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FEB 12 1903 

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CLASS ^ XXc. No. 


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In presenting- "The Story of The Forty-ninth"' to the public 1 have only endeavored to 
give Some of my recollections and not a history of the regiment. My ptjint of view was 
from the ranks, and the things of which I have written are naturally those experienced by 
the enlisted man. 

Of the enlisted men of the regiment a volume could be written. They were from every 
grade and class of our citizenship. Army life in the ranks is a great leveler. The hod 
carrier and the banker slept under the same blanket. The well digger and the preacher 
touched elbows and shared each others troubles and pleasures. The day laborer and the 
lawyer were partners in games of cinch, while the farm hand and the doctor ran the guard 
lines together. There were enough men of every profession, line of business or occupation 
to supply any community. It is said that the wealthiest man in the regiment was the 
colonel, and the next in line with this world's goods was a high private It must be ad- 
mitted that the enlisted men of the Forty-ninth were able to "make good" under all con- 
ditions or circumstances. 

The otticers of the regiment were in every respect fitted to command such men. For 
the most part it was their chief aim to care for their men, and by their own example Set 
the standard for soldierly conduct. 

The author desires to express his thanks for kindly assistance rendered by many, and 
especially to Lieut. Frank M. Haradon, of Co. H, and Private Joseph H. Allen, of Co. F. for 
a number of the plates used in illustrating this humble work. Colonel Dows. Lieut. Nattin- 
ger, Serg't. W. E. Bickel and The Times-Citizen-Union, of Jacksonville, Fla., are also en- 
titled to credit for favors shown. 

He who looks for literary merit in this book will waste his time. If my former com- 
rades read its pages with any degree of interest then 1 shall be satisfied 

J. E. Whipple. 
Vinton, January 5, 1903. 

To those three most potent forces in inaintainin.i; 
the safety and integrity of our country, the American 
Volunteer, the Soldier's Mother, and the Army Nurse. 
are these lines gratefully dedicated. 





Preparations for War — Called Out — The Parting- and De- 
parture — At Camp McKinley. 

A third of a century had elapsed after 
the close c.f the civil war before the 
United States was called on to show her 
power, and then her strength was scarce- 
ly tested much less exhausted. ]n fact 
the Spanish war, in which the 49th Iowa 
Volunteer Infantry was enlisted, was a 
tame affair when compared with the gi- 
gantic struggle of the sixties. It is not 
news to my readers that great excite- 
ment existed throughout the country 
following the blowing up of the battle- 
stiip Maine, for that lamented affair oc- 
curred only four and a half years ago. 
During those two months, before war 
was declared, there was a very great deal 
of criticism because of the apparent 
slowness of the authorities and their de- 
sire to avoid war. The failure of the 
president to spit fire, or even to talk 
"sassy," caused many very worthy gen- 
tlemen in private life to tell what they 
would do if they were running things. 
However the president and his advisors 

were not idle by any means. During 
those two months they were quietly, but 
rapidly, getting things in shape for busi- 
ness. The declaration of war came and 
the president made requisition on the 
governors of the various states for a total 
of 125,000 men, for two years, or until 
the war should end. 

Then it was that the members of the 
First Regiment, Iowa National Guard, 
afterwards the Forty-ninth Iowa Vols., 
began to get busy. The twelve com- 
panies, compohing the regiment, were 
at their armories all day on Monday, 
April 25th, anxiously awaiting the ex- 
pected orders lo go to the rendezvous at 
Des Moines. Men who had never taken 
the slightest interest in the home mili- 
tary companies, and never given any at- 
tention to them except to occasionally 
call them tin soldiers, now heartily ap- 
plauded them and called them "Bully 
Boys," both words accented. 

The company commanders received 

The Stor}^ of The Forty-ninth. 

orders on tliH ni'^ht of thfi 25th to report 
Ht once. Theti it wna tiiAt the steHLD 
whistles sounded and the belis rang, and 
thousands of people tumbled out of bed 
to see the boys start. It is a oever to- 
be forgotten night and the scenes which 
I witnessed at Vinton were undoubtedly 
the same that were enacted in every 
town that furnished acompany. Cheers 
there were in plenty, and tears too. The 
mothers and fathers were there — every 
father proud that he could give a son to 
the service of his country, and every 
mother proud, too, only her heartstrings 
vibrated nigh unto breaking. Here and 
there a man left a wife; brave, splendid 
women! Here and there were to be seen 
a little bronze button in the lapel of 
men whose forms were more erect than 
usual, and whose eyes A'ere agiint with 
the tires of lung ago. 

But I must not dwell too long on the 
good b^es that were said, or the tears 
tiiat were shed. 1 must proceed with 
the story of the 49Lh. That regiment, 
together with the other three regiments 
of the state, was encamped on the state 
fair grounds before the close of the 26th. 
The tirst detachment to arrive was com- 
posed of companies C, F, G anp K of the 
49th, under command of Colonel Dows. 
The regiment was quartered in the six 
horse barns on the east side of the race 
track. Thus two companies occupied 
^ach barn. A driveway extened through 
each of these barns, with ten box stalls 
on either side. This cluster of buildings 
was the home of the regiment for nearly 
seven weeks. During these seven weeks 
we learned many things that we didn't 
know before. Some of the boys thought 

they knew all about soldiering, but they 
found, ere their service of thirteen 
months expired, that there were a few 
other things besides executing "fours 

Before proceeding further it will be 
proper to give a list of the field and staff 
oflQcere, and also the locations of the 
companies and the names of thier officers 
as they were at this time. 

Field and staff: Colonel, W. G. Dows, 
Cedar Rapids: Lieut. Col., vacancy; 
Majors, C. D. Ham, Dubuque, S. E. 
Clapp, Toledo, and B. F. Blocklinger, 
Dubuque; Rog't. Adj't, Capt. C. C. Mc- 
Collum. Clinton; Bat. Adj'ts, A. M. 
Jaeggi. Dubuque, and E. E. Reed, 
Monticello; Inspector of Small Arms; 
Practice, Capt. W. H. Thrift. Dubuque; 
Quartermaster, Lieut. F. W. Woodring^ 
VVaverly; Commissary of Subsistance, 
Lieut. C S. Goodwin, Vinton; Sur- 
geons, Mnjor A. L. Wright, Carroll; 
Capt. J. R. Guthrie, Dubuque, and 
Capt. E. L. Martindale, Clinton; Chap- 
lain, Capt. Thomas E, Green, Cedar 

Company A, Dubuque; Captain Wil- 
lard M. Flinn; First Pieut. Jacob Bal- 
lough; Second Lieut. C. J. Stewart. 

Company B, Waterloo; Captain F. R, 
Fisher; First Lieut. C W. Cottton; Sec- 
ond Lieut. J, A. Gurry. 

Company C, Cedar Rapids: Captain 
George A. Evans: First Lieut. H. J. 
Sugru; Second Lieut. A. U. iViachemer. 

Company D, Charles City: Captain 
C B. Roziene; First Lieut. C. A. Dan- 
forth; Second Lieut. D. W. Fowler. 

Company E, Independence: Captain 
H. A. Allen: First Lieut. M. B. O'Brien 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

Seoood Lieut. R. ?. Snow. 

Company P, Tipton: Captain L. J. 
Kowell; First Lieut. F. H. GudsoIhs 
Second Liout. J, E. Barllev. 

Company G, Vinton: C-iptain ,1. F 
Traer; First Lieut. C. F. Young; Second 
Lieut. Guy Kellogg. 

Company H, Marsbalitown: Captain 
C. S. Aldiich; First Lieut. B. F. Moffatt. 

Company I, Waukon: Captain A. G. 
Stewart; First Lieut. K. A. Nichols. 

Company K, Toledo: Captain H. G. 
Ross; First Lieut. P. W. McKoberts. 

Company L, Clinton: Capiain C. L. 
Root; First Lieut. F. L HoUerau; Second 
Lieut. Geo. Michelson. 

Company M, Maquoketa: Captain E. 
C. Johnson; Second Lieut. G. M. John- 

Each company consisted of about 
forty live men. The companies were 
soon recruited until the barns were over- 
flowing with as noisy a set of youngsters 
as ever lived. Every recruic met with a 
vociferous greeting when he entered 
Camp McKiuley. The fact that he was 
a "rooky" was impressed upon his mind 
until every particle of self importance 
vanished, and he became properly sub- 
missive. The evolutions of military drill 
was to him a sealed book, and he couldn't 
have told the difference between "fours 
right" and "balance all," although gen- 
erally he was well versed in the latter 

One day a young man appeared in 
camp and was assigned quarters with a 
half dozen young fellows, one of whom 
wore the chevrons of a corporal. Now 
this youth believed that persons having 

military rank were exalted indeed, l)ut 
he knew nothing a out the difference 
between a non com. and a brigadier. 
One of his new bunk mates seeing this, 
told him that he would give him all the 
information that lay in his power, and 
that was not a little. Be told the rooky 
that he was frequently consulted b> Col. 
Dows and Gen. Limujln on important 

The rooky felt that the troubles, he 
had b^en anticipatintr, were over, and 
congratulated himself that he had fallen 
into the hands of one who could post 
him fully. He assured his new friend 
that he appreciated his kindness in offer- 
ing to teach him and said, "Now that I 
am here what is expected of me, what 
am 1 to do." 

"Well," said the instructor, "you must 
be careful of your actions towards the 
corporals and sergeants. You saw that 
man with chevrons on his arms, did you 
not, the one who went out just after you 
came in." 

