over these staff officers must 
be had from the seat of government by intermediaries be- 
tween such staff serving in the field of operations and the po- 
litical government, for the arrangement of estimates for 
legislative consideration, the distribution of appropriations, 
the collection and distribution of information material to each 
department, etc. There must be a kind of strategy of Logistics, 
centrally located, and a tactics of Logistics decentralized. 

While there should be but one Board of Strategy — the 
National Board for the consideration of plans for the employ- 
ment of the whole fighting force — Tactics and Logistics, in 
general, are specialized functions for the different services. 

But there are features of Logistics that are not peculiar to 
either the land or naval forces, but common to both, and 
where they can be exercised in unity, in the interests of 
economy and efficiency, they should be organized as national 

Commercial manufacturing industries teach us that one 
factory organization can turn out a given quantity of standard 
product more economically than can several factory organiza- 



tions. There is a saving in standardization of machinery and 
methods and in overhead costs. This knowledge should be ap- 
plied in consolidating factories producing articles lor the 
whole fighting force. 

(1) Ordnance: In addition to the argument for reducing 
cost, it is desirable to standardize ordnance material for the 
whole of the national services, as far as the nature of these 
services will permit, for the following reasons: 

(a) The product of the united expert thought of the two 
services, as to improvements, should be enjoyed by both serv- 
ices. During the experience in actual war it often happens that 
one branch of the service is much more actively engaged than 
the other, with the result that the former obtains the lion's 
share of experience that makes for progress of its ordnance. 
New inventions spring up out of this experience, and the ord- 
nance factory is the tangible clearing-house through which 
these proposed improvements pass; if ordnance manufacture 
is divided between the services, the factory representing the 
branch of the service that is the more actively employed will 
advance more rapidly than will the other branch. If the manu- 
facture is under one management, the proposed improve- 
ments will, as a matter of course, be weighed for their 
applicability to both Army and Navy ordnance, from the first. 

(b) Interchangeability of weapon permits of inter- 
changeability of ammunition, which is a very great advantage, 
because at a given point in the theater of operations one 
branch of the service may be exhausted of ammunition and 
the other branch supplied under circumstances where the tac- 
tical requirement would demand the employment of the 
branch that lacks ammunition. The experience of the Spanish- 
American War and the Philippine Insurrection, during which 
the Navy and Army were supplied with different small-arms, 
resulted in the adoption of the same rifle for both the Army 
and Navy of the United States. 

(c) Interchangeability of weapons would also permit 
greater latitude in the temporary use of naval guns on shore 
at critical points. 

(2) Uniforms and Clothing: Many articles of clothing are al- 


George C. Thorpe 

ways the same for both branches of the service such as shoes, 
underclothing, socks, etc. Furthermore if the determination of 
the uniforming of the two branches of the service is scientific- 
ally based, there would appear no reason why they should not 
be uniformed alike, each distinguished only by insignia de- 
vices. Both branches must be provided against the extremes of 
climate; the remaining determinants are nature of work and 
visibility. The soldier, like the sailor, is largely employed in 
managing machinery; there is no work required of either 
branch that necessitates a peculiarly naval or military uniform. 
The question of visibility is probably somewhat more impor- 
tant with the Army than with the Navy; and yet there are cir- 
cumstances under which enemy craft might be close aboard, 
where silhouetted figures would be at a disadvantage. Preva- 
lent naval uniforms, of flapping trousers, flat hat, and open 
breast, are not scientific selections, and are so out of harmony 
with modern dress that the sailor is made unpleasantly con- 
spicuous and is discriminated against in public places ashore; 
he is at a disadvantage, as to dress; with his soldier brethren. 
Therefore uniforms and clothing should be standardized, as 
between the Army and Navy, and should be manufactured 
under one organization, which might provide the uniforms 
and clothing of officers as well as of men. 

(3) Hospital and Sanitary Service: The functions of this 
branch are precisely the same for both branches: sanitation, 
prevention of disease, and care of the sick and wounded. 
These, with the medical officer's functions in regulating na- 
tional quarantine and immigration, are most economically 
carried out by a single corps — the National Sanitary and Medi- 
cal Corps. It includes within its jurisdiction the post-graduate 
education in preparation for the efficient discharge of the 
stated functions, the detailing of officers to the different na- 
tional requirements, and the ambulance and hospital services. 
One great saving in such consolidation, instead of maintaining 
separate organizations for the several public needs, would be 
effected through having a single hospital at a given point 
available to the united services, instead of maintaining par- 
tially filled hospitals at a single place for each of the services. 



These are the principal logistical features that could be 
consolidated in the interests of efficiency and economy. To be 
strictly logical, it would seem that a National Bui can of Intelli- 
gence, for obtaining all information that would be useful to 
the fighting services, and classifying and distributing the 
same, should be included under the logistical function. On t he- 
other hand, the product of such a bureau's activities consists 
principally of facts for reasoning in Strategy and Tactics, and 
so should be brought into the closest possible touch with tac- 
tical and strategical functionaries. Information is obtained in 
many ways; not only by means of attaches and intelligence of- 
ficers, in times of peace, and by spies, but by means of scout- 
ing and reconnaissances on a large scale, in time of war. If we 
are to assign the intelligence function to Logistics, the logis- 
tical staff would be charged with responsibility for 
reconnaissances — activities not peculiar to Logistics. Of course, 
a great deal of information obtained is valuable to logistical 
functionaries, and would naturally be systematically supplied 
to them from the information bureau, no matter whether the 
latter be placed under Logistics or elsewhere. 

To find a place for these national Logistics we must look 
to the National Board of Strategy; as the latter distributes 
plans common to all the forces, so the former distributes 
means common to all. We may look at the organization of this 
national Strategy only so far as is necessary to orient Logistics. 

Outline of National Board of Strategy: The selection of mem- 
bers of this Board should be based on qualifications presumed 
to be possessed by reason of other employments and training. 
As the Board's estimates will be reasoned from: (1) the inter- 
national political situation, (2) national policies, (3) principles 
of international law, (4) technical principles of warfare, 
(5) information of existing relative situations and conditions of 
possible enemy forces and our own, it would seem that an ap- 
propriate composition might be as follows: 

(1) Head of Department of State, or Foreign Affairs: pre- 
sides and advises as to international political situation 
and national policies in general. 


George C. Thorpe 

(2) Head of War Department: advises as to condition of 
Army and military policy. 

(3) Head of Navy Department, or Marine: advises as to 
condition of Navy and naval policy. 

(4) One selected Army officer. 

(5) One selected Navy officer. 

(6) President of National War College. 

(7) Chief of National Bureau of Intelligence. 

In addition to its function of determining the national 
strategy, the Board should have authority to appoint the Pres- 
ident of the War College and the Chief of the Bureau of Intel- 
ligence, with the limitation or proviso that the incumbents of 
such two offices should not, at the same time, be officers of 
the same branch of the service. The Board should also be 
charged with the duty of recommending to the General Staffs 
of the Army and of the Navy officers to be appointed as the 
fourth and fifth above-named members. 

There should be an administrative officer attached to the 
Board of Strategy to attend to its business needs; he would be 
charged with the following functions: 

(a) Supervise clerical force necessary for the discharge 
of the Board's business; 

(b) Be charged with the economic affairs of the Board, 
such as defraying expenses, making estimates, etc. 

(c) Act as organ of expression as between the Board of 
Strategy and the three national logistical depart- 

(d) And otherwise act as secretary of the Board of 

Through its administrative officer, the Board of Strategy 
would be the connecting link between the political depart- 
ments of the government and the national logistical branches, 
and between the latter and the War and Navy Departments. 

The National Bureau of Intelligence would collect, clas- 
sify, and appropriately distribute, either upon initiative or re- 
quest, all information material to the fighting forces to: 



(1) National Board of Strategy. 

(2) Navy Department General Staff. 

(3) War Department General Staff. 

(4) The several logistical departments. 

(5) Other functionaries throughout the service. 

The Bureau would also receive suggestions from every 
part of the fighting services as to points upon which informa- 
tion is desired so that the Bureau may have concrete tasks in 
the way of collecting information. (The search for facts is apt 
to be better rewarded when the searcher has a particular thing 
to find, or a particular subject to demonstrate, than when he is 
simply to search for facts or truths in general.) 

We may now survey the field as to the division of Logis- 
tics in the different elements of the fighting machine, and in 
each case it will be necessary to have a general outline of the 
whole organization in order to see the exact relation of 


VI. Naval Organization 

Assuming that the great estimate of the strategical situation 
is made by the National Board of Strategy, and that it dif- 
ferentiates Army and Navy tasks and makes the proper ap- 
portionments, we arrive at the point where the Navy task 
reaches the Navy Department and the Army task reaches the 
War Department. Let us first consider the division of labor 
that will be necessary on the part of the Navy to execute its 

The Navy Department is presided over by a representa- 
tive of the political government, styled Minister of Marine, 
Secretary of the Navy, or some such title. Let us adopt "Minis- 
ter of Marine." 

He is intermediary between the political government and 
the Navy — passive as to the former, active as to the latter. 
Whether he be a civilian without expert knowledge of naval 
technics or an officer of the Navy, he must have assistants 
among whom will be divided the functions of parceling out 
the naval task to the different elements of the machine. As 
Strategy has already been attended to by the National Board, 
the functions remaining to the Navy are tactical and logistical. 
"Tactical" is here used in the broad sense of meaning "the 
theory of the use of military forces in combat." As the "theory 
of the use of combats for the object of the war" (i.e., Strategy) 
is provided for by the National Board of Strategy, that branch 
of warfare is outside of the separate considerations of the 
Army and Navy Departments. These, working separately, are 
interested only in the use of forces in combat. "Logistical" is 
used as having reference to the provision of means for 
prosecuting war. 

The head of the Navy Department, then, will be assisted 
by two definite cabinets or boards: (1) a General Staff, as rep- 



resenting the tactical functions, and (2) a Logistical Staff, rep- 
resenting the logistical functions. 

The task assigned by the National Board of Strategy to 
the Navy will be the latter's mission; it will be expressed, of 
course, in general terms. In order that the task may be accom- 
plished, its expression must be converted from general terms 
to specific tasks, and each specific task must be assigned to an 
appropriate functionary. This converting process involves a 
vast amount of technical work in distributing the task to the 
naval machine, through the promulgation of technically ex- 
pressed orders, in such manner that the various units and 
functionaries will be coordinated for harmonious execution. A 
General Staff, composed of experts representing the different 
elements that must contribute to this performance, is the logi- 
cal agency to act as the intermediary between the Minister of 
Marine and the remainder of the Navy. Thereby we provide 
for the utilization of naval forces to win the combat. 

The supreme direction of the functions of providing the 
means is likewise a task too large for one man, both as to mass 
and diversity of activities required therefor. The agents of the 
supreme authority of the Navy for these various logistical 
functions compose the Logistical Staff. 

Similarly, the commanders of units receiving missions too 
large for the direction of one man must be provided with tac- 
tical and logistical staffs. 

The General Staff and Logistical Staff should be homoge- 
neous organizations; i.e., the different general and logistical 
staffs should be miniature representatives of the correspond- 
ing central organizations. This can best be realized through 
general staff corps and logistical staff corps, the former com- 
posed by temporary, the latter by permanent, details of suffi- 
cient numbers of officers and men of different grades to 
supply all the staffs after proper training therefor. 

In order to eliminate needless routine and wasted effort, 
each functionary of these staffs should be given a wide range 
of authority to dispose of business pertaining to his depart- 
ment. Each should be regarded as charged with the execution, 
in coordination, of a part of a whole plan, or a definite part of 
an entire administration, and as a specialist, therefor; his func- 


George C. Thorpe 

tions regulated, in general, by the law creating his office and 
by the general regulations of the organization; the functional 
details of his office are either routine or such as grow natu- 
rally out of orders promulgating a general plan or administra- 
tion; in either case, he is a specialist to estimate and discharge 
such details, and should be answerable only for results. Thus 
each specialist works in his own province without the med- 
dling of non-specialists. 

The General Staff may be regarded as a personality, or 
corporation, for certain purposes, such as the determination 
of plans for the employment of the tactical units, naval policy, 
etc. For arriving at corporate decisions there should be pre- 
scribed for it stated meetings, as well as meetings at the call of 
the Chief of Staff, its presiding officer. For deliberations, in 
preparation for its conclusions, it may unite with itself in cor- 
porate meeting such of the members of the Logistical Staff as 
may be presumed to be cognizant of facts that might be mate- 
rial to the question under consideration. 

The Logistical Staff should also have stated, or special, 
meetings, presided over by the Chief of Staff, to compare 
their estimates of important plans, to understand how 
coordinate departments propose to execute important mat- 
ters, so that they may harmonize their executions or submit 
possible conflicts to the Head of the Navy Department for 

Taking this logistical division of functions as a guide, the 
division of labor as to details might be expected almost to ef- 
fect itself naturally; but this is not as simple a matter as it 
might seem at first glance, for in many cases there will be 
found conflicting reasons for assigning a minor task to one 
branch or the other. At the same time we will be assisted in 
reaching the correct distribution by remembering that the ob- 
ject of classification is to eliminate duplication and waste; such 
elimination is effected by grouping functionaries with refer- 
ence to the intimate relationships of their functions. 

Starting, as a premise, with the fundamental division of 
labor as herein proposed, the prime function of the General 
Staff is to formulate tactical plans for the employment of naval 
forces, during war as well as during peace in preparation for 
war. In order that its plans may be based on facts, the first es- 



sential is that the General Staff should include within itself 
means for collecting, classifying, and distributing the latest in- 
telligence in reference to possible or actual enemies. There 
should be, therefore, the closest connection between infor- 
mation-collecting and tactical plan-making. A second branch 
of the primary function of the General Staff, according to our 
premise the organ of the Head of the Navy, is that of promul- 
gation of orders resulting from planning. The General Staff 
must, then, have within its own organization a branch for 
formulating orders. 

Secondary, but intimately connected, functions are: 

(1) Securing the personnel necessary for tactical employ- 
ment: prescribing qualifications of officers and men, and 
exercising supervision over all recruiting and admissions, ex- 
cept to logistical branches. 

(2) Prescribing education and training for all personnel 
within its jurisdiction, and exercising general supervision over 
such educational and training systems, in order that the Gen- 
eral Staff may be assured that the personnel is qualified to 
meet tactical requirements imposed in tactical plans. 

(3) Directing assignments of all tactical personnel and ad- 
ministering the law as to promotions. Assigning logistical func- 
tionaries upon recommendation of the Logistical Staff. 

(4) Exercising higher functions as to the administration of 
discipline throughout the whole Navy. 

(5) Prescribing rules of procedure for the General Staff in 
accordance with the law authorizing the creation of such staff. 

(6) Making such organizations as may be necessary to ef- 
fectuate its other functions. 

(7) Making such inspections, by members of the General 
Staff, as to inform itself of the state of efficiency of the Navy. 

The Logistical Staff assumes the functions of providing all 
means not provided by the General Staff itself for the execu- 
tion of the orders of the General Staff and for the general 
economic administration of the Navy. These functions 

(1) Education and training of logistical functionaries. 