The rooky assured him that he "saw 
the fellow but did not notice him par- 
ticularh." "Thai man" continued the 
good fairy "is not a fellow; he is a cor- 
poral, and you will not be here long un- 
til you will notice him all right. In fact 
the army regulations require that for 
one week after joining you must salute 
a corporal or a sergeant when you meet 
one. Whenever this corporal, who is 
quartered with us comes into the stall 
here you must immediately rise to jour 
feet, salute and remain standing, your 
arms hanging at your side and your eyes 
straight to the front." 

The Stor}^ of The Fort^^-ninth. 

"How long must I stand that way" 
said the recruit, anxiously. "O, you are 
to stand in that position until he gives 
you permission to be seated. 1 don't 
think he will require you to stand more 
than two-thirds of the time." 

The recruit received a lot of other in- 
formation along the same line, among 
which was the assurance that "these 
fellows you see around camp with things 
on their shoulders that look like bana- 
na peels are waiters. They are hired by 
the government to polish the boys' shoes 
and to do a thousand things you may 
want done. Some of them are a little 
haughty and need calling down frequent- 
ly. Talk right up to them and they will 
soon learn their places." But the rook- 
ies were not rookies long. In a very 
short time they were the principal char- 
acters in the initiatory team. 

The state fair grounds had become 
Camp McKinley, and the troops present 
consisted of the four regiments of Iowa 
national guards, all under command of 
Gen. J. R. Lincoln. Thousands of peo- 
ple visited the camp and drill grounds 
everyday. On Sundays excursion trains 
were run from different parts of the 
state and on these days the size of the 
crowd ranged as high as twenty thous- 
and. To the onlooker it seemed that 
the boys in blue were having acontinous 
picnic. Had the onlooker taken a few 
whirls at the daily drills of four hours, 
besides the many other duties, he would 
have felt differently about the matter. 

The forenoon was devoted to battalion 
drills, while brigade and regimental 
drills was the order for afternoons. 
There was no fun in these drills but they 

resulted in great benefit to both officers 
and men. These drills, and the out 
door life, tanned the skin, hardened the 
muscles, and, together with the army 
diet, fitted us for the life we were soon 
to experience in the Florida climate 
The records will show that the men who 
had the benefit of the training at Camp 
McKinley withstood the fearful scourge 
of typhoid, that invaded the camps at 
Jacksonville, better than did those who 
joined the regiment after its removal to 
the south. Those who joined the regi- 
ment at Jacksonville, under the second 
call, constituted about one-third of its 
force when its ranks were full. Yet of 
all who died half were from this smaller 
number who did not have the benefit of 
the training at Des Moines. 

One thing that attracted attention 
every day was the large number of young 
girls about the camp. Many of them 
were anxious to make a "mash" on a 
soldier boy, and, in the language of the 
street, the boys were generally there 
with the goods. Many of these girls 
were very young and evidently of respec- 
table families. Most of them should 
have been turned over the maternal 
knee and exercised with a broad carpet 
slipper in the good old fashioned way. 
Had this been done, or had the parents 
kept better tab on the giggling misses 
some of them would have had less 
trouble a little later, Certain organiza- 
tions in Des Moines, composed of women, 
would have saved themselves the trouble 
of adopting resolutions denouncing the 
soldiers for things which, primarily, was 
the fault of many of the parents of the 
capital city. 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


Scarcely had we got settled in our 
quarters when the question of getting 
four regiments accepted, when but three 
were called for, came up to bother ue. 
It was made known that it would be 
necessary to either send one regiment 
home, or else disband it and let its mem- 
bers join the other three regiments. 
Neither regiment would consent to dis- 
band, nor did either want to go home. 
Finally it was decided that the junior 
regiment should go home and wait for 
the second call, should there be one. It 
was reasoned, by those in authority, that 
our regiment was the junior regiment 
because our colonel was junior to the 
otber three, his commission having later 
date than theirs. This reasoning, was 
in accordance with military usages, al- 
though we wouldn't admit it then, for 
every man was boiling over in his anxie- 
ty to get to the front. The telegraph 
wires were worked, and a number of in- 
fluential men from northeastern Iowa 
were soon on the ground. There was a 
hot time, in certain spots, in the old 
town of Des iSloinea. After two or three 
conferences with the state authorities it 
was decided to sena a telegram to the 
Iowa congressional delegation, asking 
that the order be changed so that four 
regiments be accepted instead of three. 
This plan solved the problem as was 
shown by a telegram, received April 30, 
1898. As this whole afilair was an im- 
portant event in our hidtory, the tele- 
gram, which carried the intelligence of 
our salvation, should be given here. It 
is as follows: 

"Governor of Iowa. — Your apportion- 
ment is three regiments of infantry and 

two light batteries, total maximum 
strength of all grades, commissioned and 
non-commissioned and enlisted of 3,328. 
I now authorize this changed to four regi- 
ments of infantry each composed of 
eighteen field, staff and non commission- 
ed staff officers, twelve companies, each 
composed of three officers and sixty-five 
enlisted men; total aggregate strength 
of all grades 3,336 and no more." 

tJ. A. Alger, 
Secretary of War. 

Notice was immediately sent out to 
camp. It is needless to say that the 
good news was received with many hear- 
ty cheers 

Quinine has ever been an important 
article for army consumption. Our first 
introduction to it was on the night of 
May Ith. It was a cold night and the 
bo)s suffered much, but they did not 
suffer in silence. Silence may be golden 
under certain conditions, but it is not a 
striking characteristic of American sol- 
diers, especially when they feel like 
kicking about something. They grum- 
bled about ihe cold and longed for feath- 
er beds. The surgeons feared that an 
epidemic of malaria n ight invade the 
camp. So they sent for the first ser- 
geants, and gave each a supply of quinine, 
in capsules, with instructions to give 
each man in the regiment a capsule. 
Directly each sergeant appeared in his 
company's quarters, waked the boys up 
for most of them had gone to sleep by 
this time, (midnight,) and giving each a 
quinine capsule, said: "Here, swallow 
this, it will warm you up." 

The scheme worked, and nearly every 
man took his medicine like a little man. 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

Then they be^an to realize that they had 
done something that they would rather 
not do. They "warmed up" all right. A 
kick was made, but of course it did no 
good. All sorts of remarks ^ere in- 
dulged in, and one fellow was heard to 
say: "The next time I join the army it 
will be of the salvation variety and I am 
going to carry a big drum." 

The next day after the quinine episode 
the ladies of Des Moines gave the regi- 
ment a big dinner. If there is anything, 
above all others, that a healthy soldier 
is particularly strong at it is in eating a 
good dinner. Pie and chicken took the 
taste of quinine out of our mouths, and 
contentment and good nature once more 
held full sway. 

On the day following the big dinner 
Governor Shaw, accompaninied by his 
staff, reviewed the four regiments, on 
the plain between camp and the city. 
It is a very pretty ceremony, and one 
that a person would rather witness than 
participate in, especially if the flies are 

Once, since the war, and at a review of 
the regiment since it has again become 
a national guard affair, I suffered untold 
agony because of one of these pests 
The regiment was in line and my com- 
pany was on the extreme left. I was 
standing in front, at attention, my sword 
at an order and mj^ ej'es straight to the 

Just as the governor, and accompan- 
ing officers, started towards the right 
and thence to ride slowly down the front 
of the long line, a fly planted itself on 
my nose. 

Now, my nasal appurtenance is not of 
the inconspicious kind; and it is sensi 
tive, not only to the amused smile that 
accompanies the glance of the eye, which 
never fails to linger when once it comes 
within range of the vision of any 
stranger, but it also is sensitive to touch, 
exceedingly so. Now this fly was not of 
a timid nature or retiring disposition. 
Not on your life, it wasn't. Its nature 
was of the inquisitive sort, being a lady 
fly, undoubtedly, and its aggressiveness 
was very prononced, it being of the 
strenuous school. 

My, how that fly did dig! And the 
governor twenty plattoons away, his eye 
taking in the blue uniforms and glisten- 
ing brasses, while he secretly prayed 
that his horse would shy neither to the 
right nor to the left. I could not brush 
the confounded fly off with my hand for 
the white glove would have attracted 
the attention of every one of the five 
thousand spectators, it seemed to me. 

Why don't the governor hurry; why 
don't his norse run off with him; any- 
thing, so this fly will vamouse." But no, 
the governor lingered, and the infernal 
fly got in its deadly work. But there is 
an end to all things, and, just as reason 
was tottering on her throne, the chief 
executive appeared, and the fly trans- 
fered its attention to a fat and docile 
looking staff officer. 

One of the most interesting and pleas- 
ant incidents, of the period spent In 
Camp IMcKinley, was the living flag, 
which was given on Maj' 19th. It took 
thirteen bundled schoolchildren to com- 
pose the flag. A stand was erected on 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

the ground, just inside the track, that 
looked like the bleacher seats at a base 
ball game. The children were seated 
there in thirteen rows, those on one row 
heina dressed in white, the nezt in red, 
and so on the whole width of the stand 
In the upper left hand corner the child- 
ren were all dressed in blue Large 
stars, made of pastboard, were held in 
place by children. It was a very in- 
spiring sight, and one not soon to be 
forgotten. All four regiments were out 
and passed the stand in salute to the 
flag. At a given signal every chi'd drew 
a small flag from hiding and waved it 


On the morning of May 21st the 50th 
regiment (formerly the 2nd) left for the 
south, their destination being Tampa, 
Florida, although it went to Jackson- 
ville, having received orders to that ef- 
fect while enroute. The 49th escorted 
one battilion (Major MoflBt's) to the 
train, which they embarked amid the 
cheers of our fellows. 