George C. Thorpe 

(2) Prescribing qualifications for admission into this 
branch of the service; making requisition to the General Staff 
for the appointment and assignment to the Logistical Staff of 
the personnel necessary therefor. 

(3) Making recommendations to the General Staff in ref- 
erence to promotions in the Logistical Staff. 

(4) Exercising all the functions of construction and repair 
of ships, and of all public works at shore stations. 

(5) Manufacturing all ordnance, equipment, uniforms 
and clothing, and repairing and distributing or receiving the 

(6) Exercising all functions in connection with Hospital 
and Sanitary Services, including their supply. 

(7) Procuring and distributing, in kind, or authorizing the 
purchase of, subsistence. 

(8) Procuring and distributing, in kind, or authorizing the 
purchase of, all other requisite supplies. 

(9) Exercising all the functions in connection with pay and 
allowances of the personnel of the Navy, including accounts 

(10) Exercising all the functions of auditing accounts. 

(11) Disbursing funds. 

(12) Exercising the functions of providing transportation 
for the Navy and overseas transportation for the Army, and 
collecting, classifying, and distributing upon initiative or 
demand (especially to the General Staff) data concerning 
transportation facilities that might be material to tactical con- 

(13) Providing for the civil government in naval districts 
of occupied territory, including advanced bases, not otherwise 
provided with a competent civil government. 

(14) Providing the legal services necessary to the adminis- 
tration of the Navy. 

(15) Formulating estimates for submission to the Congress 
or Parliament. 

(16) Providing for the religious and ethical needs of the 

(17) Investigating and making recommendations upon 
claims for pensions and claims for damages caused by naval 



(18) Exercising all the functions of construction, repair, 
and maintenance of machinery used or to be used in the 
Navy, and providing all the personnel for the maintenance 
and operation of such machinery. In this connection the term 
"machinery" shall include all mechanical appliances, short of 
the ship itself, not included under ordnance. 

(19) Exercising supervision over the administration of 
shore establishments, such as dockyards, barracks, and 

It is not pretended that the foregoing are all the functions 
of either the General Staff or the Logistical Staff; the group- 
ing merely indicates the general line of division. 

An outline of the organization of the whole Navy, then, 
would appear as follows: 

Minister of Marine: political Head of the Navy; interme- 
diary between the National Board of Strategy and General 
and Logistical Staffs; and between such staffs and the Head of 
State and Legislative Branch. Has authority of disapproval 
and direction over any and all offices or functionaries of the 
Navy, within such limitations as may be prescribed by law. 

I. General Staff of the Navy: 

1 . Chief of Staff: organ of expression of the Head of the 
Navy to all subordinates in tactical matters and for the Gen- 
eral Staff acting as a whole; presides over the General Staff 
and Logistical Staff when in assembled session, and has gen- 
eral supervision of the administration of the offices of such 

2. Chief of Personnel: exercises general supervision over ap- 
pointments of cadets and officers, except to Logistical Staff; 
recruiting; casualties; reinforcements; assignments of officers 
of the line except to flag rank; directs practical training, in 
general, of personnel (except of the Logistical Staff Corps) be- 
fore assignment to the Fleet, but has no control over person- 
nel at the National War College or Staff College except to 
assign to duty therefrom; is the organ of expression of the 
Head of the Navy in the higher administration of disciplinary 


George C. Thorpe 

measures; administers the law in regard to promotions and 

3. Chief of Staff College: presides over the academic staff of 
the Naval Staff College and is responsible for the administra- 
tion and efficiency of that college; presents for the considera- 
tion of the General Staff tactical principles developed by 
historical research or original work at the Staff College; pres- 
ents war plans and plans for instructional employment of the 
fleets; presents information of technical value acquired from 
the National Bureau of Intelligence; advises as to doctrines; is 
responsible for the classification and deposit of war diaries; 
advises as to educational matters throughout the Navy beyond 
the province assigned to the Chief of Personnel. 

4. Chief of Operations: executes or directs the execution of 
plans adopted by the General Staff for the employment of the 
fleets, through the issuance of technically formulated orders; 
assigns flag officers and chiefs of logistical branches; presents 
to the General Staff recommendations for promotions of offi- 
cers to flag rank; orders boards of inspection to ascertain the 
efficiency of large units, reviews reports of such inspections, 
and submits a summary thereof to the General Staff; has gen- 
eral supervision over coast defense and other shore establish- 
ments under naval jurisdiction. 

5. Chief of Naval Militia: exercises full direction over or- 
ganization of naval militias and their mobilization in accord- 
ance with the general plans adopted by the General Staff; 
prescribes courses of training and education for such militias, 
and inspects them to determine their fitness for service, 
submitting reports thereon to the General Staff. 

6. Chief of Communications: advises the General Staff as to 
lines of communication that may be employed during war; or- 
ganizes such lines as are required for the plans adopted by the 
General Staff; exercises general supervision over their 

7. Chief for External Affairs: relations with enemy and en- 
emy territory; interpreters, press, and various agents; secret 
service; telegraphic service; miscellaneous tactical affairs not 
assigned to the jurisdiction of the whole staff or to other mem- 
bers thereof. 



II. Logistical Staff: the following sections, each headed by 
a Director: 

1. Mechanical Engineering: has jurisdiction over the design- 
ing, construction, and repair of all propulsion machinery em- 
ployed in naval craft, other than aerial, and of shops and 
agencies for such work; prepares estimates for this section's 
requisites, including estimates for fuel and other supplies re- 
quired for the maintenance and operations of the propulsion 
machinery of naval craft other than aerial; etc. 

2. Ordnance: provides the National Ordnance Factory with 
specifications of kind and amount of ordnance required; 
makes requisition thereon for ordnance and repairs to ord- 
nance, and exercises generally the function of supervision of 
the efficiency and distribution of naval ordnance. 

3. Naval Construction: has jurisdiction over the designing, 
construction, and repair of all naval craft, other than aerial, 
and of shops and agencies for such work; prepares estimates 
for this section's needs. 

4. Finance and Supply: has jurisdiction over the disburse- 
ment of all funds appropriated to the Navy, the purchase of 
all supplies not provided for under other sections, the rendi- 
tion of estimates, not otherwise provided for under other sec- 
tions, keeping accounts incidental to these duties, etc. Also 
provides the National Uniform and Clothing Factory with 
specifications of kind and amount of its product that will be 
required for the Navy, and makes requisitions thereon from 
time to time. 

5. Sanitation and Medical Service: notifies the Chief of the 
National Sanitary and Medical Service of the numbers of offi- 
cers and men, amounts and kinds of supplies, equipment, and 
hospital accommodations that will be required for the Navy, 
makes distribution thereof, and supervises their execution of 

6. Advanced Base: provides for the military defense of such 
advanced bases as the general plan indicates should be held; 
provides and supervises training of personnel for such bases; 
provides personnel for land security of other shore establish- 
ments, including the coast defenses; submits estimates to other 
sections for such supplies and equipment as may be necessary. 

7. Signal Serince: provides for the telegraphic and signal 


George C. Thorpe 

services, messenger and courier services. 

8. Aerial Service: has jurisdiction over the construction and 
repair and designing of aerial craft and the shops and 
agencies for such work; organizes the aerial service to meet 
the requirements of the general plan; trains and exercises the 
organization; submits estimates and requisitions for the needs 
of the section. 

9. Legal Service: renders legal advice whenever required in 
any department or section of the Navy Department; directs 
the preparation of charges coming under the original jurisdic- 
tion of the Navy Department, and follows their prosecution; 
reviews the records of such cases for final approval and execu- 
tion of sentence; represents the Navy Department in any 
other legal controversies that may arise; interprets the law ap- 
plicable to the Navy upon proper application; military convicts 
and prisoners of war. 

10. Religious Affairs: follows the social and religious wel- 
fare of naval personnel and makes recommendations for its 
constant improvement; provides for organized work among 
prisoners of war; etc. This section may also conduct investiga- 
tions along sociological lines as to conditions among civilian la- 
bor classes and report any conditions found that might be 
supposed to prejudice or prevent, in time of war, a proper 
flow of labor in mines or factories upon which the naval or 
military forces would depend for fuel, munitions, or other 

11. Transportation: has supervision over the investigation 
of all transportation facilities that are or might be available to 
the Navy, in peace or war; perfects arrangements for the 
ready employment of such means; submits estimates of 
amount and kinds of transport that are lacking; satisfies all le- 
gal requisitions for transportation; provides oversea transport 
for the Army; estimates for maintenance and operation of 

12. Pensions and Claims: investigates all claims for pensions 
and damages by reason of naval employment; submits recom- 
mendations as to their allowance; submits estimates of appro- 
priations that will be required to cover such allowed claims 
and pensions. 

13. Public Works: has jurisdiction over designing, con- 



strutting, and repairing buildings and docks and other public 
works at shore establishments; estimates for same. 

14. Subsistence: purchases and distributes food supplies for 
the naval personnel, or authorizes the purchase thereof ; esti- 
mates for same. 

The Chief or Director of each section recommends to the 
Chief of Staff in regard to the appointment, promotion, and 
duty assignments of the personnel of his own section and of 
the members of that specialty in the whole Logistical Staff 
Corps. He is also charged with the education and training of 
that personnel, except in the case of the Sanitation and Medi- 
cal Service (in which case the education is national, and not 
departmental); also keeps records of cost of administration of, 
and makes estimates for, his section. 

The next subordinate stage of control in the organization 
presents four classes of units: (1) Fleets, (2) Home Shore Es- 
tablishments, (3) Coast Defense Establishments, (4) Lines of 

A. The Fleet: The supreme authority in the Fleet is the 
Admiral. As a great tactical representative, he is subject to the 
central control of the Head of the Navy through the central 
General Staff; this control is exercised through the assignment 
of tasks and the expectation of results; the guiding principle 
should be that the Admiral will be subjected to centralized di- 
rection only so far as is necessary to secure his cooperation with 
other units; in other words, his orders from central control 
specify details only to the extent of prescribing what he must 
do to cooperate, which prescribed details would not be a nec- 
essary selection with a less specific order. His staff organiza- 
tion is a miniature of the central staffs and the staff members 
are units of organized staff corps. 

I. General Staff: Chief of Staff. 

1. Assistant for Personnel. 

2. Assistant for Operations. 

3. Assistant for External Affairs. 

Among these three will be distributed all the functions 
that belong to the General Staff, and each will correspond to 
one or more of the offices of the central General Staff. 


George C. Thorpe 

II. Logistical Staff: Each section will represent one or more 
sections of the central Logistical Staff and will be under the 
general control of the central logistical section having author- 
ity over the subject matter under consideration. Each section 
will be headed by an "Inspector." 

1. Mechanical Engineering. 

2. Ordnance. 

3. Construction. 

4. Finance and Supply. 

5. Sanitation and Medical Service. 

6. Advanced Base. 

7. Signal Service. 

8. Aerial Service. 

9. Legal Service: also represents Pensions and Claims. 

10. Religious Affairs. 

1 1. Transportation. 
14. Subsistence. 

B. Home Shore Establishments: Supreme authority 
vested in a Commandant, whose status is analogous to that of 
the Admiral in the Fleet. His staff organization: 

I. General Staff: Chief of Staff. 

1. Assistant for Personnel. 

2. Assistant for External Affairs (miscellaneous). 

II. Logistical Staff: general outline same as for Fleet, each 
chief of section being an "Inspector, 1 ' except add: 

13. Public Works. 

C. Coast Defense Establishments: Supreme authority 
vested in a Commandant, whose status is analogous to that of 
a Commandant of other Shore Establishments. Staff 

I. General Staff: Chief of Staff. 

1. Assistant for Personnel. 

2. Assistant for External Affairs (miscellaneous). 

II. Logistical Staff: "Inspectors" for: 

1. Mechanical Engineering (including electrical 

2. Ordnance. 

3. None. 



4. Finance and Supply; also represents the central sec- 
tions of Transportation and Subsistence. 

5. Sanitation and Medical Service. 

6. Advanced Based Establishment; to provide mobile 
supports for land defense. 

7. Signal Service. 

8. Aerial Service. 

9. Legal Service; also represents Pensions and Claims. 

10. Religious Affairs. 
13. Public Works. 

Where a Shore Establishment (Dockyard) and a Coast De- 
fense Establishment are at the same geographical location, 
there will be one Commandant for both, one General Staff, 
and one Logistical Staff so modified as to membership as to 
provide for all the functions of manufacture, repair, and 

D. Lines of Communication: The second stage in the line 
of control here is represented by the administration of bases 
and advanced bases, and the manner of their connection. The 
secondary units would be so varied, ranging from the com- 
mander of a supply train acting outside of the jurisdiction of 
any fleet, to the commandant of a base, that the organization 
would have to be adjusted at the time of its employment. The 
organization would, however, always follow the general rule of 
providing functionaries to represent such offices of the central 
General and Logistical Staffs as the nature of the duty 

The third stage is represented by the Division, subordi- 
nate to the Fleet, the supreme authority in which is the Rear 
Admiral, who has his General Staff and Logistical Staff, orga- 
nized like corresponding staffs of the Fleet, except the num- 
bers would be fewer and some of the staff offices would have 
to represent more than one staff office of the Fleet. 

The last stage is that of the Ship, the supreme authority 
of which is the Captain. The General Staff there would be 
represented by the Captain and his Adjutant. The Logistical 
Staff would consist of: 

1. Chief Engineer. 

2. Ordinance Officer. 


George C. Thorpe 

3. Construction. 

4. Finance and Supply Officer; also represents Trans- 
portation and Subsistence. 

5. Sanitation and Medical Officer. 

6. Advanced Base Officer (representing military 

7. Signal Officer. 

8. Aerial Officer. 

9 and 10. Chaplain; also representing the Legal Officer. 


VII. Army Organization 

As the purpose of this essay is to present in broad, general 
outline a scheme of organization, in the abstract, without 
any consideration as to its applicability to any particular fight- 
ing service, in order merely to show the relative position of 
Logistics in the Science of War, there is no pretense that the 
division of labor, or functions, within the respective provinces 
of the General Staff and Logistics, is accurate or complete. 

The thesis is that Logistics is a distinctive branch of war- 
fare, and that it embraces a large number of activities that 
should be coordinated, but not confused, with tactical or stra- 
tegical activities. 

A certain elaboration of details has been presented in dis- 
cussing naval organization, but only as an example of method 
and to inject a touch of causality and reality into a subject that, 
at best, is dry and impersonal. 

It seems undesirable, however, to pursue the elaboration 
through several pages dealing with Army organization, for the 
division of labor in that branch of the national service would 
follow the same lines as for the Navy, and would employ al- 
most identical terms of the organization of the Army depart- 
ments, the same relation to the National Board of Strategy, 
and the same lines of control down through armies and army 
divisions to the regiment. Such conception is justified by the 
weight of authority declaring that fundamental principles are 
the same in war on land and war on the sea. In fact, we have 
many examples of naval battles being merely a contest be- 
tween bodies of infantry on floating platforms instead of upon 
terra firma. The naval battle now is largely a contest between 
floating artilleries as on land it is becoming more and more a 
contest between mobile batteries; casualties among Army per- 
sonnel are reported as high as 70 per cent artillery-inflicted as 


George C. Thorpe 

against 15 per cent credited to small-arms; and of course dam- 
age to materiel is almost entirely credited to the ordnance. If 
the functions of the Army and Navy are so nearly identical, is 
it not reasonable to propose that the organization to effect the 
functioning should be made along the same lines? 

It is therefore deemed sufficient to present a general 
outline of organization to indicate the lines of control and the 
place of Logistics in the Army. 

Minister of War (Minister for the Army): political head of 
the Army; intermediary between the National Board of Strat- 
egy and General and Logistical Staffs; and between such staffs 
and the Head of the State and Legislative branch; has author- 
ity of disapproval and direction over any and all offices or 
functionaries of the Army. 

I. General Staff of the Army (members detailed from 
General Staff Corps): 

1 . Chief of Staff of the Army: organ of expression of Minis- 
ter of War to all subordinates in tactical matters and for the 
General Staff acting as a whole; presides over the General and 
Logistical Staffs when in assembled session; has general super- 
vision over the administration of the affairs of such staffs. 

2. Chief of Personnel: similar to like-named office in Navy 
General Staff. 

3. Chief of Staff College: presides over the academic staff of 
the Army Staff College, and otherwise performs functions 
similar to those prescribed for the like-named office of the 

4. Chief of Operations: functions similar to those prescribed 
for the like-named office in the Navy, substituting "armies" 
for "fleets" and "general officers" for "officers of flag rank"; 
but has no jurisdiction over coast defense establishments. 

5. Chief of Militia: same as similar naval chief. 

6. Chief of Communications: same as Navy. 

7. Chief of External Affairs: same as Navy. 

II. Logistical Staff of the Army: Directors of: 
1. Engineers: public works, field works, military map- 
making, pioneer work; etc. 



2. Ordnance and Artillery: similar to office of Ordnance 
in Logistical Staff of the Navy. 

3. Remount Division: functions in connection with provid- 
ing mounts for the Cavalry. 

4. Finance and Supply: same as Navy. 

5. Sanitation and Medical Service: same as Navy. 

6. Subsistence: same as Navy. 

7. Signal Service: same as Navy. 

8. Aerial Service: same as Navy. 

9. Legal Service: same as Navy. 

10. Religious Affairs: same as Navy. 

1 1. Transportation: provides land transportation. 

12. Pensions and Claims: same as Navy. 

13. Military Police. 

The next subordinate stage of control in Army organiza- 
tion presents three classes of units: (1) Armies in the field, 
(2) Permanent Military Posts, (3) Lines of Communication. 

Functions will be distributed to these on lines followed for 
the Navy, the equivalents being: 

"Armies in the field" for "Fleets"; 
"Military Posts" for "Home Shore Establishments"; 
"Lines of Communication" for "Lines of Commu- 

Outline of Organization for an Army in the Field: The 

supreme authority is in the General, whose position is similar 
to that of the Admiral in the Fleet. 

I. General Staff: Chief of Staff. 

1. Assistant for Personnel. 

2. Assistant for Operations. 

3. Assistant for External Affairs. 

II. Logistical Staff: Each section will represent one or more 
sections of the central Logistical Staff and will be headed by 
an "Inspector." 

1. Engineer: field works, military map-making, pioneer 
work, etc. 

2. Ordnance and Artillery. 

3. Remounts. 


George C. Thorpe 

4. Finance and Supply. 

5. Sanitation and Medical Service. 

6. Subsistence. 

7. Signal Service. 

8. Aerial Service. 

9. Legal Service: includes Pensions and Claims. 

10. Religious Affairs. 

1 1. Transportation. 
13. Military Police. 

The Corps may be regarded as a tactical unit, analogous 
to the Navy's Squadron, and not an administrative unit, unless 
acting alone, when it becomes a field army. 

The next subordinate administrative unit would be the 
Army Division, the supreme authority in which is the Major- 
Ceneral. Like the Navy Division, its organization would be a 
miniature of the next higher organization, but with fewer 
functionaries, some staff officers, in the Logistical Staff, repre- 
senting more than one section. 

The last stage to be considered is the Regiment, the su- 
preme authority of which is the Colonel. The General Staff is 
represented by the Regimental adjutant, who also exercises 
the logistical function of the section of the military police in 
connection with the employment of his regiment. 

The regimental Logistical Staff consists of: 

4. Finance and Supply; also represents (6) Subsistence 
and (11) Transportation. 

5. Sanitation and Medical Service. 
7. Signal Service. 

10. Religious Affairs; also represents the Legal 

While in the Navy the ship is the smallest administrative 
unit, the Army's company is the smallest. But as the Captain 
of the Company perfoms all the functions of directing admin- 
istration, and needs no assistance therefor, there is no call for 
a consideration of this unit. 

Before leaving the discussion of Army organization, it 
must be said, with emphasis, that there is no pretension herein 
to present anything more than general principles of organiza- 
tion; hence it is not open to challenge for omission of details. 


VIII. The Fighting Machine 

It is important to realize that the Army and Navy as a unit is 
a fighting machine. 

When any other kind of machine is constructed, it is in 
view of a distinct use. If that use is not contemplated, the ma- 
chine is not made. The need of the machine is first apparent 
and the machine is an answer to the need. 

Is the fighting machine different in this respect? 

If there is any need of the fighting machine, it is to en- 
force the State's policies. If a State can not enforce its policies, 
it can not maintain its sovereignty. But we constantly see great 
States' policies opposed. Diplomatic negotiation is full of ex- 
pressed, tacit, or veiled threats. Opposition to States' policies is 
successful unless threats of resistance to such opposition are 
based on power. A machine is an organization of powers for 
application to a specific purpose. The fighting machine is an 
organization of powers to resist opposition to a State's policies. 
The need of the fighting machine is apparent, then, if we as- 
sume that the State is determined to maintain its sovereignty. 

Having determined that there is need for a machine, our 
next inquiry is as to the nature of the machine, because there 
are different kinds of machines. 

The leading characteristic of some machines is that they 
are designed to function actively, to do a positive work; such 
as the mower to cut grass or weeds. Others are designed to 
prevent, or modify, the working of forces; such as the dam to 
obstruct the flood. 

The dam may be employed to accomplish two tasks: by 
obstructing the flow of water in one direction to protect ad- 
joining property; by interposing a water-wheel at the spillway 
to generate power. Some dams are designed for the primary 
purpose of protecting adjoining property against Hoods, the 


George C. Thorpe 

generation of power being only incidental; other dams are de- 
signed for the primary purpose of generating power, and pos- 
sibly, incidentally, to protect property. 

The fighting machine may be employed like the dam — as 
a protection; thus conceived, it is an organization of forces to 
resist forces; like the dam, it may interpose active mechanisms 
(as the spillway's water-wheel) to do positive work in support 
of the static function. This is the fighting machine on the de- 
fensive. But it also may be conceived of as in the mower 
class — operating positively, say, to mow the field of weeds of 
opposition. This is the fighting machine on the offensive. 

Between these two great classes of fighting machines, we 
have to choose the one that will do the particular work in 
hand. If State policies are threatened by a flood that will be 
stemmed by a dam, the dam is the machine desired. If the 
threat is in the shape of a rapidly growing army in the enemy's 
fields that we can mow down there before the virulent growth 
reaches our own fields, we must send out our mowers. 

Sometimes a man with fair fields is threatened by a flood 
from one side and by a growth of weeds in a neighbor's field 
on the other side. He must then employ both the dam and the 
mower. So a nation to protect its State may find it neccessary 
to mow a neighbor's field on its southern boundary, but only 
necessary to dam its northern frontier. 

Merely deciding upon the nature of the machine does not 
determine the design of its construction. 

The engineer, to design a dam, must gather data as to 
meteorological conditions, the nature of the terrain, the 
strength of concrete, etc. His design will not provide for a 
dam to resist a minimum rainfall, but his calculations will be 
based upon the greatest volume of water that reasonably could 
be expected to gather against the dam, in view of past experi- 
ences and known conditions — with a liberal margin of safety 

The modern husbandman does not contemplate em- 
ploying the scythe for any considerable mowing or reaping 
job; if he did, he would be lost in the competitive struggle. 

The fighting machine, whether it be intended for offen- 
sive or defensive use, or both, must be strong enough to take 
the work that calculations show reasonably may be expected to 



accumulate. As the dam is worthless if any section of it is not 
strong enough to hold, the fighting machine, in a defensive 
strategy (if the analogy between the dam and fighting ma- 
chine is true), fails if it is not strong at every point. A defen- 
sive strategy is highly hazardous for that reason; if it fails at 
any point, it lets in the destructive flood, whereas the offen- 
sive strategy failing at a single point is not irreparable. 

The point is, so far as Logistics is concerned, that the 
fighting machine must be constructed as a unit adapted, in 
kind and strength, to meet such tasks as may be imposed. The 
logistican is interested in the design of the whole machine, be- 
cause a large part of the preparation is in the field of Logis- 
tics. The qualitative and quantitative analysis of the logistical 
task must be based on the nature and extent of the task of the 
whole unit. The logistical task will be different in a defensive 
national strategy from what it would be for an offensive 


IX. Peace-Time Logistics 

Whether a nation's strategy be offensive or defensive, 
there are certain logistical functions, not always obvious, 
that should be active at all times. 

The most important of these operates largely in estimates 
of the non-combatant factor. 

In times of peace the organization must be assured that, 
during the high tension of war, there will be an even flow of 
supplies of all kinds used by fighting machines. In other 
words, there must be an assurance that the supply factories 
will not only run smoothly, but that they will be able to "speed 
up" to a greatly increased production, without breaking under 
the stress. (It is said that the supply needs of the German 
Army, particularly as to ammunition, have been many times 
greater than the amounts computed, in peace times, as the 
probable requisites for war conditions. 

In factories under government control, as well as in those 
under private control, the personnel must be willing workers: 
they must be indoctrinated with a strong desire for the success 
of our combatant forces; that is to say, they must be real 
patriots — as ready to give their lives to the task of making mu- 
nitions or shoes as are the combatants to give theirs on the 
field of battle; they must also be efficient workers. 

Let us suppose opposite conditions as existing: that there 
is a large element among the non-combatant workers in facto- 
ries and mines that is ignorant, inefficient, dissatisfied with 
their lot as workers; that even under normal conditions of 
peace times strikes in these industries are frequent. Is it rea- 
sonable to expect that these ignorant, unhappy people, who 
think they have little reason to love the social order in which 
they live, will suddenly, at the outbreak of war creating abnor- 
mal and more difficult conditions, be transformed into intelli- 



gent, efficient, self-sacrificing individuals, willing to put forth 
maximum effort in the great cooperation? 

Suppose a nation's fleet, operating to block an invading 
fleet, is suddenly deprived of its coal supply by reason of a 
strike of unionized coal miners! 

Suppose the laborers in one large munition plant should 
strike when the Army and Navy need every shell they can get! 

Without naming many such suppositions, it is quite ap- 
parent that a fighting machine that is to hold the line must 
have the cooperation, and efficient cooperation, of the labor- 
ing man. 

Therefore, preparation for war is not complete until the 
laboring man is prepared for war. It is one of the functions of 
the fighting organization to enquire into the labor problems of 
the nation. Of course, these enquiries should begin at the 
mines and factories that are most immediately connected with 
the military and naval supply. But, it may be asked, what shall 
we enquire about? And, assuming that we find unsatisfactory 
conditions, how can the logistical officer remedy them, say, in 
case the employer is a private corporation or individual? 

Of course this problem, like most others that are worth 
solving, has its difficulties: the laborers' demands may be quite 
unreasonable, on the one hand; the employer may be wanting 
too much for his money, on the other hand; the laborers may 
be ignorant, the employer too eager, etc. 

But let us say that there is an office in a National Logis- 
tical Staff charged with the duty of preparing the labor situa- 
tion for war. Armed with his commission he goes to the 
different factories and mines, and consults with those in con- 
trol who must recognize the authority of their national cus- 
tomer's agent. An investigation, by the government's officer, 
of the labor conditions at that factory, should result in show- 
ing what, if anything, is lacking to insure the reliability of that 
factory in time of war. The officer should ally himself closely 
with the labor organizations, and as a neutral, honest, and im- 
partial go-between be able to exercise a controlling influence 
in all cases of important disagreement between employer and 
employees. He should also be able to inject into the social life 
of the laboring men certain doctrines of loyalty to the govern- 
ment as well as doctrines of social reasonableness, so that the 


George C. Thorpe 

laborer, in the great crisis of war. would be in the right frame 
of mind to serve his country. 

A government official accomplishing a great social work 
in improving a wide range of conditions among the laboring 
men should be able to wield great influence among them. So- 
called social work would thus be under governmental direc- 
tion; it would thus be standardized, and so accomplish much 
more actual improvement than is now accomplished in most 
countries through spasmodic, disorganized, unscientific ef- 
forts along these lines. Efforts to "improve" the condition of 
the laboring man are now often in the hands of irresponsible 
and misguided persons. Whether the government is good or 
bad, the people of every class living under that government 
owe it to themselves to be loyal to it, as a child owes loyalty to 
his strong or weak father. If the government is bad, the loyalty 
of all the people will result in reforming it; disloyalty will have 
the opposite effect. It is only necessary to convince the labor- 
ing man of this fact to cement his loyalty. The government's 
sociological officer can accomplish much through off-hour 
schools, and, possibly, quite as much through seeing that the 
proper indoctrination is introduced into the public schools for 
the child has great educational power in the home, since he is 
the instructor that is loved, and sympathy between instructor 
and instructed is an essential in educational methods. The la- 
boring man would thus be educated in loyalty to the govern- 
ment, as well as in reasonableness in his demands upon his 

On the other hand, employers must be made to do their 
share in perfecting the cooperation by a readiness to respond 
to reasonable demands. Probably employers would need some 
education as to indoctrination of loyalty, as well as the employ- 
ees. Legislation can enforce a reasonable regime even in pri- 
vate industrial enterprises. Our government official's 
recommendations, based on knowledge of conditions at the 
various plants, should be of prime importance in assisting the 
legislators in shaping this class of legislation. 

The regulation of relations between employer and em- 
ployees in private munitions plants was regulated in England 
by the Ministry of Munitions Act, 1915, and the Munitions of 
War Bill. 


X. Factory Preparedness 

Without analyzing the task of each department of the Lo- 
gistical Staff, as we have just done for one department, 
it may be stated generally that each logistical officer should 
survey his task from end to end, with the broadest view and in 
the greatest detail, for the purpose of accomplishing the most 
intensive development in order to produce the maximum 
product. And he should organize his forces for war, not alone 
for peace. It sometimes seems as though fighting machines 
provide for almost everything except war. 