The question that was discused every 
day was about our probable destination, 
for no one doubted that we would move. 
One could hear all kinds of news (?) re- 
garding the matter. One report was 

that we were going to the mountains of 
Tennesee, the next to New Orleans, 
another to Ckickamauga. Scarcely had 
these reports besome well circulated 
when came the word that we would leave 
within a few days for Wasington, D. C. 
This gave way to the report, said to be 
absolutely true, that we would go to 
San Francisco, thence lo Manila. Of 
coarse none of these rumors had any 
foundation, except that there was some 
reason for believing that we would go to 
San Francisco. 

Some ladies, members of the Women's 
Relief Corps, I think, presented the reg- 
iment with a fine flag on May 16th. The 
process of physical examinations went 
forward as fast as possible. About thirty 
per cent, of those who enlisted, were re- 
jected by the examining board, chief of 
which was a regular army surgeon. 
Some of those who were first rejected 
were examined a second time and passed 

In order to prevent confusion in after 
years it was decided to change the num- 
bers of the regiments, beginingone num- 
ber above the highest in the civil war 
As this was the 48th, our regiment be- 
came the 49th when mustered in. 


Mustered In — Enroute to the South— Camp Cuba Libre- 
A Dav at St. Augustine. 

June 2, 1898, will always be romemher- 
ed as the day on which we became 
Uncle Sam's soldiers, that being the day 
of muster-in. The place was one of the 
large pavilions on the grounds, the mus- 
tering oflBcer being Captain J. A. Olm- 
sted, of the regular army. Each com- 
pany was mustered separately. After 
each man had answered to his name, 
as it appeared on the muster roll, every- 
one, with up lifted hand took the oath 
that made us the Forty-ninth lowaU. S. 
Infantry. June 4th was the first pay 
day with us. The pay was from the 
state and covered the time from the day 
of our enlistment to the day of muster- 
in. The manner of paying off, on this 
occasion, was different from that prac- 
ticed by United states paymasters. The 
money was placed in small envelopes, on 
which was written the name of the man 
to whom the money in each belonged. 
It took about §20,000 to pay the regi- 

On June 9th orders came directing 
the regiment to proceed to Jacksonville, 
Florida, and there to report to Gen. 
Fitzhutjh Lee. Arrangements were^made 
to leave two days later. The First bat- 
talion, field, staff and band, under com- 
mand of Col. Dows, went over the Chi- 
cago & Milwaukee, the Second battalion, 
under command of Major Blocklinger, 
went over the Great Western, and the 
Third battalion, Major Fisher, went over 
the Wabash. The experiences of the 
three sections were similar, doubtless. 
As I was with the Second battalion I 
will give only my observations while 
enroute. The baggage was nearly all 
packed on the 10th. Early on the morn- 
ing of the 11th a number of large furni- 
ture vans, (one for each company) ap- 
peared and were soon loaded and started 
for the trains. The oflBcers and men 
went aboard at points near the old camp. 
While there had been a general desire to 
leave, and, on this morning, there was a 



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The Stoi"}' of The Fort\--ninth. 

fever of excitement manifest in every 
countenance, everybody bade farewell to 
Camp McKiuley with some regret. For 
almost seven weeks it had been our home 
and we had b?conae attached to the 
place. As ours was the last regiment to 
leave thousands of people, from the city, 
were on hands to see us off. If I remem- 
ber aright we left Des Moines about ten 
o'clock and started on our long trip to 
Jacksonville. Very few of us had ever 
been so far south and we were all anx- 
ious to see the country. 

This 11th day of June is one long to 
be remembered. The people all along 
the route knew that the battalion would 
be taken over the Great Western on this 
day and many of them were at the sta- 
tions as we went by. The first stop made 
for any length of time, was at Waterloo. 
It was told us that the good people of 
that city had a feast ready for us. Wat- 
erloo was the home of company B, Vin- 
ton and Independence, which had furn- 
ished companies G and E, were located 
less than 30 miles distant. When we ar- 
rived at Waterloo and disembarked we 
found what appeared to be the people of 
the greater part of three counties ready 
to welcome us. The feast, which we had 
been looking forward to with such pleas- 
ure, was beyond our expectations in 
variety, quantity and quality. When the 
dinner was over opportunity was given 
the boys to say goodbye to their friends 
Of course it was a sad parting for man}, 
and for some it was a last parting. 

Leaving Waterloo we proceeded east- 
ward, making several stops before pass- 
ing beyond the borders of the state. At 
every town were crowds of people to bid 
us Godspeed. At about nine o'clock we 

reached Dubuque. A finn lunch was 
furnished by the people of Dtibuque, 
and was served to us on the cars by a 
large number of beautiful ladies. We 
left Dubuque about 11 o'clock, and be- 
fore midnight all were fast asleep in 
their berths. We entered Chicago at an 
early hour Sunday morning. Prom the 
time we entered the suburbs on the 
west, until we left the great city 
to the south, ovi-r the lilitiois Cen- 
tral railroad, at 10 o'clock, we received 
much attention in the way of cheers and 
by ttie waving of flags and the like. 

It is impossible to describe in detail 
the manner in which we were received 
by the people of Illinois, as we passed 
through their beautiful towns and vil- 
lages. It being Sunday the people were 
out in great numbers. Even in the 
country, where the wagon roads crossed 
the railroad tracks, were to be seen 
many people, for they seemed to know 
that a train load of soldiers was to pass. 
Our experiences all the way through the 
state of Lincoln and Grant was the same 
as that which we had the day before in 
Iowa. There were flowers and flags, 
ai.d flags and flowers on every side- 
Most of the boys did a land office busi- 
ness something after this manner. A 
fellow would receive a large bouquet 
with some girl's name attached. This 
he would divide into several smaller 
ones, to each of which he would attach 
his name ard address and a request that 
the girl receiving it would wri e to him 
At the next town he would distribute 
them among the many girls who were 
sure to be on the platform. By this 
means a correspondence was started be- 
tween our boys and several regiments of 


The Story of 7'he Forty-ninth. 

girls in Illinois. Some of the boys kept 
up the correspondence and I know of 
several cases where marriage resulted 
after the close of the war. 

We had dinner at Champaign and sup 
per at Centralia. We earned travel ra- 
tions with us but got coffee at different 
points along the route. We went to bed 
in Southern Illinois and waked up on the 
morning of the 13Lh in Southern Ten- 
nessee. The change in the appearance 
of the country was very striking. The 
land spemed very poor and the inhabit- 
ants suited the country. Instead of the 
waving corn and great fields of oats and 
wheat, that we had been used to, we saw 
cotton, and very little else in the way of 
crops. We saw no fine pasture lands 
with sleek Shorthorns grazing thereon. 
About the only live stock in sight was 
an occasional mule. 

We took breakfast this morning at 
Holly Springs, Miss. At this place some 
of the boys went to the railroad lunch 
counter to get some provender, The 
proprietor saw an opportunity to 
make a stake and charged about two 
prices. His experiences during the next 
few minutes made him a sadder, though 
very much wiser, man. Some of the 
boys payed what the food was worth, 
while others compromised the matter by 
paying nothing. 

Prom Holly Springs we proceeded 
through the northern part of Mississippi 
and Alabama. There were few white 
people and they were somewhat shy. In 
Illinois and Iowa we saw flags every- 
where. I do not remember seeing a 
single flag in either Tennessee or Missis- 
sippi, and very few in Alabama and 
Georgia. One of the boys gave a small 

flag to a twelve-year old boy, who was 
greaLly pleased to get it, and said that he 
had never seen one until the soldiers 
came along. Birmingham, Ala., was the 
best city of the south we saw on the 
route, and it was at this point that we 
received the most cordial reception ac- 
corded us south of the Ohio. After 
leaving Birmingham the country im- 
proved somewhat, although it soon be- 
came night and we did not see much. 
Next morning we stopped at Lumber 
City, a small town in Georgia. A large 
saw mill was located here. A dismal 
country surrounded the town. 

While here I talked with and old man, 
who was a typical southerner. He was 
eighty years old and had always lived in 
that county. He said that he had seen 
a great deal of the world, however, as he 
had been in the Mexican war, and was a 
quartermaster in the Confederate army. 
He was proud of his county and actually 
thought that he lived in the garden 
spot of the universe. I asked him what 
land was worth there. 

"Well sah," said he, "right heah near 
town it is wo'th fo'h dollahs an acre, sah; 
but you all kin go back into the country, 
sah, and buy it foh a dollah and a half, 

I half suspected that the old fellow 
was a land agent and sprung the price 
about four hundred per cent. 

At about two o'clock in the afternoon 
of this day, June 14, we arrived at Camp 
Cuba Libre, Jacksonville. As our camp 
was but a short distance from the rail- 
road tracks we were not long in get- 
ting there. As soon as a number of 
pine trees, were removed, the tents 
were duly installed as a part of the 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

1 1 

camp. At this time there were nioe reg- 
iments there including the 49th. This 
force constituted the Second divipion of 
the Seventh army corps. We were as- 
signed to the Third brigade, the other 
two regiments thereof being the Second 
and ITourth Virginia. 

Iowa had two regiments, Illinois two, 
Virginia two, and Wisconsin, New Jersey 
and North Carolina one each. It was 
admitted by everybody that the 49th 
was the best equipped regiment in the 
camp. All of us had good, clean cloth- 
ing, and what was better, money. While 
at Des Moines we had kicked because 
we were not sent to the front sooner. 
We now realized the wisdom shown by 

Gov. Shaw in not allowing us to leave 
until we were in shape and had been 
paid off. Troops from other states had 
not received a cent of pay, and most were 
poorly equipwed with clothing etc. Tbe 
tents which we used were poor, being the 
ones which the national guard of Iowa 
had used for years. 