A department that has to do with manufacturing, for in- 
stance, should provide not only for peace consumption, but 
for the maximum production that may be required for war. 
All machines and tools that will be required for manufactur- 
ing purposes in war-time should be built or made in peace- 
time. Arrangements should be made with private factories 
that will be expected to manufacture munitions, in war-time, 
whereby such factories will anticipate requirements by having 
on hand all necessary machinery, or the specifications and 
means for quickly providing it, for the special and additional 
manufacturing. They should be provided with blueprints and 
full specifications, and with gauges for testing the products, to 
see that they meet requirements. All these details should be 
worked out during peace times so that, when war comes, it will 
be necessary to give only a brief order to start the process go- 
ing. Provision for mobilizing raw materials should also be 
made and peace-time legislation should prescribe what must 
be done in this regard upon a declaration of war. A Commis- 
sion should be provided for, with authority to compel produc- 
ers to honor requisitions for raw materials and to fix the 
prices to be charged therefor. This was accomplished by the 
"Raw Stuff Bureau" of the War Department in Germany dur- 


George C. Thorpe 

ing the present European War. 

Another function of any department charged with the 
manufacture of a war product is to obtain information as to 
the most modern improvements and inventions that have be- 
come known, so that his product may be the best that can be 
turned out for the purpose intended. To this end, producing 
officers must be familiar with the nature of their use and be 
alert to discover wherein they may be improved. 

As modern wars are to so great an extent competitions in 
mobilization of the contending nations' resources, it would 
seem that the belligerent will win who makes the more eco- 
nomical effort — who gains the maximum result out of a given 
expenditure of effort or means, who selects the most economi- 
cal weapon — i.e., the weapon that will, for a given cost, accom- 
plish the greatest destruction of enemy war resources, etc. It is 
said, in reference to the present European War, that the last 
100,000 reserves and the last million pounds of credit will win. 

Where the contest is drawn so closely between well- 
organized nations in arms, it is of the utmost importance that 
economy be exercised in every department of the fighting 

In this connection, it is interesting to note that the unit 
cost per soldier for some armies is from 12 to 16 times greater 
than for the unit cost of the Germany Army, from 17 to 20 
times as great as the unit cost in the Japanese Army, and from 
18 to 23 times as great as for the Swiss Army. The difference 
in pay of personnel contributes only in a small degree to the 
total differences. The explanation lies in economical 
administration — the elimination of waste. It may be said also 
that the efficiency that results in economy will produce excel- 
lence in other respects. 

Each department of Logistics must select and administer 
on the basis of economy. 

The various departments sitting in conference will be able 
to compare their needs and divide between them the tasks of 
satisfying such needs, in order to avoid duplication. For exam- 
ple, if one department requires certain machines for manufac- 
turing, and another department may use some or all of the 
same kind of machines, a consolidation should effect a great 
saving. Or, if the Sanitation and Medical Department requires 



transportation for ambulances, it would seem that its needs 
could be best satisfied by the Transportation Department. 

Thus throughout the whole list of activities consolidation 
and the elimination of waste should be effected. 


XI. Logistical Problem 

Students of warfare should not be content with studying 
Strategy and Tactics in the abstract and concrete. The 
mere fact that a measure may be correctly founded on strateg- 
ical or tactical principles is not conclusive that such measure is 
acceptable or that it may be adopted. War games and chart 
maneuvers are well enough as far as they go, but they do not 
provide the necessary logistical instruction. 

In planning the employment of any particular military 
force, it is not only necessary to decide what is desirable, but 
what is possible. Therefore every strategical and every tactical 
problem should be solved logistically to determine what meas- 
ures logistical resources will afford. 

The reader is invited to imagine himself as a student at a 
staff college and to suppose that his instructor has assigned a 
problem constructed along the following lines: 


The political situation indicates probability that Blue and 
Red countries will be at war within a month. 

Geographically, Blue is west of Red; the two countries are 
separated by an ocean about 5,000 miles in width, as meas- 
ured from X (Blue's principal eastern continental base) and T 
(Red's most western base). Blue has an advanced base (Island 
Z) about 3,000 miles east of X; it is believed to be in a state of 
self-defense that could be sustained about two weeks against 
any attack that Red could throw against it. 

The situation was long previously estimated by Blue's Na- 
tional Board of Strategy, which had adopted, to meet the situ- 
ation, "Plan A," which is familiar to the General and Logistical 
Staffs of the Navy and War Departments. 



In turn the two departments have adopted tactical "Plan 
B," also well understood by said staffs, to meet the require- 
ments of strategic: "Plan A." 

Red could not expect to advance west of Advanced Base Z 
unless or until it had been taken from Blue, as Red can not af- 
ford to have its line of communications thus threatened. 

Strategic "Plan A" and tactical "Plan B" contemplate the 
employment of Blue naval forces to try conclusions with the 
Red Fleet probably campaigning, or to campaign, to oust Blue 
from Z, and Blue military forces to be concentrated at stra- 
tegic points on the Blue coast. 

The Blue Fleet consists of 20 dreadnoughts, 20 pre- 
dreadnoughts, 10 battle-cruisers, 30 scouts, 60 torpedo-boat 
destroyers, 40 submarines, 120 hydroplanes, and such Train 
as Logistics demands, as deduced in the solution of this 

To make the problem as simple as possible, we will prem- 
ise that the naval force will steam from X to Advanced Base Z 
at 10 knots per hour, except the battle-cruisers and scouts, 
which must do 20 knots (as far as reckoning fuel-consumption 
is material); the Fleet will rest at Advanced Base Z three days, 
after which half the scouts and half the battle-cruisers will be 
on scouting duty for ten days at an average speed of 20 knots; 
the whole Fleet will then operate for ten days at 20 knots by 
day and 10 knots by night, the battle-cruisers, scouts, and de- 
stroyers carrying steam for 30 knots; the Train will remain at 
Z seven days after the return of the Fleet from the said ten 
days' operations, during which time the fuel-ships must refuel 
all ships, except gasoline-users, and have sufficient fuel to 
carry them back to X. 

It will be assumed that the Fleet will consume fuel as 


I OK 20K 25 K 30K In 


Dreadnoughts, oil, tons 3 .7 20 

Pre-d read noughts, coal, 

tons 4 1.0 20 



1.2 3.0 



.9 1.3 



.15 .25 


George C. Thorpe 

Battle-cruisers, coal, tons . . .4 

Scouts, coal, tons 3 

Destroyers, oil, tons 08 

Submarines, gasoline; not to 

be computed. 
Hydroplanes, gasoline; not 
to be computed. 

Repair-ships, coal, tons 12 20 

Ammunition-ships, coal, 

tons 12 12 

Hospital-ships, coal, tons .. .12 12 

Ambulance-ships, coal, tons .12 12 

Colliers, 10,000-ton, coal, 

tons 17 12 

Colliers, 7,500-ton, coal, 

tons 12 10 

Colliers, 5,000-ton, coal, 

tons 09 8 

Tankers, 7,500-ton, oil, .09 8 


Tankers, 5,000-ton, oil, 

tons 06 6 

Tankers, 2,500-ton, oil, ton . .03 3 

Refrigerator-ships, coal, 

tons 12 12 

Supply-ships, coal, tons 12 10 

(NOTE: Figures in first four columns represent amounts 
consumed per knot; last column, per day.) 

Required in solution of problem: (1) General scheme of 
activities of the Logistical Staff of the Fleet; (2) composition of 
Fleet Train; (3) amount of fuel required; (4) quantities and 
kinds of rations to provide for three months (92 days) after 
arrival at Z. Assume that Blue will have no naval vessels avail- 
able to act as escorts for carrying vessels after the departure of 
the Fleet from X. 


To comply with the special requirements of this problem: 



(1) General scheme of activities of Logistical Staff of the 
Fleet: taking the Logistical Staff presented in Chapter VI., we 

1. Mechanical Engineering: (a) informs Transportation 
Department of number of repair-ships that will be included in 
Train; (b) computes amount of fuel that will be required. 

2. Ordnance: informs Transportation that 5 ammunition- 
ships will be required. 

3. Construction: special requirements of problem call for 
nothing, as Advanced Base Z is assumed to be a complete ad- 
vanced naval base with provision for docking and repairing 

4. Finance and Supply: informs Transportation that 5 
supply-ships will be added to Train. 

5. Sanitation and Medical Service: Advanced Base Z is as- 
sumed to have Shore Hospital facilities, but as the special re- 
quirements of the problem include composition of the Train, 
this department must estimate the number of hospital-ships 
and ambulance-ships that must accompany the Fleet. The ap- 
proximate personnel composition of the Fleet will be: 

20 dreadnoughts 20,000 

20 pre-dreadnoughts 16,000 

10 battle-cruisers 9,000 

30 scouts ,. . 9,000 

60 destroyers 6,000 

40 submarines 1 ,000 

120 hydroplanes 720 

Total 61,720 

Assuming 20 per cent casualties, sickness and wounds and 
deaths, gives 12,344 casualties; assuming 20 per cent of these 
die, there are 9,258 remaining to be cared for; probably 10 
per cent of these will be permanent inef fectives, or 925, who 
should be returned home, so as not to be a drain on resources 
at the front; for this purpose four ambulance-ships should be 
provided; returning empty colliers or supply-ships can not be 
used for this purpose, because the invalids could not then be 
protected by the Red Cross flag. For the 8,333 invalids for 


George C. Thorpe 

whom hospital attendance must be provided at the front, 50 
per cent can be cared for in the fighting ships' "sick-bays"; 
that will leave some 4,000; as they will not all be invalided 
cases at the same time, and as there are presumably extensive 
hospital facilities at the Advanced Base, it would seem safe to 
sav that six hospital-ships, each with capacity for 350 patients, 
would provide for any conditions that might be expected 
within reason. Therefore, this department notifies Transpor- 
tation that ten ships must be added to the Train for Sanitation 
and Medical Service. A similar, but more detailed, notice must 
be sent to Mechanical Engineering for fuel computation, and 
to Subsistence for ration computation. 

6. Advanced Base: special requirements of problem call 
for nothing under this head, as Advanced Base Z is supposed 
to be complete. 

7. Signal Service: nothing special. 

8. Aerial Service: nothing special. 

9. Legal Service: nothing special. 

10. Religious Affairs: nothing special. 

1 1. Transportation: must make up Train in accordance 
with calculations that will follow below. 

14. Subsistence: must compute approximate number of 
rations and components thereof according to data that will 
follow 7 below. 

(2) As to complving, now, with the second, third, and 
fourth requirements of the problem, it is evident that Mechan- 
ical Engineering Department will not be able to compute the 
aggregate amount of fuel that will be required until the full 
composition of the Train is determined; the Subsistence De- 
partment will not be able to compute the whole number of ra- 
tions until it is known how many rations must be provided for 
the Train: Transportation Department, on the other hand, 
will not be able to state the composition of the Train until the 
requirements of other departments are reported. At the very 
beginning of the problem we are struck with the importance 
of there being a Logistical Staff, of which the members work 
in official coordination and constant consultation. 

The 1st, 5th, and 14th offices of the Staff may make ten- 
tative, or preliminary, estimates, and the estimates may be 



made complete after conference with the 1 1th office. 
Mechanical Engineering's first estimate: 

(a) Repair-ships: 1 for hydroplanes, 1 for submarines, 1 
for destroyers, and 4 for remainder of Fleet, should he suffi- 
cient in addition to the repair facilities afforded by the com- 
plete Advanced Base at Z. 

(b) Fuel for the combatant vessels of the Fleet plus the 7 
repair, 5 ammuniton, 5 supply, and to 10 hospital and ambu- 
lance vessels: 

(1) Steaming from X to Z; 3,000 miles, speed 10 knots: 

Oil Coal 

20 dreadnoughts 3 x30()()x2() 18,000 

20 pre-dreadnoughts ... .4 x3000x20 .... 24,000 

1 battle-cruisers 8 x3000x 10 .... 24,000 

30 scouts 5 x2000x30 .... 45,000 

60 destroyers 08x3000x60 14,400 

(2) At Advanced Base Z three days: 

30 vessels at 20 tons coal per day, 

30x20x3 .... 1,800 

20 vessels at 20 tons oil per day, 

20x20x3 1,200 

30 vessels at 10 tons coal per day, 

30x10x3 .... 900 

60 vessels at 4 tons oil per day, 

60x4x3 720 

(3) Next ten days: half scouts and battle-cruisers scout- 
ing, remainder Fleet in port: 

5 battle-cruisers, scouting at 20 knots, 

.8x20x24x10x5 .... 19,200 

5 battle-cruisers, in port, 20x10x5 ... 1,000 

1 5 scouts, scouting .5x20x24x 1 Ox 1 5 . 36,000 

15 scouts, in port, 10x10x15 1,500 

20 dreadnoughts, in port, 

20x10x20 . .... 4,000 

20 pre-dreadnoughts, in port, 

20x10x20 .... 4,000 

60 destroyers, in port, 4x 1 0x60 2,400 


George C. Thorpe 

(4) Fleet operating ten days: 

20 dreadnoughts: 

.7 x 120 k. x 12 hrs. x 20 x 10 
.3 x 10 k. x 12 hrs. x 20 x 10 

20 pre-dreadnoughts: 

1 x 20 k, x 12 hrs. x 20 x 10 
.4 x 10 k. x 12 hrs. x 20 x 10 

10 battle-cruisers: 

1.2 x 20 k. x 12 hrs. x 10 x 10 
1 x 10 k. x 12 hrs. x 10 x 10.... 

30 scouts: 

.9 x 20 k. x 12 hrs. x 30 x 10 
.5 x 10 k. x 12 hrs. x 30 x 10 







(5) Repair-ships: 

.12 x 3000 x 7 (en route). . 
20 x 30 (days in port) x 7 

(6) Ammunition-ships: 


.12 x 3000 x 5 (en route) 
12 x 30 x 5 (in port) . . . 

(7) Supply-ships: 


.12 x 3000 x 5 (en route) 


(8) Hospital- and ambulance-ships: 

.12 x 3000 x 10 .... 3,600 

12 x 30 x 10 .... 3,600 

Total fuel, in tons, required 

for the foregoing parts of 

the Fleet and Train 81,520 359,720 

Subsistence, tentative estimate: 
As shown above, in consid- 
ering Sanitary and Medical 
Services' estimates, there 



will be in combatant 

vessels 61,720 

Add for: 7 repair-ships at 

160 U120 

5 ammunition-ships at 

138 690 

5 supply-ships at 

138 690 

10 hospital- and 
ambulance-ships at 160, 1,600 

Total, 65,820 

Providing for three months, say 92 days, we 
Ivave: 65,820 x 92 = 6,055,440 rations. 
We will not determine the components of the ration until 
the total number of rations has been ascertained, after deter- 
mining the composition of the Train. We will now only seek 
an estimate of the number of refrigerator- and subsistence- 
ships that will be required. Allowing a pound of fresh meat 
and .43 pound tinned meats as the ration per man, and 
adding 9 per cent for losses, there would have to be refrigera- 
tion for 6,420,429 pounds of meats. Allowing about 3.9 
pounds to each ration for the components other than fresh 
meats, and adding 9 per cent for losses, we would require 
transportation for 25,741,675 pounds. Twelve refrigerator- 
ships with refrigeration for 535,000 pounds of meats and for 
stowage of 2,000,000 pounds of other stores, each, would be 
nearly sufficient carriage for all the Fleet and Train except the 
colliers and these provision-carriers. The colliers must be ex- 
pected to carry their own rations, except as to fresh meats; 
they will be in position to get fresh meats from the 
refrigerator-ships only while at the Advanced Base (about 30 
days). Assuming that there will be about 55 colliers and tank- 
ers with crews of about 50 men, they would take only 55 x 50 
x 30 x 1 S A fresh meat, or 144,375 pounds. The twelve refrig- 
erator-ships, with crews of about 138 men and officers, would 
require 152,352 rations, or about that many pounds of fresh 
meats and about 600,000 pounds of other provisions. A thir- 
teenth refrigerator-ship will therefore be required, and it will 
provide for the personnel at Z. 


George C. Thorpe 

The fuel required for refrigerator-ships will be: 

From X to Z: .12 x 3000 x 13 4,680 

In port: 12 x 30 x 13 4,680 

Total, 9,360 

Add this sum to the amount of fuel previously estimated, 
and we have 81,520 tons of oil and 369,080 tons of coal that 
the fuel-ships must deliver, in addition to the quantities they 
will need for their own bunkers. 

Colliers usually have bunker capacity equal to about 10 
per cent of their cargo capacity. Each collier will use 720 tons 
of coal, which amount we must deduct from the cargo capacity 
plus bunker capacity to obtain the net delivery. Assuming that 
colliers of 10,000, 7,500, and 5,000 tons cargo capacity are 
available in the proportion of 1, 4, and 10, our Train would 
require the following numbers of colliers: 

4 at 10,000 cargo + 2,000 bunker -720 used = 45,120 

16 at 7.500 cargo + 750 bunker -720 used = 120,480 

43 at 5,000 cargo + 500 bunker -720 used = 205,540 


63 Total delivery, 371,140 

Assuming that tankers of 7,500, 5,000, and 2,500 tons 
cargo capacity and 10 per cent additional bunker capacity as 
oil-burners are available in the proportion of 1, 4, and 8, and 
that each tanker will burn 480 tons of oil, the Train will be in- 
creased by the following tankers: 

2 at 7,500 cargo (+ 750 bunker - 480 used) = 15,540 

7 at 5.000 cargo (+ 500 bunker - 480 used) = 35,140 

U at 2,500 cargo ( + 250 bunker - 480 used) = 31,780 

23 Total delivery, 82,460 

The Train can now be made up, and will be as follows: 

7 repair-ships, 

5 ammunition-ships, 

5 supply-ships (for general supplies), 















With the total number of ships thus determined, Subsist- 
ence Department has sufficient data upon which to base calcu- 
lations as to exact quantities and components of rations to be 

Combat. -;nt vessels (see above) . 61,720 

13 vessels at 160 2,720 

10 vessels at 138 1,380 

23 tankers at 40 (30 days' fresh 

meats only) . . . 920 

63 colliers at 50 (30 days' fresh 

meats only) ^_^^_i 3,150 

92 days' rations for 65,820 

Additional fresh meats for 

30 days for 4,070 

Rations for these would be made up as follows, the quan- 
tities providing 9 per cent additional to cover losses of stores: 

Dry Fresh 

Components Pounds Pounds 

Tea . 42,125 

Coffee 559,470 

Cocoa 98,730 

Sugar 1,645,500 

Biscuit 987,300 

Flour 5,997,518 

Cornmeal 296,190 

Lard 419,932 

Beef, fresh ... 3,685,920 

Beef, fresh (Train, additional) . ... 74,32 1 

Mutton, fresh ... 346,2 1 3 

Mutton fresh (Train, 

additional) ... 6,981 

Pork loins, fresh ... 1 ,267,693 


George C. Thorpe 

Dry Fresh 

Pork loins, fresh (Train, Pounds Pounds 

additional) ... 25,561 

Veal, fresh ... 346,213 

Veal, fresh (Train, additional) . ... 6,981 

Chicken, fresh ... 230,370 

Chicken, fresh (Train, 

additional) ... 4,645 

Pork sausage, fresh ... 346,2 1 3 

Pork sausage, fresh (Train, 

additional) ... 6,981 

Bacon, tinned 526,560 

Corned beef, tinned 526,560 

Hani, tinned 131 ,640 

Salmon, tinned 263,280 

Hani, smoked 1,151 .850 

Pork, salt 576.583 

Bologna, fresh ... 82,933 

Bologna, fresh (Train, 

additional) ... 1,672 

Frankfurters ... 164,550 

Frankfurters (Train, 

additional) ... 3,318 

Vegetables, fresh 6,566,203 

Tomatoes, tinned 828,016 

Beans, dry, 50.023 gals., weight 

approx .. 400,000 

Milk, tinned 412,033 

Pickles 235,636 

Vinegar, pints 329,100 

Oil, pints 140,635 

Butter, tinned 822,750 

Cheese 235,636 

Sirup, pints 235,636 

Rice 82,933 

Corn, tinned 346,213 

Peas, tinned 197,460 

String beans, tinned 148,753 

Lima beans, tinned 98,730 

Oatmeal 65,820 

Cornstarch 17,113 

Peaches, tinned 27 1 , 1 78 

Pears, tinned 22 1 , 1 55 

Apricots, tinned 73,718 







Prunes, tinned 123,742 

Apples, dried 98,730 

Peaches, dried 61 ,87 1 

Raisins, dried 25,695 

Salt 235,636 

Macaroni . . . 235,636 

Baking power 14,480 

Pepper 28,960 

Spices 7,898 

Hops 52,656 

Lemon extract, 658 gals., 

weight approx 5,264 

Vanilla extract, 2,632 gals., 21,056 

weight approx 

Mustard 28,960 _ 

Total weight, except fresh 

meats 25,890,540 

Total weight for 

refrigeration ... 6,600,565 

As these totals are less than the estimates made above in 
determining the number of refrigerator-ships that would be 
required, there will be space in those ships for additional pro- 
visions for the Train and for the Advanced Base. 

This solution has only superficially considered a small 
part of the logistical activities that would be required in 
organizing for an expedition a comparatively short distance 
from the home base and for a short campaign, but it suggests 
the enormous proportions of the logistical task for a more se- 
rious enterprise. 




Thus far we have dealt only with that part of organization 
which has to do with classification of functions. The or- 
ganization is of no practical value unless every part will so 
function that the whole machine will run smoothly; i. e., there 
must be assurance that the functionaries are fitted and ready 
to respond to any requirements that may be imposed. 

A consideration of pure Logistics can not be complete, 
then, without some reference to a theory of preparing the 
parts of the organization for efficient operation. Efficiency of 
the parts is required. 

Efficiency may be said to be the power that accomplishes 
a designed work; as the state of possessing adequate knowl- 
edge for the performance of a duty; as the ratio of effect pro- 
duced to the energy expended in producing it. The 
outstanding essentials appear to be: power and knowledge as 
subjective; task as objective. The subjective conditions must be 
proportioned to the objective requirements; that is to say, the 
quantity and quality of power and knowledge to be possessed 
by functionaires in the military machine must be measured 
and provided to meet the requirements of the task. It is really 
the estimate of the task, then, that should determine the meas- 
ure of efficiency that must be conditioned. 

Minor tasks allotted to the hosts of the fighting machine 
are widely varied, but the major task is the same for all. So, 
while qualifications for minor tasks require specialization, fun- 
damental qualifications are uniform. To illustrate: the cap- 
tain's specialty is that of control through the exercise of 
command: the gunner's specialty has to do with the manipula- 
tion of guns; neither the captain nor the gunner is expected to 
be qualified for the other's specialty. The great task for both is 
to defeat the enemy. This may be thought to be a statement of 


George C. Thorpe 

the task in so general terms as to fail to sufficiently suggest 
requisite qualifications, but this is not so; for, as a practical 
proposition, if every unit of the fighting machine is not im- 
bued with a strong impulse to win, the battle may be lost 
through the defection of one man, and if every unit is imbued 
with an intense desire to conquer the enemy, the battle is al- 
ready almost won. The individual qualities that support the 
winning impulse are: will, resolution, application, prolonged 
attention, perseverance, clear conceptions of end and pur- 
pose, and physical and moral courage. These qualities largely 
satisfy the element of power in efficiency; they constitute the 
impulse to action, while the guide to action is in the knowledge 
element of efficiency. This knowledge qualification is of two 
classes: specialization, already mentioned, and fundamental 
knowledge, or an understanding of the laws of Nature, which 
must be common to every element of the machine. 

While it can not be said that it is as essential for the lowest 
subordinate to be "efficient" as for the commander, since the 
results of the latter's inefficiency will be more widely distrib- 
uted, there may be occasions when the stupidity of the lowest 
subordinate may lose a battle upon which the fate of an em- 
pire hangs. 

It is said that the great Frederick's infantrymen were kept 
in line through fear of the sergeant who walked behind with a 
stick, and that as between the enemy in front and the cat-o'- 
nine-tails in rear, the soldier chose to brave the former. But 
that was in the day of small armies of compact masses, when 
wars were not the terrifically energetic and scientific affairs 
that they are today. Forty-five years ago the analytical Ger- 
mans realized that — 

With the intensity of fire attained by modern arma- 
ments (in 1870) the combat and tactical formations have 
become correspondingly loose. How is one, with this 
looseness, to control scattered bodies of men, so as to 
maintain their cohesion, keep their direction, and force 
them up to the shock? 

This means that, with modern wide deployments, the in- 
dividual infantryman must be qualified to act with intelligence 



so that he can be relied upon to properly act in the initiative 
and cooperate with his flanks. 

With the ship in action we find a similar condition. The 
captain can not be everywhere in his ship, nor the officer 
everywhere in his turret, at the same moment. In the over- 
whelming confusion of battle each man must be able to re- 
spond instantly to extraordinary situations. Really high intelli- 
gence may be demanded of the lowest unit, say, in case of 
accident in the engine- or boiler-rooms, or in case of the oc- 
currence of the unforeseen in the ammunition magazine. The 
"man on the spot" can not justly be blamed when his initiative 
is stupid if he does not understand the relation of cause and 
effect in a wide range of phenomena. 

With this view of the necessity for efficiency, we are next 
concerned with the means of attaining efficiency, which means 
is usually asserted to be training. What, then, is training? 

A dictionary definition runs thus: "Systematic instruction 
and drill, as in some trade, art, or profession; methodical tui- 
tion of mind or body; course of education." Education is de- 
fined as "the systematic development and cultivation of the 
normal powers of intellect, feeling, and conduct, so as to 
render them efficient in some particular form of living, or for 
life in general." To educate is to "develop the normal faculties 
by systematic training, instruction, and discpline." 5b 

Training has special reference to the development of fac- 
ulties in execution (art), while education comprehends the to- 
tality of development of a living being. The members of the 
fighting personnel must have something more than training; 
feelings must be "educated" in order to give patriotic impulses 
and to develop the appreciative faculties. In short, to fully 
complete the organization, education is necessary, and, as we 
have already seen, the whole personnel must be educated. 

But education, according to the definition, is a process of 
wide range. While we shall probably conclude in the end that 
education in this broad sense is requisite, we may first look for 
the necessity of educating the personnel in a narrower sense, 
regarding education as the "universal distribution of extant 
knowledge," without regarding questions of discipline and 
culture, but taking account solely of information. 

Since every member of the fighting machine may be re- 


George C. Thorpe 

quired, at any moment, to estimate a difficult situation and 
take the right action, he must have sufficient general knowl- 
edge to be able to reach the right conclusion. The mere fact 
that the individual may be normal, or even more than nor- 
mally active-minded, does not insure the correctness of his 
conclusions. Mazzini said: 

Without education you are incapable of rightly choos- 
ing between good and evil; . . . you can not arrive at a cor- 
rect definition and comprehension of your own mission; 
. . . without it your faculties lie dormant and unfruitful. 58 

Lester Ward says: 

To minds devoid of general knowledge all special 
knowledge presents a chaos. . . . The mind is in a state of 
confusion and bewilderment, and thought in such a 
mind, if it can be so called, forms no guide to life or 
action.' 9 

By knowledge he does not imply the idea of memorizing a 
mass of facts, but he means knowledge of laws and 
principles — generalized knowledge, "under which all facts and 
details necessarily fall." 

Causality is the most fundamental of all the faculties of 
the human mind. Man is differentiated from the animal by his 
power of ratiocination; it is his nature to reason about his sur- 
roundings; when his conclusions are false, it is because he has 
failed to assemble, or consider, all the facts material to the case 
reasoned about. For example, in ancient America, during a 
period of advanced civilization when men reasoned much, it is 
said that as many as eighty thousand willing human victims 
were sacrificed on the tomb of a chief. This was a logical pro- 
ceeding based on false premises. It was then reasoned that 
since a chieftain on earth must be accompanied by a consider- 
able force of protectors and servants during a journey, he will 
require certainly as large a force to serve him on the great 
journey into the Unknown for an interminable sojourn. 60 

Animals are said not to reason, but they certainly have a 
certain amount of knowledge — sufficient for their needs — and 
so their abstention from reasoning keeps them out of error. 



Ignorance is comparatively safe. It is error that does 
the mischief, and the stronger the reasoning faculities 
working upon meager materials, the more misleading and 
disastrous the erroneous conclusions thus drawn are for 

Of course, the great desideratum is to supply the data 
for thinking, . . . but the problem is, how to do this. Truth 
is unattractive. Error charms. It holds out all manner of 
false hopes. It is a siren song that lures frail mariners 
upon desert isles, where, with nothing to nourish the soul, 
they perish and leave their bones to bleach upon the bar- 
ren sand. All the shores of the great ocean of Time are 
strewn with these whitened skeletons of misguided 
thought. hl 

The point is, that even if the officer does not expect rea- 
soning faculties among his men, and requires only blind obe- 
dience, he can not prevent them from reasoning. Man will, 
and must, reason. He will not rest in mere animal ignorance, 
but, if uninstructed, will be in a state of confused error. What 
a difference the lack of a single fact or the misconception of a 
single principle may make in the conclusions of our reasoning! 
In the solution of military problems, for instance, the condi- 
tions proposed as to strength and disposition of opposing 
forces in being altered ever so slightly may demand an en- 
tirely different solution. A logical mind will not lead its posses- 
sor to a correct conclusion without full information about the 
question in hand. 

Ward makes the startling assertion that every human be- 
ing of mature age and sound mind should be put in posses- 
sion of all that is known. He explains thus: 

Such a proposition may sound Utopian, but it is not 
at all so when the idea is fully grasped. It would perhaps 
be clearer to some minds to say that every such being 
should be in possession of all truth. . . . When the great 
truths are known, every minor truth, every small item of 
knowledge, every detail in the whole range of experience 
and of nature, finds its place immediately the moment it 
is presented to consciousness. And only to a mind in pos- 
session of general truths do such details possess any 
meaning or any value. <>- 


George C. Thorpe 

The guiding principle in accomplishing education should 
be that the most general knowledge is the most practical. Such 
generalities, of which we should have knowledge, are the laws 
of nature. They are related to each other as cause and effect. 
To understand these laws, we must study them in this rela- 
tion. Thus, in order to understand psychology, we must know 
the fundamental laws of life — biology; but biology shows the 
living being to be a chemical organism; chemistry is based on 
physics, and physics on cosmic astronomy; the natural order 
of studying these subjects should, then, be astronomy, physics, 
chemistry, biology, psychology. In acquiring knowledge of 
each principle in this causal order the learner is, at every 
stage, on sure ground; his mental atmosphere is clear. If the 
body of his knowledge may be likened to a tall structure, he 
can be sure, when at the top, of every element beneath him. 
Any other order of learning must make for confusion and the 
process be tedious and stumbling, while the natural order may 
be pursued with pleasure and exhilaration. 