We were crowded at the beginning, and 
were even more so when the recruits be 
gan to arrive, which they did in about 
two weeks. The condition of our tentage 
and the hot weather made our surround- 
ings somewhat unpleasant. However 
the resourcefulness of American boys is 
well known, and it was not long until we 
were pretty woU fixed. 


America's Oldest City and Its Many Interesting Points- 

About the Nesfro. 

One of the most popular places to visit 
was St. Augustine, which was distant 
from Jacksonville about thirty-five miles. 
Excursions were run to that city on 
Sundays, and large numbers of soldiers 
took advantage of the opportunitiy to 
to visit the oldest town in the United 

Arriving there one day in July, four of 
us chartered a sail boat and its darky 
owner and proceeded to the north beach, 
where we put in an hour or more hunting 
shells and bathing. While here we saw 
our first porpoises. They were four or 
five feet long. One of them got into a 
narrow strip of water at high tide and 
couldn't get out at low tide. About fifty 
yelling, young soldiers, dressed in na- 
tures uniform, tried to catch him. They 
did did not do so, though several of the 
boys had hold of him. He was as slip- 
pery as an eel. 

We returned to the city and had din- 
ner, after which we took in the different 
points of interest, plaza and monuments 
old city gates, caihedral and Presby- 

terian chnrch, old slave market, old Fort 
Marion, sea walls, oldest house in Amer- 
ica, Dade monument and St Francis 
barracks. The plaza is simply a small 
park, with a Confederate monument and 
an old Spanish monument. The inscrip- 
tions on the latter were in the Spanish 
language so I could not tell what they 
signified. The natives could not tell us: 
at least all of whom we made inquiries 
did not know. They were evidently too 
tired to take the trouble to investigate 
the matter. A more blunt spoken per 
son than myself would call it pure 

The city gates are of stone and show 
evidence of great age. They are all that 
remains of the stone wall which once 
surrounded the town as a protection 
against the Indians and other enemies 
of the inhabitants. 

The Presbyterian church is a fine 
modern structure and was erected by a 
wealthy eastern lady in memory of her 
daughter, who died early in life. Our in- 
telligent colored driver gravely informed 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


us that it cost two hundred million dol 
It probably cost about a hundred thous- 
and dollars However this is as near the 
truth as one should except in this his- 
toric town. 

The old slave market is a pavilion 

shaped building on the plaza. The block 
on which the victim stood has been re- 
placed with a fountain. Our driver's 
grandmother was sold here for a fabu- 
siim, which is now forgotten by me. 

The most interesting of all the sights 
is old Port Marion. It is surrounded by 
outer stone walls which are fast decay- 
ing. Adjoining and surrounding the fort 
is a deep ditch or moat which was filled 
with water in times of danger. A draw- 
bridge furnished means of getting into 
the fort. There are numerous rooms with 
entrances from thej court, through doors, 
and narrow, iron barred windows, high 
up on the outside. There are several 
dungeons: one had been sealed up, per- 
haps two hundred years ar more, by the 
Spanish. The only opening is from an- 
other cell and is only four feet high. 
When discovered and broken into by the 
Americans, many years ago, it was found 
to contain the skeletons of a man and a 
woman, both chained to the wall; silent 
and grewesome evidence of Spanish 
cruelty and inhumanity. A broad, stone 
stairway leads from the court to the top. 
The United States occupied it and kept 
it repaired until a few years ago. When 
we were there iv was in charge of an old 
ordinance sergeant, who had been in the 
regular army thirty-eight years. 

The building, which was shown by the 
guides as tho oldest house in America, is 
a queer looking structure in the 
south part of the city and shows unmis- 

takable evidence of the handiwork of 
modern oiechanics. This building, like 
many other things we saw, is a most 
glaring humbug. 

The Dade monument is in the govern- 
ment cemetery and was erected to com- 
memorate the deeds of the soldiers 
who lost their lives in the Seminole war. 
St. Francis barracks are government 
buildings occupied by regular soldiers. 
Only a small guard were there at that 

Among the interesting features are the 
narrow streets and old houses. The or 
dinarv street is only about thirty feet 
wide, while the narrowest street is only 
seven feet across. There are a few side- 
walks three or four feet wide. Generally 
there no sidevi'alks. Nearly every street 
is as smooth as a floor and are made of 
shells and cement. There are many fine 
residences, owned principally by north- 
erners who spend their winters there. 

We had an opportunitv, while in the 
army, to study the negro at close range. 
Hardly had we landed in our camp at 
Jacksonville, when hundreds of negros 
swarmed all about the company streets. 
Nearly all wanted washing to do. Some 
sold pies and jelly rolls, and such pies 
and jelly rolls were never seen before, 
and I do not care to see any more of the 
same kind. Notwithstanding the utter 
worthlessn'3Ss of these alleged articles of 

food, there were lots of the boys who 
would buy them. Many of the poorer 
negros would hang around the cook 
shacks at mess time and would beg the 
refuse from the kitchen. I have even 
seen them fish out bones from the slop 
barrels so as to get the bits of meat that 
etill adhered to them. Some of the fel- 


The Story of The Fort^^-ninth. 

lovvs used to say that they would take 
these pieces of meat, make them into 
mince pies, and then come back to camp 
and sell them. I could never believe 
this, however. 

The southern negro is an entirely dif- 
ferent individual from the northern 
negro. In the south he is to be found 
on every hand. In numbers he is truly 
apalling. The northern white man does 
not appreciate, fully, the importance of 
negro question. Tnere is such a question 
in the south and it is ever present- 
What the solution is to be is more than 
I am able to tell. We of the north have 
criticised the whites for their attitude 
toward the blacks. Personally, I felt 
that the whites of the south were wholly 
to blame for the conditions that exist in 
nearly every part of that section of 
our country. I have changed my views 
very materially since the summer of 
1898. I do not think the blacks are to 
blame. Perhaps a large part of the fault 
lies with whites of another generation, 
All will admit that a grave mistake was 
made when the right of franchise was 
given to the ex-slave so soon after freedom 

The negro is of three colors, yellow, 
brown, and black. The yellow is, of 
course, mulatto, and has more or less of 
the blood of the proud Caucasian cours- 
ing through his veins. The best and 
the worst are the yellow. Most of the 
leaders, the professional men and busi- 
ness men of the race are mnlattos. Some 
of the yellow women are eminently re- 
spectable, especially among the better 
classes. The houses of ill fame have 
large numbers of this color. 

I doubt if the browns can claim any 

white blood, although among children 
of the same family you may see yellow, 
brown and, not infrequently, coal black 
As a rule the brown negro has fairly 
regular features and most of them are 
above the average in point of inteili- 

The real black is the least promising. 
The ignorance exhibited is something 
worth thinking about. Thousands o 
them have no more expression in their 
countenances than a government mule 
and that is saying a good deal. They are 
crafty, and as liars they can give cards 
and spades to the most accomplished 
politician that ever straddled a fence 

They are great on religion. The most 
ignorant among them will gravely explain 
problems that would have floored Henry 
Ward Beecher. If these instructions 
were not instructive, they at least were 
entertaining to one who cared for amuse- 
ment, Their preachers are all old men, 
and as ignorant as the most benighted of 
them. Just outside of the city of Sa- 
vannah and near our camp, when we were 
there, was a little negro hamlet of not 
more than two hundred inhabitants. Yet 
they had five preachers and five congre- 
gations, three being Methodist churches 
and two Baptist. 

Of course all of the negro churches 
are not of this kind. In the cities they 
have some well educated preachers and 
many fine church buildings. The negros 
of Jacksonyille have one of the largest 
and imposing churches to be seen in that 

Although, in many respects, the pres- 
ence of the negro is the great drawback 
to the country, it is doubtful if they 
could get along without him. He is 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


about the only common laborer they 

The social relations of the two races 
are far different there from what they 
are anywhere else on earth. In return- 
ing to the regiment from a furlough I 
left St. Louis one night about eight 
o'clock. In the smoking car I struck up 
an acquaintance with a southerner, who 
was returning to his home in Tennessee. 
Somewhere in Illinois a negro came into 
the car. My southern friend said: 

"When we get across the Ohio river 
that d — n nigger will have to ride in 
the nigger car." 

It was true. They have a different 
place for them south of Mason and 
Dixon's line. The white man has use 
for the negro and uses the men for all 
kinds of labor out of doors and eat the 
food cooked by t he negro women, and 
in infancy, is nursed by her. The same 
feeling exists with every white man, 
whatever may be his station in life. 
One day while going to the city from 

the second camp at Jacksonville I fell in 
with a member of the 4th Virginia. We 
entered a place kept by a mulatto to get 
some ice cream. Just before leaving, 
while seated at one end of a very long 
table, a negro entered and asked for 
some lemonade. He sat down at the 
other end of the table. I thought 
nothing about it. When we had 
left the Virginian told me that if I had 
not have been with him he would have 
left the place at once when the "nigger" 
came in and sat down. During the talk 
he said: 

"A southern white man, whatever 
may be his social position, will not sit at 
the same table with a negro because he 
feels that by so doing he is placing him- 
self on the same level with the darky." 
Yet in other respects he is connected 
with the negro more closely than a nor- 
therner would permit. "Many white 
men in the south," he continued, "have 
yellow mistresses in preference to white 


Rainy Season — Celebration of the Fourth — Friendship Be- 
tween Virginians and Hawke3^es. 