It well may be asked if this theory of synthetic education 
may be applied in the training of a fighting force. And, if it 
may, to what extent? Should only the officers be so trained? 
Or should we include every man in the organization? How 
does this scheme harmonize with the idea of specialization? 

To answer the last question first: Specialization would be 
promoted, for only after mastering the fundamental laws can 
one know for what specialty he is best fitted; then, again, 
when he begins work in his specialty he is on sure ground, 
emancipated from studies outside of his specialty; on the 
other hand, when education is not in natural order there can 
be no assurance that the beginning of specialization is prop- 
erly timed as to qualifications or properly placed as to kind. 

This disposes of the other questions proposed, for the du- 
ties of officers and enlisted men are merely specializations; 
these two great divisions of labor in military organization are 
represented by the characteristics command and obedience, 
which are, respectively, direction and execution. The two are on 
common ground as to fundamental laws, since the officer 
must know what command is applicable to a certain situation, 
and be assured, from his knowledge, that he is not giving an 



order impossible of execution; and the enlisted man must un- 
derstand such laws, in order to know how to execute the com- 
mand, for the officer can not pretend to tell his subordinate in 
full detail how to do every act implied in the execution; lor 
the officer to follow out the details would be contrary to the 
whole theory of command and obedience or direction and ex- 
ecution. The trend of progress in modern military organiza- 
tion is toward decentralization in execution — the development 
of the initiative in subordinates. The commander of many 
units issues his order in general terms, specifying only so far 
as is necessary to secure united action; the commander of each 
unit grasps his task out of the grand order and, in turn, issues 
an order for the employment of his unit without depriving his 
subordinate heads of departments of the power of initiative; 
the petty officer receives an order from his commissioned offi- 
cer and parcels out the work to the lowest grades; at every 
stage of the succession there must rest, to a greater or lesser 
extent, the power to decide as to methods of execution; there- 
fore, even the lowest subordinate must understand fun- 
damental laws, some on one occasion, others on another 
occasion. His knowledge must be as accurate, within its scope, 
as that of the commissioned officer or of the highest com- 
mander. The difference between the knowledge of the lowest 
and of the highest is in the degree of specialization. At one 
time the general was learning the private's duties; little by little 
his specializations have carried him to higher command. The 
gradation of specialization is the very essence of military or- 
ganization, and in order that it may function true to the 
theory of such organization there must be a common founda- 
tion of understanding of fundamentals; otherwise the officer 
can not merely direct, but must also execute, with the result 
that his time will be dissipated in minor executions when it 
should be devoted to larger functions. 

The most conspicuous failures in civil societies, as well as 
in the military and naval forces of all nations, are found in pe- 
nal institutions. Anyone who has observed prisoners can not 
but be impressed with either, (1) the stupidity of the majority 
as to their general surroundings, or (2) the remarkable dull- 
ness of a few as to some particular aspect or aspects of their 


George C. Thorpe 

surroundings, while acute as to other matters. Those of the 
first class are thoroughly ignorant, while those of the other 
class are abnormally (i.e., unnaturally) educated, usually mani- 
festing a development along some one line much in advance 
of their understanding of most matters. Every prison adminis- 
tration is embarrassed bv demands for literature on advanced 
studies, the requests usually coming from prisoners who rebel 
against school attendance and whose records in elementary 
studies are unsatisfactory. Such unnatural education causes an 
overbalance that upsets the subject's sense of proportion and 
results in erratic conduct and criminality. The second class of 
criminals are bv far the more nearly hopeless of reformation, 
for thev can not be restored to infantile ignorance or to a sta- 
tus from which thev can be normally developed. In the other 
class there is much less of the overbalance requiring neutrali- 
zation for a good start. 

One prison official, after considerable experience with 
prisoners, arrived at a similar analysis of the personnel under 
his care, and expressed his opinion, in substance, as follows: 
Men become prisoners because they do not appreciate the 
beauty and value of normal living; they know too few 7 of the 
facts of existence to properly estimate it. The remedy, he con- 
cluded, lies in supplying the deficiency through a course of 
lectures explaining the phenomena of Nature in their natural 

A few years ago the proposition of expecting a lot of pris- 
oners to listen to lectures on the natural laws would have ex- 
cited the risibility and jests of most practical citizens — who 
would have preferred to hang the prisoners; but today practi- 
cal criminologists have no contempt for such ideas, and cor- 
rectional institutions are doing things along these lines with 
excellent results. 

No doubt, however, some may find amusement in the pic- 
ture of a hardened old cavalryman or a seasoned salt listening, 
with anv profit, to lectures of this kind. Such amusement 
would be justified. The natural order of education would be 
opposed, on principle, to the idea of beginning the education 
at the end of life; no such undertaking can be contemplated. 
The natural order must, of course, begin with the early peri- 



ods of life. The whole thesis is, that the natural order can not 
be reversed profitably. Furthermore, it is not denied that 
there may be much value in knowledge that comes out ol 
experience independently of theoretical instruction. But expe- 
rience is a slow teacher and the method is costly. It takes expe- 
rience a life-time to do for a man what systematic instruction 
will accomplish during the formative period. The instructed 
youth will, then, be as efficient at the beginning of his practi- 
cal career as will the man with mere experience at the end of 
his life. 

Admitting that the stated fundamental education for en- 
listed men is essential to their highest efficiency in complicated 
modern war, it may be asked how such education is to be at- 
tained. It is said that the officers of every army and navy are 
fully occupied in the routine of technics and that they have no 
time for "teaching school" in the elements. This difficulty is 
answered by the alternatives of either increasing the officer 
personnel so that there will be sufficient numbers to attend to 
all educational requirements, or by rearranging the course of 
common school education so that it will follow a natural order 
and deliver to the army and navy men properly qualified to 
begin technical training. Of course the latter alternative 
implies cooperation between the direction of military policy 
and the educationalists. There is no doubt but that, in time, 
the educationalists will cooperate with all classes of users of 
education, industrial as well as national, obtaining from the 
users specifications of what is demanded and shaping instruc- 
tion to meet that demand. Such achievement in national effi- 
ciency may not be realized for a long time, and, until then, the 
military must prepare its own personnel, supplying everything 
that the public schools have omitted and that is essential. 

This implies that Army and Navy officers must be effi- 
cient teachers. There is an extremely small part of their work- 
ing hours that is not employed in that capacity. The fighting 
machine is in battle a short time, indeed, compared with the 
time spent in preparation — i.e., in training or education. The 
directors of this preparation, the teachers, should be familiar 
with the best methods of imparting instruction; i.e., should be 
familiar with the science of pedagogy, which should be an 


George C. Thorpe 

item in military curriculums. Teaching thus reduced to an art 
would make the officer's task both easier for himself and more 
effective for the instructed. 

Assuming that the personnel of the national fighting 
forces is composed of men, physically and mentally normal, 
who have an elementary education, including a knowledge of 
the fundamental laws of Nature, a scheme of technical educa- 
tion might be outlined as follows: 

I. Army, Primary. 

(a) Army cadets: 

(1) Such knowledge of foreign languages as may be 
deemed necessary for the acquirement of military 
science through technical literature. 

(2) Sanitation and first aid to the injured. 

(3) Administration, including methods of doing busi- 
ness with staff departments. 

(4) Military Law and procedure. 

(5) Regulations and customs of the Army. 

(6) International Law applicable to armies. 

(7) Mechanical and free-hand drawing and military 

(8) Photography. 

(9) Infantry, cavalry, and artillery drills, to teach the 
capacities of these arms and to inculcate disci- 
pline, as well as for the purpose of affording the 
cadet an opportunity of discovering for which 
arm he is best fitted. 

(10) Pedagogy. 

(11) Psychology. 

(12) Mathematics: descriptive geometry and calculus. 

(b) Enlisted men: 

(1) Sanitation and first aid to the injured. 

(2) Administration. 

(3) Military Law, to the extent of instructing the man 
as to his legal rights thereunder and as to his legal 
status in the military. 

(4) Regulations and customs of the Army. 

(5) International Law applicable to armies, in so far 



as it regulates the individual soldier's conduct in 
relation to enemy combatants and non-com- 

II. Army, Secondary. 

(a) Officers: 

(1) Practical and theoretical instruction in the em- 
ployment of the arm to which the officer is per- 
manently attached. 

(2) Electricity for military use. 

(3) Military history and policy. 

(b) Enlisted men: practical instruction in the employment 
of the arm to which the soldier is permanently 

III. Army, Tertiary. 

(a) Officers: 

(1) Theoretical instruction in the employment of 
armies in war. 

(2) Duties of the General Staff. 

(3) Duties of the Logistical Staff. 

(b) Enlisted men: instruction in the minor duties of staff 
work, such as clerical work, map-making, order- 
writing, photography, etc. 

IV. Navy, Primary. 
(a) Navy cadets: 

(1) Such knowledge of foreign languages as may be 
deemed necessary for the acquirement of naval 
science through technical literature. 

(2) Sanitation and first aid to the injured. 

(3) Administration, including methods of doing busi- 
ness with staff departments. 

(4) Naval-Military Law and procedure. 

(5) Regulations and customs of the Navy. 

(6) International Law applicable to the Sea. 

(7) Mechanical and free-hand drawing and map- 

(8) Photography. 


George C. Thorpe 

(9) Nautical exercises, such as swimming, rowing, and 

(10) Infantry drills, to inculcate discipline. 
(b) Enlisted men: 

(1) Sanitation and first aid to the injured. 

(2) Administration. 

(3) Naval-Military Law, to the extent of instructing 
the man as to his legal rights thereunder and as to 
his legal status in the Navy. 

(4) Regulations and customs of the Navy. 

(5) International Law applicable to the sea and sea 
forces, so far as it relates to the individual sailor's 
conduct in relation to enemy combatants and 

V. Navy, Secondary. 

(a) Officers: 

(1) Instruction in the details of the employment of 
the branch to which the officer is permanently 

(2) Naval history and policy. 

(b) Enlisted men: practical instruction in the employment 
of the branch to which the man is permanently 

VI. Navy, Tertiary. 

(a) Officers: 

(1) Theoretical instruction in the employment of 
fleets in war. 

(2) Duties of the Navy General Staff. 

(3) Duties of the Navy Logistical Staff. 

(b) Enlisted men: instruction in the minor duties of staff 
work, such as clerical work, map-making, photog- 
raphy, order-writing, etc. 

Vacancies in the general staff corps of the Army and 
Navy should be filled entirely by graduates of their respective 
staff colleges, the detail carrying with it a certain amount of 
additional promotion. Attendance at the staff college should 



be determined by selection, based upon merit and fitness. The 
commanding officers of certain units should have authority to 
nominate one or more officers annually to take a competitive 
examination in technical subjects. Vacancies at the staff college 
should be filled by the best survivals of the competition. The 
fact that a staff detail promised extra promotion would be an 
incentive to officers to try for the staff college, and would spur 
them to their best efforts from the moment they decided 
upon a military or naval career. 



'Carl von Clausewitz, On War, Vol. I, Bk. II, pp. 85—86. 

2 Ibid., p. 86. 

^Lieutenant Colonel T. A. Dodge, US Army, Great Captains — Napi 
lean, Vol. Ill, p. 425. 

4 Ibid., p. 480. 

5 Ibid., p. 501. 

6 Ibid., p. 446. 

7 Ibid., p. 466. 

8 Ibid., p. 508. 

9 Ibid., p. 510. 

H) Ibid., p. 443. 

"Ibid., p. 479. 

12 Ibid., p. 443. 

l3 Ibid., p. 465. 

14 Ibid., p. 428. 

,5 Ibid., p. 429. 

,6 Ibid., p. 430. 


George C. Thorpe 


7 Ibid. 



































p. 435. 
p. 428. 
p. 464. 
p. 466. 
p. 479. 
p. 466. 

p. 469. 
p. 548. 
., p. 459. 
p. 467. 
p. 483. 
p. 474. 
p. 495. 
p. 502. 
p. 453. 

p. 485. 
p. 452. 

p. 486. 

3b Major Eben Swift, US Army, "Remarks Introductory to the Course 
in Military Art at the Infantry and Cavalry School and Staff College, 
Fort Leavenworth, 1904." 



^Supply of Sherman's Army During Atlanta Campaign, Department of 
Military Art, Army Service Schools, Fort Leavenworth, 191 1, pp. 29 
et seq. 

38 Ibid., pp. 37-39. 

39 Ibid., p. 48. 

4() Ibid., pp. 38-39. 

41 Ibid., p. 22. 

42 Ibid., p. 24. 

4S Ibid. 


Ibid., p. 40. 

45 Lieutenant Colonel G. T. Fieberger, Elements of Strategy, pp. 63 et 

4b Major Theodore Swan, US Army, Report on the Organization of the 
German Army, p. 52. 

47 Ibid., pp. 53-54. 

48 Ibid., p. 87. 

49 Ibid., p. 88. 

5(, Ibid. 

51 Ibid., p. 89. 

52 Ibid., p. 100. 

53 Ibid., p. 122. 

54 Ibid., p. 123. 

>5 R. M. Johnston, Arms and the Race, New York, 1915, p. 76. 


George C. Thorpe 

Ml New Standard Dictionary of the English Language, Funk & Wagnalls, 


Lester Ward, Applied Sociology, p. 299. 

,8kk Duties of Man," Addressed to Workingmen, New York, 1892, pp. 
13, 74, 93. 

59 Ward, Applied Sociology, p. 302. 

b() Herbert Spencer, Principles of Sociology, Vol. I, pp. 204-205; 
Charles Letourneau, La Sociologie d'apres rEthnographie, 3e ed., Paris, 
1892, p. 291. 

61 Ward, Applied Sociology, p. 81. 

62 Ibid., p. 302. 



Academy, Medico-Surgical, 31 

German War, 32 

graduates of War, adjudantura, 
Adjudantur, 34 

higher, 35 

under chief of staff, 36 
Adjutant, of a ship, 59 

regiment, 64 
Administration, logistical function, 

in army education, 98 

in navy education, 99—100 
Administrative units, army, 41 

navy, 41 
Advanced Base, in Logisitics, 55 

fleet, 58 

coast defense establishments, 58 

ship, 60 

in logisitical problem, 77, 79 
Aerial, Navigation Division, 32 

service in Logisitics, 58 

fleet, 58 

coast defense establishment, 59 

ship, 60 

field army, 64 

in problem, 78 
Affairs, Personal, division of in 
Germany, 31 

of officers, 32 

external, naval, chief of, 54 
Ambulance, ships, in problem, 80 
Ammunition, supply needs of, 
underestimated in Euro- 
pean war, 68 

ships, in problem, 79, 80 

Analysis, of strategy and resources, 

of enemy resources, 29 
Animals, do not reason, 92 
Application, quality to win, 90 
"Applied" versus "Pure," 5 
Appointments, in German system, 

Armies in the field, naval equiva- 
lent of, 63 

organization of, 63 

education re, 99 
Arms, supply, Logistics, 10 

department in German system, 
Army, administrative unit of, 41 

officer in Strategy, 46 

organization, 61 

munitions for, 61—62 
Art of War, 9 
Artillery, in German system, 31 

of army, 63 

field army, 63 
Astronomy, its relation to other 

branches of knowledge, 94 
Attention, to details, Napoleon, 15 

prolonged, necessary to win, 90 
Auditeur, 34 

Auditing, logistic function, 52 
Authority, Sherman gave large, 26 

Base, Advanced, 55 

fleet, 58 

coast defense establishment, 58 
Biology, its relation to other 

branches of knowledge. 94 


George C. Thorpe 

Blue prints, prepared in peace for 
manufactured products re- 
quired in war, 71 

Bull Run, battle of, 22 

Business, factor in war, 4 

Cadets, army, 98 

navy, 99 
Captain, of ship, 59 

his specialty, 89 
Cartographical survey, 33 
Casualties, in problem, 77 
Causality, fundamental faculty of 

mind, 92 
Cause, and effect, 3 
Centralization, in French Army, 14 
of control, 38 
advantages of, 39 
nature of, 41 
Chart maneuvers, 74 
Chemistry, relation to other 

branches of knowledge, 94 
Chief of Staff, supervision, 36, 41 
presides over logistical staff, 50 
of navy, 53 
of fleet, 57 

of home shore establishment, 58 
of coast defense establishment, 

of army, 62 
Civil, administration, 20 

government, logistical function, 
Civil War, American, preparation 

poor for, 21 
Claims for damages, under Logis- 
tics, 52, 56 
in fleet, 58 
in coast defense establishment, 

in army, 63 
in field army, 64 
Clear conceptions, necessary to 

win, 90 
Clerical work, Logistics, 20 
Clothing, in German organization, 
30, 36 

standardization of, 43 
Coast defense establishment, 57, 
combined with dockyard, 59 
Cohesion, tactical, 90 
College, Staff. See Staff College 
Colliers, capacity of, in problem, 

Combatant ships, in problem, 82 
Command, captains' specialty, 89 
is a division of labor, 94 
steps of, 95 
Commercial manufacturing indus- 
tries teach what, 42 
Commissary, duties of defined, 

under Sherman, 23 
Communications, 20 
naval, chief of, 54 
lines of, 57, 59 
army, chief of, 62 
army lines of, 63 
Company, as army administrative 

unit, 64 
Concentration, strategic, 27 
Conceptions, clear, necessary to 

win, 90 
Constructor, assigned to Intend- 

ant, 36 
Construction and Repair, under 
Logistics, 52, 55 
fleet, 58 
in problem, 77 
Corps, staff, 35—36 

tactical unit, 64 
Correspondence, 32 
Cost of armies in different coun- 
tries, 72 
Courage to win, 90 
Credit, war, 72 
Criminals, analysis of, 96 

remedy, 96 
Culture, discipline and, 91 
Customs, in army education, 98 

Damages, claims for, 52 
Decentralization, in execution, 38 
advantages of, 39 



Defense, coast, establishments, 57, 
combined with dockyard, 59 
Defensive, the, organization for, 

Deployments, modern, impose 

conditions, 90 
Deserters, return of from abroad, 

Details, attention to by Napoleon, 

15, 18 
Diplomatic negotiation, 65 
Direction and execution as divi- 
sions of labor, 94 
Disbursing funds, 52 
Discipline, under general staff, 51 
and culture, 91 

taught by drills in army educa- 
tion, 98 
in navy education, 100 
Division of labor, aim of Logistics, 
in German Great General Staff, 

command and obedience in, 94 
Divisions, army, duties of staff of 
in Germany, 34, 36 
administrative unit, 64 
Divisions, navy, place in organiza- 
tion, 59 
like army division, 64 
Dockyard. See Home Shore 

Drawing, in army education, 98 

in navy education, 99 
Drills, as logistical function, 20 
in army education, 98 
in navy education, 100 
Duplication, avoid to secure 
economy, 72 

Economy, German department of 

military, 30 
demands certain consolidations, 

will win war, 72 

war economy to secure maxi- 
mum injury to enemy, 72 
re weapons, 72 
in Logistics, 72 
Education, under general staff, 51 
of logicical functionaires, 51 
defined, 91 
information, 91 
synthetic, 94 

of officers and enlisted men, 94 
re specialization, 94 
users of, 97 
technical, scheme of, for army, 

technical, scheme of, for navy, 
Educationalists, cooperate with 

users of education, 97 
Effect, cause and, 91, 94 
Efficiency, demands certain stand- 
ardizations, 45 
defined, 89 

means of attaining, 91, 97 
Engineer, duties, 20 
mechanical, in navy, 55 
fleet, 58 

mechanical, in coast defense es- 
tablishments, 58 
ship, 59 
army. 62 
field army, 63 

mechanical, in fleet, in problem, 
77, 78 
Enlisted men, education of, 94 
in educational scheme of army, 

in educational scheme of navy, 
Entrenching, logistical function, 10 
Equipment, supply, Logistics, 10 
Error, charms and is dangerous, 
of man, 93 
Estimate, of the situation, 1 1 
of the situation, von Moltke's, 27 
money, 52 


George C. Thorpe 

Ethical affairs, 52 
Execution, direction and, as 

divions of labor, 94—95 
Experience, costly as teacher, 22, 

External Affairs, navy, chief of, 54 
assistant for in fleet, 57 
assistant for in home shore es- 
tablishment, 58 
assistant for in coast defense 

establishmenut, 58 
army, chief of, 62 
assistant for in field army, 63 

Factory preparedness, 71 
Failures, social, in prisons, 95 
Fighting, mediums of, 3 

machine, 65 

machine needs cooperation of 
laborers, 69 

frequently appears organized 
for everything but war, 71 
Finance, in German system, 30, 36 

and supply, 55 

in fleet, 58 

in coast defense establishments, 

ship, 60 

army, 63 

field army, 64 

regiment, 64 

in problem, 77 
First Aid, in army education, 98 

in navy education, 99—100 
Fleet, in organization, 57 

chief of staff of, 57 

assistant for personnel of, 57 

operations of, 57 

external affairs of, 57 

army equivalent of, 63 

train of, 75 

employment of, education, 100 
Food, plenty of for Russian cam- 
paign, 12 
Foreign Affairs, head of depart- 
ment of, in Strategy, 45 
Formations, tactical, loose, 90 

Fortications in German organiza- 
tion, 30 

Fortresses, staff at, in Germany, 33 

Frederick the Great, infantry of, 

Fuel consumption, in problem, 75, 

Games, war, 74 

Garrison administration, German, 

General Staff, 5 

of divisions in Germany, 33 

chief of, has jurisdiction over 
adjudantur and 
intendantur, 36 

of navy, 48 

homogeneous with logistical 
staff, 49 

authority in, 49 

a corporation, 50 

prime function to formulate tac- 
tical plans, 50 

other functions of, 51 

of navy, 53 

of home shore establishments, 

of coast defense establishments, 

of ship, represented by captain 
and adjutant, 59 

of army, 62 

of corps, 62 

of field army, 63 

instructions in duties of, army, 

in navy education, 100 
General will, represented by cen- 
tral power of state, 38 

Geographical, statistical division in 
German staff, 33 

German Army, 27 

German Great General Staff, 31 
officers of, how trained, 32 
officers of returned to troops, 32 
chief of, 31-32 



assistants to chief of, 32 
divisions of labor in, 32 
Government, civil, in occupied ter- 
ritory, 52 

Historical records of campaigns, 

History, military, division of in 
German staff, 33 
in educational scheme, 99—100 
Home Shore Establishment, 57—58 
chief of staff of, 58 
assistant for personnel of, 58 
assistant for external affairs of, 

logistical affairs of, 58 
Hood, General, in Atlanta cam- 
paign, 23 
Hospital, service in Russian cam- 
paign, 16 
place in Logisitics, 20 
corps administration, 36 
service standardized, 44 
under Logistics, 52 
requirements of service, in prob- 
lem, 77 
ships, in problem, 77, 80 
How to execute, is problem of im- 
mediate commander, 39 

Ignorance, is safe, 93 
Indoctrination for laborers, 68 
Infantrymen, of Frederick the 

Great, 90 
Information, belated, 16 
organized collection of, 17, 20 
collecting, by German staff, 32, 

valuation of, 34 
in reference to education, 91 
Initiative, 20 
Inspections, under general staff, 

Instructions, war, 34 
Intelligence, bureau of, and Logis- 
tics, 45 

head of bureau of, in Strategy, 

duties of, 46 
Intendantur, German official, 34, 
under chief of staff, 36 
Interchangeability of weapons, 43 
International Law, in Board of 
Strategy, 45 
in army education, 98 
in navy education, 99 
Invalid system, 30 
Invalids, in problem, 77 
Inventions, promote Logistics, 3 

Jomini, Baron de, contribution to 
the literature of Logistics, 1 
historiographer to Napoleon, 1 

Knowledge, element of efficiency, 
meaning of, 92 
general, most practical, 94 
difference between knowledge 
of lowest and highest mili- 
tary units, 95 
Labor, division of, is aim of Logis- 
tics, 29 
division of German staff, 32 
command and obedience as, 94 
Laboring man, his cooperation re- 
quired to support fighting 
machine, 69 
care for his social condition, 69 
secure his loyalty, 69 
Languages, in army education, 98 

in navy education, 99 
Law, International, in Board of 

Strategy, 45 
International, in army education, 

Military, in army education, 98 
International and Military, in navy 

education, 99-100 
Legal services, part of logisitical 
work, 52, 56 


George C. Thorpe 

in fleet, 58 

in coast defense establishment, 

for ships, 60 

army, 63 

field army, 64 

regiment, 64 

in problem, 88 
Logistical, board, 15 

features consolidated, 45 

navy staff of, 49 

staff homogeneous with general 
staff, 49 

staff authority, 49 

meetings of staff, 50 

staff functions, 51 

staff, fleet, 58 

staff of home shore establish- 
ment, 58 

staff of coast defense establish- 
ment, 58 

staff, army, 62 

staff for field army, 63 

problem, 74 

activities, in problem, 76, 78 

army education in logistical 
functions, 99 

navy education in logistical func- 
tions, 100 
Logistics, paucitv of literature of, 
1, 2 

said to be transportation and 
supply, 1 

likened to stage management, 2 

parvenu in science, 2 

evolution of, 2 

obscuritv of, explained, 3 

not merely transportation and 
supply, 10 

must be defined for sake of or- 
ganization, 1 1 

place in organization, 14 

summary of, 19—20 

in Atlanta campaign, 23-25 

aim of, 29 

specialized function, 42 

and intelligence service, 45 

national, 45 

peace-time, 68 

duty of to prepare laboring man, 

economy of, 72 
problem in, 74 
includes education, 89 

Machine, fighting, 65 

kinds of, 65 
Machinery, construction and re- 
pair of, 53 
Machines, for making war mate- 
rial, preared in peace, 71 
Man, difference from animal, 92 
reasoning faculties of, 92 
must reason, 93 
confused error of, 93 
should know general truths, 93 
"Man on the Spot," 91 
Maneuvers, chart, 74 
Maps, lack of, 15 
collection of, 20 
staff duties re, 34 
Marches, 34 
Materials, raw, legislation re, 71 

commission for, 71 
Mathematics, in army education, 

Manufacture of war products, ad- 
vanced information for, 71 
Manufacturing, provide for war 
consumption, 71 
private companies made ready 
in peace for war require- 
ments, 71 
Medical, division in German sys- 
tem, 31 
Medical service, in Logistics, 55 
fleet, 58 

coast defense establishments, 59 
ship, 60 
army, 63 
regiment, 64 
field army, 63 
in problem, 77 



Medico-Surgical Military Academy, 

Militia, naval, chief of, 54 
army, chief of, 62 

Minister of Marine, political head 
of the Navy, 53 
assisted by two staffs, 48—49 

Ministry of War, German, 29 

Mission, education necessary to in- 
dividual to determine, 92 

Mobilizing war resources, 72 

Moltke, General von, estimate of 
the situation, 27 

Mounted troops, in German or- 
ganization, 31 

Munitions, supply of, 68 

British Muntions Act to prevent 
strikes, 70 

Napoleon, never used word "logis- 
tics," 1 
his historiographer, 1 
multiplicity of duties of, 15 
size of his army, 15 
his attention to details, 15 
his army strength in Russia, 16 

National Board of Strategy, has 
the centralized control, 40 
only one board of strategy, 42 
controls national logistics, 45 
organization of, outlined, 45 
has an administrative officer, 46 
clerical force of, 46 
economic affairs of, 46 
organ of expression of, 46 
secretary of, 46 
makes strategical estimates, 48 

Natural order of study. 94 

Nature, laws of, 90 

are the generalities that man 
should know, 98 

Navy, Department receives task 
from Strategy Board, 41 
administrative units, 41 
head of department of, in Strat- 
egy, 45 
officers of, in Strategy, 46 

functions of, tactical and logis- 
tical, 48 
head of, assisted by two staffs, 48 
mission of, 49 
general staff of, 49 
logistical staff of, 49 
organization of, outlined, 53 
militia, chief of, 54 
Nautical exercises, part of navy ed- 
ucation, 99 

Offensive, the, organization de- 
signed for, 66 
Officers, preparation of, for Civil 
War, 21 
German training of, 32 
German, returned to troops 
from staff, 32 
education of, 94 
as teachers, 97-98 

secondary education of, in army, 

secondary education of, in navy, 
Operations, navy, chief of, 54 
assistant for, in fleet, 57 
army, chief of, 62 
assistant for, in field army, 63 
Orders, transmission of, 34 
Ordnance, standardized, 43 
in Logistics, 55 
fleet, 58 
ship, 59 
army, 63 
field army, 63 
in problem, 77 
Organization, lack of caused 

French defeat in Russia, 19 
in Germany, 29 
made by general staff, 51 
re education, 89 
Organization, not only for peace, 
but for war, 71 

Pay, duties of, under Logistics, 52 
Peace, years of in proportion to 
war vears, 3 


George C. Thorpe 

way to, lies in perfection of war 
means, 4 
Pedagogy, in army education, 98 
Penal, institutions, 95 
Pensions, in German organiza- 
tions, 30 
under Logistics, 52, 56 
fleet, 58 

coast defense establishments, 59 
army, 63 
field army, 64 
Perseverence, necessary to win, 90 
Personal affairs, division of in 
Germany, 31 
of officers, 32 
Personnel, under general staff, 51 
assignments and promotions of, 

pay of, 52 
Navy, chief of, 53 
assistant for, in fleet, 57 

assistant for, in home shore es- 
tablishments, 58 
assistant for, in coast defense es- 
tablishments, 58 
Army, chief of, 62 
assistant for, in field army, 63 
munitions factories must be in- 
doctrinated, 68 
Photography, in army education, 
in navy, 99 
Physics, relation of, to other 

branches of knowledge, 94 
Plans, German, 34 
Police, military, 15, 20 
under Sherman, 25 
army, 63 
field army, 64 
Policy, study of, in educational sys- 
tem, 99-100 
Political questions, in general staff, 
power controls fighting force 

through Strategy, 39 
authority decides what is to be 
done, 39 

Posts, permanent military, 63 
Power, element of efficiency, 89 
Preparation, neglected in past 
wars, 3 
cannot be made in complete se- 
crecy, 5 
of our officers at beginning of 