Both at Jacksonville and St, August 
tine are large hotels, Most of them are 
open for busines only in winter. The 
roan or woman from the north, who goes 
there for climate, can get it in large 
quantities, but a well filled pocketbook 
is necessary. The native have great re- 
gard for the sojourner amongst them, 
providing he is a free spender. The 
Seventh army corps furnished the people 
of Jacksonville an opportunity to replen- 
ish their exchequer, and 1 never heard of 
one who failed to do his part in releiving 
the boys of their spare change. 

Within a short time after arriving at 
Jacksonville life became a routine of 
camp duties. The weather was very 
warm and the men suffered, at times, 
from the heat. They have a rainy sea- 
son in Florida and it began when we ^&d 
got well established in camp. When we 
arrived there we thought that we had an 
exceedingly fine camp ground. We had 
not long endured the rains until we dis- 
covered that level land does not make 

the best camping place, however fine 
may be the prospect during the dry sea- 
son. There was no drainage except a 
deep ditch which ran along the east side, 
between our regiment and the ith Illi- 
nois. We had a number of heavy rains 
late in June and early in July. In a 
short time the sandy soil was saturated 
with water. This condition of the soil 
and the rank vegitation, which was hard 
to keep under control, and the hot 
weather were all productive of malaria 
and typhoid, the result of which after- 
wards proved disastrous to the health of 
the entire command. 

The people of Jacksonville made great 
arrangements to celebrate the Fourth of 
July. A parade, through the city, of the 
entire corps was to be one of the princi- 
pal features. The Fourth came along at 
the proper time, but it proved to be a 
rainy day. So the parade was postponed 
until the 5th. I had an excellent oppor- 
tunity to see this parade, as I was sent 
down tc the "Aty in charge of a large 



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The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


number of recniito, who could not take 
part in the affair, as there were no arras 
for them. Prom the west entrance to 
the no^toffice building; I saw the entire 
array p^ss. Of course Gen. Fitzhugh 
Lee led the parade on his big grey horse, 
«nd followed bv his entire staff. In the 
light of the events of forty >ears ago it 
seemed strange to see a grandson of Oen, 
Grant as one of his aids, the other being 
his own son, Fitzhugh Lee, Jr., (shortly 
afterwards appointed to a lieutenantcy 
by President McKinley). These two 
^young men rode side by side, seemingly 
forgetful of the fact that their sires had 
fought on opposite sidt*s in the old war. 
There were other noted men on Gen- 
Lee's staff. One, Major Russell B. Har- 
rison, is the son of an ex p-esident. 

Only two or thres regiraents had pas- 
sed when it began raining and the wind 
blew almost a gale from the south. Ev- 
ery man had his poncho, or rubber blan- 
ket. Sometimes the wind would blow so 
hard that it would nearly break up the 
companies, (they were marching in col- 
nmns of companies), 

On the Fourth the whole regiment 
went visiting. In a body, though with- 
out any particular order, and with the 
band in tht- lead, a thousand yelling, 
young soldiers went to the camp of the 
2nd Virginia. The colonel of that reg 
iment and Colonel Dows, and other offi 
cers, made speeches. After a whole 
lot of cheering we went to several other 
camps, including the 4th Virginia and 
the 50th Iowa. 

It was DO unusual thing to get up a 
crowd and go visiting to other camps. 
Sometimes several hundred of the boys 
would start on trips of this kind with 

the regimental band at their head. Men 
from other regiments would visit us in 
the same way, I remember one parade 
thro gh our camp in particular, al 
though r have forgotten to what regi- 
ment the visitors belonged It was the 
most unique, impromptu affair I ever 
heard of. There must have been eight 
hundred or a thousand of thpra. They 
had taken off their outer clothing. They 
had then wrapped their array blankets 
abnut their forms in the way an In- 
dian wears that article, and for a head- 
gear thev had taken their haversacks 
and put them on with the flaps hanging 
down behind It was at night, and in 
the moonlieht they looked very ranch 
like noble red men, especially as their 
actions and the sounds that they made 
were intended to carry out that idea. 

Many acquaintances were made with 
men of o'her regiments. At th first 
Jackson\iIle carap our nearest neiehbors 
werj the 4th Illinois. They had been 
there some time when we arrived. In 
going through Illinois we had stopped 
in a number of towns that furnished 
companies to that regiment. In one 
town a man handed me a letter addressed 
to his son and asked me to deliver it. 
Of course the letter would have reached 
the eon through the mai's, but the 
father thought the letter would be bet- 
ter appreciated if delivered by one who 
had so recently been through the old 
home. As soon as possible after getting 
in camp I hunted up the boy and gave 
him the letter. I could see that he was 
more th in pleased to hear from home in 
this way. 

There existed a very warm friendship 
between the members of the 4th Vir- 


1 ne ;:!>cory or i ne rorcy-nintn. 

ginia and the 49th Iowa. I do not know 
the origin of this but I do remember one 
incident that undoubtedly contributed 
thereto. One night some sort of an 
entertainment was held over in the 4th 
Virginia camp and our band went oyer to 
assist in the affair. They played a num- 
ber of pieces which were heartily ap- 
plauded. Finally the band played "Dix- 
ie." The shout that went up from those 
Virginians must have raised the dead. 
Prom this time on the Virginians were 
our firm friends. There was one piece 
that our band refrained from playing 
after we went south. That was "March- 
ing Through Georgia." It was known 
that this was a painful subject to the 
southern people and no possible- good 
could be done by playing it. Shortly 
after the incident referred to, when 
'Dixie" was played, the 4th Virginia 
played "Marching Through Georgia," 
thus showing that no rancor existed in 
their hearts toward the north. From 
this time there was no North, no South, 
so far as these two regiments were con- 

One night, while we were at Savannah 
I was riding in a ear to camp from 
the city. In the seat in front of me were 
two young soldiers, members of the 4th 
Virginia. They were more than half 
seas over, being in that condition of in- 
toxication when they felt at peace with 
themselves and with the world. As 
they sat with their arms about each 
other, and apparently oblivious to their 
surroundings, one of them said: "Shay, 
d-do you all know what I think?" 

•'No, I didn't kn-know 'at you all had 
contracted that habit. Better let some 
co'pl do your thinkin' ". 

"Well sah, said the first fellow, with- 
out paying any attention to the advice, 
"I think 'at the Fo'th Va'ginia is the 
best regiment in the a'my.'less'n it is the 
Fo'ty-ninth Iowa." 

Well sah," said his companion, "I 
think 'at the Fo'tv-ninth Iowa is the 
best regiment in the worr,'less'n it is the 
Fo'th Va'ginia." 

And so they were agreed. That was 
the opinion apparently, of every man 
among them. Those fellows would 
rather fight for the 49th than for them- 
selves. One night some 49th men got 
into a scrap with a larger number of 
North Carolinians, and were getting 
worsted, when some 4th Virginians came 
up and helped "do" the Carolinians. 

Foot ball and base ball teams were or- 
ganized in a number of regiments. The 
49th had good teams, and at every game 
the Virginians always turned out in 
large numbers. They would take every 
bet in sight and then offer to lick anyone 
who criticised the playing of our fellows. 
The applause and other forms of en- 
couragement from the Virginians con- 
tributed much to the success always at- 
tained by the 49th players, for they nev- 
er lost a game out of the many played. 

Sixteen miles from Jacksonville is 
Pablo Beach, a resort frequented by 
people from the city. A railroad runs 
there and it was well patronized by the 
soldiers from the camps. The town is a 
small affair. It was from this place that 
most of Iowa's soldiers had their first 
look at the ocean. It was about the 
only thing worth looking at, except the 
beach, which was a fine one. Very soon 
after the train arrived several hundred 
men had donned bathing suits and were 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


having a fine time riding the waves. It 
was some time before I learned how to 
do it. If one stands still the wave is 
sure to engulf him. I had just learned 
that it was necessary to give a little 
spring upward when the wave strikes, 
and it would pass under me. At this 
time one of the boys appeared on the 
scene. He was new at the business and 
when the first wave came rolling in, he, 
of course, was covered with water. In a 
moment he came spluttering out of it 

Gee whiz, Jim, I stepped in a hole ten 
feet deep." 

Everybody enjoyed these experiences. 

Another trip taken by many was 
down the St. Johns river to its mou^h, 
where was situated Mayport, a straggling 
little fishing village, nestled in the sand. 
The most striking thing about this vil- 
lage was the dilapidation of everything 
in it. Except for the river and the 
island near by, the surroundings had a 
desolate appearance. Local chroniclers 
had it that the island referred to was 
one of the rendezvous of Captain Kidd, 
the notorious pirate of two hundred 
years ago,'who demanded tribute from 


Camp Moved — First Death — Provost Duty — T3^phoId ¥ 
ver — Tribute to the Nurses. 

As hag been said, our firat camp was 
on level ground. This was undesirable 
because there was no natural drainage- 
In the interest of the health of the men 
it was decided to move to a better loca 
tion. This was done on August 18th. 

The new camp was at what was known 
as Panama Park and was about two 
miles farther from the city, being in a 
northeasterly direction from the old 
camp, A turn pike or shell road ran 
along the west side of the camp and the 
ground sloped nicely to the east. On 
this side was heavily timbered bottom 
land. It was about a quarter of a mile 
across this bottom to the St. Johns river. 

At this time there was a good deal of 
sickness in some of the regiments. We 
had begun to think that the 49th would 
be more fortunate as there was not much 
sickness in the regiment during the first 
two months. A number of men were 
sent to the division hospital but not so 
many as from some other regiments. 