Civil War, 21 
lack of, creates confusion, 22 
not complete until laboring man 
is prepared, 69 
Prisoners, analysis of, 95 
Private companies and war muni- 
tions, 71 
Probabilities of war not estimated 
before American Civil War, 
Procedure, rules of, for general 

staff, 51 
Products. See War Products 
Promotions, under general staff, 
under logistical staff, 52 
Psychology, based on what, 94 

in army education, 98 
Public Works, in Logistics, 56 
home shore establishments, 58 
coast defense establishments, 59 
"Pure" versus "Applied," 5 

Qualifications, for admission to lo- 
gistical staff, 52 
of military character, 89 

Quartermaster, duties of defined, 
under Sherman, 23 

Railway, service under General 
Sherman, 23 
in Prussian concentration, 27 
time-tables prepared, 27 
Brigade, 32 

Division, in Great General Staff, 
Rations, components of, in prob- 
lem, 83-85 
computation of, 80-82 
Raw materials, legislation re, 71 



commission for, 7 1 
" — Stuff Bureau," 71 
Reconnaissance, staff duties re, 34 

in war, 35 
Records, historical, of campaigns, 

Regiment, as a unit, 64 
logistical staff of, 64 
Regulations, instructions in, for 
army education, 98 
in navy education, 99—100 
Religious affairs, part of logistical 
duties, 52, 56 
fleet, 58 

coast defense establishment, 59 
ship, 60 
army, 63 
regiment, 64 
in problem, 78 
Remounts, German systems, 31 
army, 63 
field army, 63 
Repair, ships, in problem, 79-80 
Repairing, logistical work, 20 
Resistance, elimination of, to 

State's policies, is object of 
the State in war, 38 
Resolution, quality to win, 90 
Resources, enemy's and our own, 
compared, 29 
applied to requirements of Strat- 
egy, 29 
competition in mobilizing, 72 
Riding Institute, 31 
Road-making, 20 
Rowing in naval education, 99 
Rules of procedure for general 

staff, 51 
Russian, campaign, a logistical fail- 
ure, 2, 12 
army strength, opposing Napo- 
leon, 16 

Sailing, in naval education, 99 
standardization of, 44 
under Logistics, 52 
in logistical staff, 55 

in fleet, 58 

coast defense establishment, 

ship, 60 
army, 63 
field army, 64 
regiment, 64 
in problem, 77 
Sanitation, in army education, 

in navy education, 99—100 
Science of war, 22 
Secretary of the Navy, political 
head of navy, 48 
assisted by two staffs, 48 
"Service" branch of German or- 
ganization, 30 
Shelter, 34 

Sherman, General, and Logistics, 
organized railway service, 23 
his difficulties in obtaining a 

staff, 23 
his campaign in Georgia almost 

entirely Logistics, 24 
his organization an historical 
step in Logistics, 26 
Ship, in organization, 59 
captain and adjutant of, 59 
logistical staff of, 59 
smallest navy administrative 
unit, 64 
in action, division of labor, 91 
Ships, hospital and ambulance, in 
problem, 77, 78 
repair, in problem, 79 
ammunition, in problem, 79, 80 
supply, in problem, 79, 80 
tactical employment of, in prob- 
lem, 79, 80, 82-85 
Shiloh, battle of, 22 
Shirking, under Sherman, 25 
Shock, in Tactics, 90 
Shore establishments, administra- 
tion of, 53 
home, 57—58 
chief of staff of, 58 


George C. Thorpe 

assistant for personnel, 58 
assistant for external affairs, 58 
logistical staff of, 58 
combined with coast defense es- 
tablishment, 59 
Sick, care of, 10 
Signal service, 55 
fleet, 58 

coast defense establishments, 59 
ship, 60 
army, 63 
field army, 64 
regiment, 64 
in problem, 78 
Sociological work required to pre- 
pare laboring man for war, 
introduce schools for laboring 
man, 70 
Soldier, cost of, in different coun- 
tries, 72 
Spanish-American War, lessons 

from, 43 
Specifications for war supplies pre- 
pared in peace, 71 
Squadron, Navy tactical unit, 64 
Staff College, Navy, chief of, 54 

Army, chief of, 62 
Staff, general. See also General 
Napoleon's in Russia, numbers 

of, 19 
difficulties of General 

Sherman's, 23 
German Great General Staff, 31 
officers specialists, 49 
corps, vacancies in, filled how, 
State, object of, when at war, 38 
determines when policies are be- 
ing resisted, 38 
head of Department of, a mem- 
ber of Strategy, 45 
needs fighting machine to en- 
force policies, 65 
Straggling, under General 
Sherman, 25 

Strategy, meaning of, 1,5 

Evolution of, 2 

defined, 9 

controlled by political power, 39 

details of, determined by mili- 
tary experts, 40 

National Board of, 40, 42, 74 

National Board of, makes stra- 
tegic estimate, 40 

and Tactics not all of the studv 
of War, 74 

every problem in should be 
solved logistically, 74 
Strikes, effect of in time of war, 69 
Subsistence, logistical function, 10, 
52, 57 

in German organization, 30 

in fleet, 58 

ship, 60 

army, 63 

field army, 64 

regiment, 64 

in problem, 78 
Supplies, in kind, 36 

under Logistics, 52 
Supply, 10, 20, 55 

fleet, 58 

coast defense establishment, 59 

ship, 60 

army, 63 

field army, 64 

regiment, 64 

needs of Germany 

underestimated, 68 

relation to labor, 69 

in problem, 77, 80 
Surveys, trigonometrical, 33 

topographical, 33 

cartographical, 33 
Swimming, in naval education 
scheme, 99 

Tactical, formations loose, 90 
Tactics, meaning of, 1,2 

most ancient war labor, 2 

defined, 9 



specialized function, 42 
Tactics and Strategy not all of the 
study of War, 74 
every problem in should be 

solved logisitically, 74 
education in, 98-100 
Tankers, capacity of, in problem, 

Task, element of efficiency, 89 

minor and major, 89—90 
Teachers, army and navy officers 

as, 97 
Team-work, 4 

Technical instruction, in educa- 
tional scheme, army, 98-99 
in education of navy, 99—100 
Topographical, survey, 33 

sketches, 34 
Train, fleet, in problem, 76, 81 
Training defined, 91 
Transport, delay of, in Russain 
campaign, 13 
river, 13, 14 
Transportation, not lacking in 
Russian campaign, 14 
is a part of logistical work, 

19-20, 52, 56 
in German Staff, 34 
fleet, 58 

coast defense establishment, 59 
ship, 60 
army, 63 
field army, 64 
regiment, 64 
in problem, 77-78 
Treasury, military, in German War 

Ministry, 31 
Trigonometrical survey, 33 
Truth is unattractive, 93 
Truths, great and minor, 93 

Uniforms, standardized, 43 

Vacancies in staff corps, how filled, 

Vessels, carrying, 76 

War, in primitive stage of develop- 
ment, 3, 4 

mediums of, 3 

business factor of, 4 

art of, 9 

conduct of, 9 

science of, 22 

ministry of, German, 29, 31, 32 

instructions, 34 

object of, how attained, 39 

department of, receives task 
from Board of Strategy, 40 

head of department of, is in 
Strategy, 46 

Ministry of, 62 

products of, and manufactures, 

is a competition in mobilizing re- 
sources, 72 

credits, 72 

organize for, 71 

games, 74 

army instruction in handling 
armies in, 99 

navy instruction in handling 
fleets in, 100 
Wars, numbers of, recorded in his- 
tory, 3 

years of, in proportion to years 
of peace, 3 
Waste, eliminated by organization, 

Weapons, economical, defined, 72 
Will, general (See also General will), 

quality to win, 90 
Winning, impulse, requires what 

individual qualities, 90 
Work of war, divisions of, 1 , 11 
Works, Public, 56 

home shore establishments, 58 

coast defense establishments, 59 

army, 62 



The following paragraphs are quoted from the NDU Press 
edition of Pure Logistics, which was first published in 1986. Dr. 
Stanley L. Falk, the distinguished military historian, identified 
the following list of sources which may be helpful for readers 
interested in additional research in the subject area: 

"While much has been published on logistics in the years 
since World War II, book-length studies have been primarily 
historical and analytical rather than theoretical in nature. 

"A few authors have, however, produced broad logistical 
overviews. The most recent [as of 1986], and most controversial 
in some of its conclusions, is Martin Van Creveld, Supplying War: 
Logistics from Wallenstein to Patton (1977), an analytical history of 
Western logistics from the 17th century through World War II. 
Among other useful insights in this book, Van Creveld's 
convincing examination of the Franco-Prussian War has 
destroyed the myth of Prussian logistical supremacy in that 
conflict. In The Sinews of War: Army Logistics 1775-1953 (1966), 
James A. Huston has written an impressive, comprehensive 
account of the American Army that includes an effort to establish 
some general principles of logistics. A complementary work is 
Erna Risch, Quartermaster Support of the Army: A History of the Corps, 
1 775-1939 (1962). No comparable volumes have been written for 
the Navy and Air Force, but Rear Admiral Henry E. Eccles 
discusses logistical history, organization, and planning in his 
broadly based Logistics in the National Defense (1959). One 
noteworthy earlier book, actually published on the eve of World 
War II, is George C. Shaw, Supply in Modern War (1938), which 
conceives of logistics in more traditional terms. 

"There have also been a number of efforts to examine 
logistics in specific American wars. No one, unfortunately, has 
seen fit to write a logistical history of military efforts during the 

George C. Thorpe 

colonial period. Lee Kennett, The French Armies in the Seven Years' 
War: A Study in Military Organization and Administration (1967), 
deals almost entirely with the European side of what Americans 
call the French and Indian War ( 1 764-1 763) but offers a valuable 
description of French logistical organization and practices of the 
time. By contrast, the American Revolution boasts several works 
on logistical subjects, including Erna Risch, Supplying Washington's 
Army (1981); David Syrett, Shipping the American War, 1775-1783 
(1970); and R. Arthur Bowler, Logistics and the Failure of the British 
Army in America (1975). 

"Major volumes on Civil War logistics are scarce, Richard D. 
Goff, Confederate Supply (1969) being the only general study. Carl 
Davis, Arming the Union: Small Arms in the Union Army (1973) and 
Robert Bruce, Lincoln and the Tools of War (1956), cover weapons 
development and procurement in the North, while Frank E. 
Vandiver, Ploughshares into Swords: Josiah Gorgas and Confederate 
Ordnance (1952), does the same for the South. 

"Historians of logistics have tended even more to avoid 
World War I. Robert D. Cuff, The War Industries Board: Business- 
Government Relations in World War I (1973), examines industrial 
mobilization, one of the newer logistical themes emerging from 
the conflict. Beyond this volume, however, World War I logistics 
has been left to the memoirs of the participants. Thus, Major 
General James G. Habord, The American Army in France, 
1917-1919 (1936); Brigadier General Johnson Hagood, The 
Services of Supply: A Memoir of the Great War (1927); and Admiral 
Albert Gleaves,^4 History of the Transport Service (1921), reflect the 
wartime logistical experience of their authors. Former Assistant 
Secretary of War Benedict Crowell and Robert Wilson, How 
America Went to War: An Account from the Official Sources of the 
Nation's War Activities (6 vols., 1921), grew out of CrowelFs 
experience in industrial mobilization, manpower management, 
and oversea munitions supply. 

"The bulk of recent writing on logistics has focused on World 
War II, much of it the product of the official history programs of 
the armed services. Richard M. Leigh ton and Robert W. Coakley, 
Global Logistics and Strategy (2 vols., 1955, 1968) and Duncan S. 
Ballantine, U.S. Naval Logistics in the Second World War (1947), 
provide an overall view of worldwide logistics. R. Elbertson 



Smith, The Army and Economic Mobilization (1959); Robert H. 
Connery, The Navy and the Industrial Mobilization in World War II 
(1951); and Byron Fairchild and Jonathan Grossman, The Army 
and Industrial Manpower (1959) examine economic and industrial 
mobilization and procurement. Men and Planes (1955), the sixth 
volume in Wesley Frank Craven and James Lea Cate (eds.), The 
Army Air Force in World War II, describes recruitment and 
procurement, and the latter topic is also the subject of Irving B. 
Holley, Jr., Buying Aircraft: Material Procurement for the Army Air 
Forces (1964). ' 

"John D. Millet, The Organization and Role of the Army Service 
Forces (1954), is a history of the Army's central logistical 
organization. Worrall Reed Carter, Beans, Bullets, and Black Oil: 
The Story of Fleet Logistics Afloat During World War II (1953), and 
Carter and Elmer Ellsworth Duval, Ships, Salvage and Sinews of 
War: The Story of Fleet Logistics Afloat in Atlantic and Mediterranean 
Waters During World War II (1954), do for the Navy what Services 
Around the World (1958), the seventh Craven and Cate volume, 
does for the Army Air Forces. Army theater logistics in Europe is 
covered in Roland G. Ruppenthal, Logistical Support of the Armies 
(2 vols.; 1953, 1959). More than a score of additional volumes in 
the official history series describe the activities of the Army 
technical services. 

"Logistics in the Korean War has yet to find a historian, but 
a useful picture of Army service operations in the field emerges 
from more than 100 interviews with participants that appear in 
Captain John G. Westover, Combat Support in Korea (1955). 

"Considerably more, however, has been published about 
logistics in Vietnam. Colonel Ray L. Bowers, Tactical Airlift (1983), 
is a detailed official account of an important aspect of Air Force 
logistics. Vice Admiral Edwin B. Hooper, Mobility, Support, 
Endurance: A Story of Naval Operational Logistics in the Vietnam War, 
1 965-1 968 (1972), takes a broader view of Navy logistics. And the 
Army's series of Vietnam Studies includes several logistical 
monographs by senior officers who served in Southeast Asia: 
Lieutenant General Joseph M. Heiser, Jr., Logistic Support (1974); 
Major General Robert R. Ploger, U.S. Army Engineers, 1965-1970 
(1974); Lieutenant General Carroll H. Dunn, Base Development 
in South Vietnam, 1965-1970 (1972); Major General Thomas 


George C. Thorpe 

Matthew Rienzi, Communications-Electronics, 1962-1970 (1972); 
Lieutenant General John J. Tolson, Airmobility, 1961-1971 
(1973); and Lieutenant General Charles D. Myer, Division- Lev el 
Communications, 1962-1973 (1982). Finally, the US Joint Logistics 
Review Board, Logistic Support in the Vietnam War: A Report (3 vols., 
1970), contains eighteen monographs on various aspects of 

To update this list, readers may also want to consider: The 
Lifeblood of War, by Julian Thompson (1991); Moving Mountains:. 
Lessons in Leadership and Logistics from the Gulf War by Lt. General 
William G. Pagonis (1992); Desert Victory, by Norman Friedman 
(1991); One Hundred Days by Sandy Woodward (1992); and The 
Big "L": American Logistics in World War II, edited by Alan