Three days after the camp was 

changed, or on August 21st, occured the 
death of First Lieutenant Guy Kellogg; 
company G. He was taken sick in camp 
about ten da>9 before, but was sent to 
the boarding house in the city Arhere his 
wife was staying. This was the first 
death in the regiment. The news was 
received with great sorrow as the lieu 
tenant was one of the most popular as 
well as one of the most efficient young 
oflBcers of the regiment. Being a relative 
of Mrs. Kellogg I was sent for and was 
present when the spirit of the lieutenant 
took its flight. It was a sad hour at the 
undertaking parlors of Clark & Burns, 
where short seryices were held on the 
22nd. Every man of the company pass 
ed through the room and looked for the 
last time upon the face of their loved 
comrade. As I was to accompany Mrs. 
Kellogg and the body of the >oung lieu- 
tenant to Iowa, I bade the boys good 
bye, and as I took each one by the hand 
I could fully understand the feeling of 
great sorro«v that prevailed. 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


A Jacksonville paper tells of the fol- 
lowing incident which was witnessed 
when the funeral procession bearing the 
remains of Lieutenant Kellogg passed by. 
"General J. J. Dickinson, of Ocala 
visiting in the city, saw the procession, 
and kneeling on the sidewalk, offered a 
fervent pra>er to God to save the flag 
and to protect our boys. General Dick- 
inson is well known as one of the bravest 
leaders on the confederate side during 
the civil war, and this simple act brought 
tears to many eyes." 

I arrived in Jacksonville, on my re- 
turn from Iowa, on Sept. 12th, and found 
my company just entered upon a tour of 
provost duty. The company and com- 
pany C of the 6th Missouri were quarter 
ed in the large three story brick building 
one block west of Bridge street. This 
was in the heart of the toughest part of 
what was then the very tough city of 
Jacksonville. During the ten days we 
were there the daily arrests ranged from 
twenty five to seventy. It was part of 
my duty to keep the register in which 
was entered the name, rank, company 
and regiment of each man arrested, and 
last, but not least, the offense with which 
he was charged. 

As a student of human nature and 
human kind I found much to interest 
me. More than half of those arrested 
were guilty only of being without a pass, 
something that every enlisted man was 
supposed to have when absent from 
camp. "Drunt and disorderly" was 
often written opposite the names of men 
belonging to the 4th Immunes, and the 
New Jersey, Alabama and Mississippi 
"Knock-out drops" got in their deadly 

work in many cases. While w^e were 
there a number of men were brought to 
headquarters in an unconscious condi- 
tion. In every case they were found in 
alleys or on side streets with their money 
etc., gone. In nearly every case the vic- 
tims had taken Out one drink, and it 
was always with some chance acquaint- 
ance. One night one of the boys brought 
in a captain of a southern regiment who 
was as drunk as a lord. He was just 
able to realize that he was in a predica- 
ment. He cried like a school boy and 
said that he had made application for a 
commission in the regular army, and that 
with such a serious charge against him 
there would be no hope for appointment. 
His request was not granted. 

In these days we hear much about tha 
water cure as it is administered in the 
Philippines. We had a water cure at 
provost headquarters, but it was admin- 
istered externally. Whenever a '' ad man 
was run in -the kind that wanted to 
fight — his clothing were removed and he 
was chucked into a small closet and 
given a cold shower bath that he would 
not soon forget. If this did not produce 
the desired effect he was then bucked 
and gagged and stored away in a dark 

One day word came to us that a man 
had been killed near our quarters. A 
guard went to the spot and found that a 
negro had been shot by another negro in 
a quarrel over a game of craps. The 
police were already on the ground. The 
murderer was not apprehended and no 
great effort was made to find him. There 
was no sensation over the affair and the 
papers next day contained only a very 
brief account of the shooting. While 


The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

we were at Jacksonville a negro was 
hanged for the murder of a white man 
The next morning the leading daily 
paper had a very short account of the 

Our tour of provost duty ended about 
September 20 Including the time spent 
on provost it had been nearly a month 
since I hiid left the regiment. I found 
a very great change. Many men were in 
the hospital and several had died. For 
some time there averaged one death a 
dav. During the two months following 
the death of Lieutenant Kellogg forty- 
one men died from our regiment. It 
was said that seventeen men were taken 
from the Second division hostital to the 
dead house in one day. In my own 
company, at one time, there was but one 
corporal, of the twelve, able for duty. 
It was no unusual thing for but twelve 
or fifteen men to show up for drill. One 
morning company B had only four men 
for drill. For sometime the entire regi 
ment was consolidated into four com- 
panies for parade, making a total of 
about two hundred men. When the 
corps was reviewed by Secretary of War 
Alger the regiment mustered but three 
hundred, formed into six companies. 

Bad as the situation was it undoubt- 
edly would have been much worse if it 
hadn't been for the rigid enforcement of 
the sanitary regulations. Colonel Dows 
is entitled to great credit for his work in 
this respect. His hobby was sanitation 
and many said that he was a crank on 
this subject. It is certain that had it 
not been for him, and the other officers 
who enforced his orders, the death rate 
would have been two or three times as 
great. Surgeon Major Clark and the 

assistant surgeons, Lieutenants Martin- 
dale and Hamilton, together with the 
hospital stewards and volunteer nurses 
were all hard worked and performed 
splendid service. 

Much praise is due the medical depart- 
ment for the conveniences at the hos- 
pitals, and for the special food furnish- 
ed, and for many other things, but most 
praise should be given to those splendid 
women, the hospital nurses, who unself- 
ishly, devotedly and tenderly cared for 
the boys who succumbed to the dread 
typhoid. Everywhere, whether in our 
own country or on foreign soil, where 
there were military hospitals, weie to be 
found those angels of mercy, silently and 
earnestly soothing the fevered brow, en 
couraging the despondent and coaxing 
the convalescent to sure recovery. I was 
not in any hospital, except as a visitor, 
but my observations, and the informa- 
tion received from the boys who were 
sick, have taught me that the one most 
entitled to credit is the army nurse in 

Even now many eyes are filled with 
tears fresh from hearts saddened by 
thoughts of those for whom taps have 
sounded for the last time on this earth' 
and opposite whose names, on the com- 
pany rolls, have been written these 
words, "Detailed for duty above." In 
Iowa cemeteries are fifty-five members 
of the 49th at rest in the last long 
sleep, all sacrifices to the cause of 
humanly. None of ihese fell in battle' 
nor did they ever hear the singing of 
bullets, except across the rifle range, yet 
they as surely gave their lives for the 
starry banner as if they had fallen in 
the trenches about Santiago. 


Big Storm — The Hoodoo Horse — Work on Rifle Range 
Regiment Moves to Savannah. 

While at the spcood camp we experi- 
enced one of the worst storms ever 
known on the southwest coast. The 
rain fell in torrents most of the time for 
two days and the wind certainly belongr- 
ed in the tornado class. Nearly half of 
the tents in the regiment were blown 
down. At the Second division hospital 
much damaije was done and many pa- 
tients suffered from exposure. Many 
humorous incidents occurred daily, and 
one such incident, happened at one 
o'clock at night during the big storm. 
In some of the regiments it was the cus- 
tom for the sentinels to call the hours. 
I do not know why it wasn't done in the 
49th. Someone suggests that the noise 
would have disturbed the stud-poker 
game that was recognized as the big 
social affair down at the mule corrall. 

However the custom prevailed with 
our neighbors, the 4th Virginia. On the 
night referred to, as I lay in my tent, 
listening to the howling of the wind and 
the beating of the rain, I heard, in clear 

and distinct tonps, these words from the 
camp of the 4th Virginia: 

"Number two, one o'clock, and all s 

Then seemingly a little farther awav 
came these words: 

"Number three, one o'clock, and alls 

Still father away the next man, who 
doubtless appreciated the situation fully, 
took up the cry in these words: 

Number four, one o'clock, and this is 

Every man who served in the 49th 
will remember Lieu'enant Reed, ad- 
jutant 1st battalion, and they will rever 
forget his horse. This horse was even 
more conspicuous than Gen. Lee's mag 
uificent grey charger. Of all the horses 
in the 7th corps the general's was the 
most beautiful, while the lieutenant's 
was the ugliest. He answered to the 
name of Battle-Ax, This name was ap- 
propriate for three reasons. First, be- 
cause he was probably foaled in th" days 


The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

when the battle ax was the main weapon 
used in the wars which then prevailed. 
Second, becnuae it was naturally suited 
to a war steed. Third, becatise to ride 
this horse was as bad a conflict neainst 
a battle-ax in the hands of a valiant foe. 

Battle-ax's color was a dull bav in 
siiots, the other portions of his body be- 
inff a dniler bav. He was a loner, erann*', 
hiingry looking quadruped, with a pair 
of ears that nature had intended should 
adorn that patient and lone suffering 
animal, the armv mule. The ears were 
geared to the horse on the alternating 
plan. One ear wo\ild shoot to the front 
and as it came back the other one would 
advance, and so on until all witnesses 
were hynotised. The everv action of 
these ears was strictiv consistent with 
the drill regulations, the sweep of each 
ear was thirtv inches in its movements, 
the cadence being 120 to the minute. 

On ordinary occasions the ears were 
in repose, but on dress parade thev got 
in their deadly work. There was some- 
thing facinating about those ears that 
riveted the attention of all beholders. 
The long lines of twelve hundred men 
were interesting: the field and staff 
ofiBcers, handsomely uniformed and 
splendidly mounted, were very attrac- 
tive; the band and bugle corps, following 
in the wake of Drum Major Joe Eeis, 
constituted an inspiring sight. But all 
these were completely eclipsed when 
Lieut. Reed, astride Battle- Ax, rode 
across the parade ground and reported 
the First battalion "all present or ac- 
counted for." 

Of course, in the eyes of the field and 
staflf oflBcers, the horse was a disgrace to 
the regiment. The lieutenant was re 

viled. and coaxed, and sworn at, and 
cajoled, and commanded to get rid of 
that "hoodoo of a horse." The lieuten- 
ant tried his best to trade him off but 
without success, until that expert horse 
trader. Chaplain Mason, in the goodness 
of his heart, came to the rescue and 
effected some kind of an exchange that 
gave the lieutenant another horse and 
prevented an epidemic of nervous pro- 
stration among the officers of the regi- 

Since the above was written I have 
been informed by Captain .Jaeggi that I 
am in error regarding reason for the name 
of this celebrated horse. In conformity 
with the claims of a well known tobacco 
company, he was named "Battle-Ax" be- 
cause he was the "biggest plug." 

Before leaving Jacksonville it will be 
proper to say something about the rifle 
range which constituted a prominent 
, feature. There were twentj-four targets, 
so that a whole regiment could fire each 
day, two targets being assigned to each 
company. The iGth made good records 
every time it was out. Capt. E.G.. John- 
son was range officer for sometime, and 
the members of his company, (M), oper- 
ated the targets anc" acted as score keep- 
ers, etc. 

After being at Jacksonville for more 
than four months we left for a new loca- 
lion. It had been known for sometime 
that we would move, but we didn't 
know where until the war department 
saw fit to enlighten us, which was a few 
days before we left. On October 25th, 
we were packed up and about half past 
two o'clock, afternoon, we marched to 
Cummer's saw mill, and in the woods 
near by we waited in the rain until about 





The Story of The Fori \ -ninth. 

nine o'clock. Allhouf?h we had our 
ponchos and rubber coats there was not 
much comfort to be enjoyed in this ex- 
perience, although we built roaring fires 
When wt boarded the train everyone 
was wet to the skin. 

Early next mo'-ninK we waked up to 
find the train standing on the track in 
the midst of a forlorn pine forest. I ao 
not remember just what was the reason 
for ihe delay. I think, however, that 
the engine had balked. 

A short distance from the train was a 
small village, consisting of a dozen 
houses built of rough pine boards 
Thinking that I might get something to 
eat and maybe a cup of hot coffee I 
speedily made my way to the only store^ 
where I found the proprietor, a real 
Georgia cracker, just opening up. See 
ing that the establishment could not be 
rated with Delmonico's, I ask d if he 
could supply me with cheese, crackers 
and bologna. Answering me he said: 
"Well sah, I haint got no bolony and 
never hed. 1 know what it is. Got a 
hunk once when 1 was up toe Savannah. 
Hit may be all right fur them as is used 
to high livin'. I am jest out of cheese — 
sold the las' piece toe a drummer las' 
week. You all caint 'spect to git coffee 
here, but I kin fix you all out with 
crackers and whisky." 

I took crackers and reasoned thus re- 
garding the other commodity: I was 

wet and cold, and, uiidfratandii;g that 
whisky was stimulating, I decided that I 
could no •' kill two birds with one stone 
— get stimulated and at the same time 
learn what whisky tasted like. 

Although it was out one hundred and 
thirty nine miles from .Jacksonville to 
Savannah it was noon of the 26ih before 
we arrived at the last named city As 
soon as we got off the cars we had our 
dinner of hardtack and beans We then 
marched to our new camp ground south- 
east of the city. We found a much bet- 
ter camping place than we ever had be- 
fore The location was high and the 
soil was much better — not so sandy as 
at Jacksonville. Only two hundred 
yards away was an electric car line. For 
obvious reasons this was nice. 

Soon after arriving on the ground 
wagons appeared with the tentage. This 
included new 7x7 tents for every com- 
pany. We were glad of this for the 
rags which had constituted the tentage 
at Jacksonville had long since survived 
their usefulness. The "^ents were soon 
put up and we again commenced house- 

The first night in the new camp was a 
cold one. In fact it was plain that we 
were rid of the hot weather which had 
been almost unbearable at Jacksonville. 
We hailed the cool weather with delight, 
for it meant the end of so much sick- 


Camp Onward — The City — Foot Ball — New Rifles— Move- 
ment of Troops to Cuba Begins. 

Our new camp at Savannah did not 
receive a name until November lOth, 
when Gen. Lee issued orders announcing 
that it would be called "Camp Onward.' 
This we understood was because we were 
supposed to have begun our onward 
march to Cuba. 

Savannah is an interesting city. Here 
I believe, was made the first settlement 
south of Virginia. General James 
Oglethrope was its founder and a hand 
some monument, intended to perpetuate 
his memory, graces one of the numerous 
little parks. These little parks, or 
"breathing places," as the natives call 
them, are located at the intersection of 
many of the streets. They are called 
wards, and named after persons. To 
illustrate, one was called "Crawford's 
Ward," and probably one or two, and 
possibly more, men will remember that 
it required a special pass, signed by 
Major Harrison, provost marshal, in 
order to visit it. 

Among the monuments erected to the 

memory of Revolutionary heroes are those 
of Sergeant Jasper, Count Pulaski and 
General Greene. 

The shipping at Savannah is much 
larger than at Jacksonville. At the lat- 
ter place the principal cargoes for ship- 
ment were lumber, while at Savannah it 
was cotton. Large amounts of turpen- 
tine and rosin are also shipped. 

Our first pay day after arriving at 
Camp Onward was about Nov. 5th. Of 
course there were and unusally large 
number of requests for passes that night. 
For some reason, probably in the inter- 
est of discipline, the number approved 
by the adjutant were limited to ten to 
each company. Straightway there were 
numerous kicks made in the company 
streets. The boys, who had been broke, 
wanted to spend some of the money they 
had that day received from the paymas- 
ter. The failure to get passes didn't 
deter them, but they went anyhow. Had 
one been in the rear of the camp he 
would have seen whole squads of men 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


walking through the guard line. They 
paid no attention to the challenges of 
the guards. They came back into the 
camp in the same manner and were very 
quiet about it. Probably this is the 
reason that nothing was ever done about 
it. There must have been two hundred 
men who ran the guard lines on this 

The weHther became quite cold while 
we were here and the boys made their 
quarters quite comfortable by the use 
of little oil stoves. Many of them bought 
pancake flour, eggs, milk and other ar- 
ticles of food and did their own cooking. 

Thankdgiving Day, 1898, will long be 
remembered by all who served in the 7th 
corps. Then it was that the ladies of 
Savannah successfully carried out the 
undertaking of giving a good Thanks- 
giving dinner to every man of the twelve 
thousand then in Camp Onward. This 
dinner was served about four o'clock by 
the ladies themselves. This kindly at- 
tention on the part of the good people of 
Savannah completely won our hearts 
and now, four years afterwards, we still 
sing their praises. 

Our regimental foot-ball team played 
its flrpt game on this day. The contest 
was with the First Texas and resulted 
in a tie, the score being five to five. Be- 
fore leaving Catrp Onward these two 
teams played another game, the score 
being eight to nothing in favor of the 

Two and a half miles from our camp 
is located Ft. Jackson, on the south 
shore of the Savannah and not far below 
the city. It is an old brick structure 
and has not been occupied since the 
civil war. No doubt at one time it 

served its purpose admirably, but against 
modern guns it would not be worth a 
plugged quarter. 

One point of interest was Thunder- 
bolt, a small town, distant about three 
miles from camp, and accessible by elec- 
tric car line. Near here is located an in- 
dustrial school for colored people. The 
town is located on the Thunderbolt river, 
from which the negroes take large quan- 
tities of ojsters. 

On November 25th, occured the sham 
battle with the 1st brigade, of the 2nd 
division intrenched in the earthworks 
which had been erected by the confed- 
erates in 1864 while Gen. Sherman was 
making his celebrated march to the sea 
The 2nd brigade, of which the 49th waa 
a part, was the attacking force. History 
fails to record the result of this blood- 
less battle, but I now remember it 
we were repulsed. The getting licked 
didn't worry our side so much as the 
mud and water which had to be waded 
in order to get at the enemy. 

On November 30th the old Springfield 
rifles were turned in and new Krags 
were issued intsead. As the Krag is the 
rifle used by the army a few facts con 
cerning it may_b9 of interest. 

Used as a single loader 42 shots have- 
been fired in two minutes. Firing from 
hip, without aim, 36 shots have been 
fired in one minute. Penetration into 
white pine; from muzzle 53 inches; from 
distance of five hundred yards, 19 85 
inches; from one thousand yards, 11 44. 
Weight of the gun 10.174 pounds. 

To give an idea of our life I give a few 
extracts from a diary now before me: 

"Dec. 1. News that the Second Divi- 
sion has been ordered to Cuba. At news 

The Story of The Fortv-ninth. 


of moving to Cuba the boye shouted 
much Breakfast: hash bread and 
coffee. Dinner: I'eefpteak, rotatcep, to 
matoes. Warm biscuit for supper. A 
rice day " 

"Dec. 2nd. S -hoo) in taking new guns 
apart. News of g^oing to Cuba confirm- 
ed. Had orders to take all badges from 
coat or shirt and to wear no ornaments. 
Nice day." 

"Dec. 3rd. Our last review to be 
Tbursda\. A few bets up that wa will 
be in Cuba bv Christmas " 

'Dec. 4th This is Sunday. Went 
to the ci'-y and spent greater part of the 
afternoon on the wharf. Saw acres of 
baled cotton and miles of ships from 
all countries. The Minnewaska was 
loading 202nd New York " 

"Dec. 5th. Drill in forenoon. Head- 
quarters pulling up stakes for depar- 
ture to Cuba (?) No special news as to 
departure of the regiment — only rumors. 
Very coid this morning. Boys ate break- 
fast with gloves or mittens and over 
coats. Good grub today." 

Dec 6th. Cold morning. Review and 
parade of entire corps in the city. This 
is also pay day. Peddlers are swarming 
through the camp." 

"Dec. 7th. North Carolina regiment 
boards transport for Cuba. Fourteen 
men reported absent from parade. A 
very nice day; temperature at 7 a. m., 

"Dec 8t,h. No school or parade be- 

cause of show at Thunderbolt for offi- 
cers. Temperature nine a. m. 37; three 
p. m. 47." 

"Dec. 9Lh. Because of a little snow 
and more rain everything is declared off 
except roll calls and guard mount." 

This is enough to show how the days 
passed. It will be noticed that prepara- 
tions were rapidly being made for the 
mo\e to Cuba. On Sunday, the 11th, 
General Lee and his staff went on bonrd 
the transport Panama and left amid the 
cheers of a great multitude of people 
who lined the wharf. 

Some troops had preceded Gen. Lee. 
The first to leave were the First North 
Carolina, followed in a few days by the 
Secona Illinois. 

The Fourth Virginia left their camp 
on the 15th for the transport which was 
to carr} them to Cuba. They were ac- 
companied on the transport by the 16l9t 
Indiana. The Virginians were anxious 
to have the 49lh go with them and some 
of them were so much disappointed that 
they threatened to throw the Hoosiers 
overboard when they got out to sea. 

President McKinley visited Savannah 
on the 17th accompanied by several 
members of his cabinet and by Generals 
Lawton and Wheeler. Of course there 
was a review of all the troops then 
camped in or near Savannah. This re- 
view was the last one for us while at 
Camp Onward as we left for Cuba on 
the 19th. 


On Board Transport— Havana Harbor— First Impressions 
of Cuba — Our Reception. 

Oq Friday, December 16th, we got 
orders to pack all extra baggage acd be 
prepared to load it on a transport at any 
moment. By Saturday evening it was 
all ready. Sunday morning about seven- 
ty-five array wagons appeared and then 
there was a great bustle in camp. A 
stranger might have thought that every- 
thing was in confusion. He would have 
been mistaken In a short time everything 
was loaded and at the wharf and by one 
o'clock all was loaded except the men 
and the things that each one carried. 
We were to go on board Monday morn- 
ing. The boys celebrated their depar- 
ture by bonfires. 

Secretary of Agriculture James Wil- 
son, who had accompanied President 
McKinley on his southern trip, visited 
our camp on Sunday. He greeted the 
boys cordially, and all were glad to see 

Next morning, December 19th, reveille 
sounded at about five o'clock. At 7:30 
the regiment started for the wharf 
After waiting nearby for sometime we 

went on board at eleven. The Minne- 
waska was the name of our transport. 
It was a "sizable" boat, being 46i feet 
long, .50 feet wide and nearly 60 feet from 
keel to the top of quarter deck. When 
we went over the bar at the mouth of 
the Savannah river she drew 21 feet, but 
after getting to sea she was sunk four 
feet more by filling compartments with 

The ship left her dock at noon. Two 
tugs towed us to the mouth of the river, 
a distance of about twenty miles. A 
number of ladies, wives of officers, ac- 
companied us until we had crossed the 
bar, when they returned on one of the 

The enlisted men were located on the 
second floor below the main deck. The 
first floor below was occupied by the 
mules and horses. Our quarters were 
nothing like I supposed they would be. 
Imagine a great big cellar about eight 
feet deep with an iron floor. Prom side 
to side were rows of 4x4 posts twenty- 
two inches apart. These rows of posts 


The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

were about twelve feet apart. One end 
of two hammocks (one about three feet 
above the other) was attached to each 
post, the other end being attached to a 
post in the next row. Thus two men 
had a space 22 inches by 12 feet. The 
most objectionable thing about these 
quarters was water whicd collected on 
the iron floor. 

The cooking for the one thousand men 
on board was done bv steam in big iron 
kettles on the main deck, just back of 
the principal hatchway. The whole reg- 
iment had to file by this place to get 
grub. Naturally it took a long time to 
serve everjbndy. 

The officers were nicely quartered. In 
this respect they were much better situ- 
ated than when in camp. 

Everyone spent most of his time on 
the upper deck, looking at the ever 
changine sea, but never changing scene, 
excepting now and then when a school 
of porpoise could be seen. The water 
was a deep blue, except the crest of the 
waves, where were to be found the 
famed white caps. The sailors said we 
were hsving very smooth water and fine 
weather, Jbut to a landlubber it seemed 
we had a pretty stiff breeze from the 
south. The boys had to keep their hats 
tied on with strings. 

Of course the novelty of our surround- 
ings had not paled when night came on. 
On this first day it was quite cool and 
we wore our overcoats. Most of us were 
up next morning to see a sunrise at sea. 
I had read many fine descriptions of this 
magnificent scene but I am not able to 
do the subject justice. I can only say 
;hat when Old Sol made his appearance 
he was there and didn't loiter on the way. 

1 will not attempt to describe it but will 
refer all who care to investigate the sub- 
ject to the works of the many poets who 
have treated the subject. 

Seasickness was enjoxed by all who 
were not affected with it. Those who 
had it failed to see the joke. 

After leaving the mouth of the Savan- 
nah river we were out of land until about 
noon next dav. From this time on we 
were in sight of the Florida coast all day. 
It became quite warm on this day and 
overcoats were discarded. The evening 
was pleasant and nearly everyone re- 
mained on deck until a late hour. 

The weather grew very much warmer 
on the 21st and much interest was shown 
when it became known that we would 
reach Havana this evening. About 4:30 
o'clock the Cuban coast hove in sight. 
A number with phenomenal eyesight and 
vivid imaginations claimed they could 
see monkeys in cocoanut trees throwing 
nuts at natives. About 6:30 the revolv- 
ing light on Morro Castle could be seen. 
We entered the harbor between eight 
and nine o'clock and anchored in the 
bay shortly afterwards. As we passed 
Morro we could see many persons on the 
walls and could hear cheers, or what 
seemed to be cheers, for the Spanish 
language was used. We also passed a 
large ship and their band played "Yankee 
Doodle," which was vociferously ap 
plauded by our boys. Although the 
moon was shining it was too dark to 
distinguish objects on the shore. 

It was understood that we were anch 
ored near the wreck of the 
Every man was on deck at daylight. 
What was left of the Maine above water 
was gazed at with great interest by every 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


man of the 49th. 

On all sides wonderful scenes were 
realized. The forts looked verv strong. 
To the south were hills that were green 
with grass. The stars and stripes were 
waving over Port Atores, at the end of 
the bay. 

Soon after breakfast we proceeded to 
the do:!k. A good many Cubans were 
about the ship offering cigars and or- 
anges for sale. A brisk trade was im- 
mediately established, but was soon cut 
off by the officers of the regiment, who 
seemed to think that somebody would 
be poisoned. 

The mules and horses were first un- 
loaded, after which each company quar- 
termaster sergeant was furnished a de- 
tail of ten men form his company to as- 
sist in moving t&e baggage out and load- 
ing it on wagons to be taken to camp, 
which was about nine miles distant from 
the bay. The regiment, except guard 
and baggage details, stayed on board all 
day Thursday night, and went out to 
camp Friday morning. 

Being one of the quartermaster ser- 
geants I was required to stay on the 
wnarf until Saturday night, and in this 
way I met a good many Cubans and 
Spaniards. The Spanish soldiers were 
very friendly, and gave many of the boys 
buttons and ornaments from their uni- 
forms. They examined our Krag rifleS' 
which are not much different from their 
Mousers, except that the latter are very 
dirty and would cause an American in- 
specting officer to have a fit. 

The Spanish soldier is undersized and 
anything but soldierly in appearance. 
Their uniform was a wide brimmed 
straw hat, blouse and trousers of some 

material very similar togineham. Some 
of them wore shoes made of soft white 
canvas and with hemp soles. As it was 
quite cold (for Georgia) when wo left 
Savannah, we wore our heavy blue cloth- 
ing. These were examined with interest, 
and raanv exclamations b\ both Cubans 
and Spaniards. The Spanish soldiers 
were all very friendly and man} of them 
envied our lot. One of them, who was 
only seventeen years old, and had been 
in the army three Aears, said that he 
would not go back to Spain, but would 
go to the United States. He was very 
small, weighing not more than one hun- 
dred pounds, but was exceptionally 
soldierly in appearance, for a Spaniard, 
and very bright. He showed me scars 
of two wounds that he bad received in 
battle, and he wore a gold bidge given 
him for special act of bravery. He bad 
been a bugler but when we saw him he 
was a sergeant of cavalry. 

The Cubans frantically received us as 
if we were their saviors. When the reg- 
iment marched through the city it was 
greetec" with loud shouts of "Vive la 
Americanos," and bouquets were thrown 
at the flag. The buildings were decorat- 
ed with both American and Cuban flags, 
the former being given the place of 

Everything interested us greatly, and 
especially the buildings. They are mas- 
sive stone structures, mostly two stories 
in height, cemented on the outside, and 
with no ornamentations. The doors 
were heavy and wide. Eyery window 
had iron grates but no glass — only wood- 
en shutters. The shutters were nearly 
always open and one could see clear 
through the house to the court beyond. 


The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

This court beloDged to every dwelling, 
and was doubtless a very pleasant place, 
being filled with flowers, plants, and 
banana and orange trees. There is not 
a carpet in Havana and but few rugs. 
The floors, in the ' -etter class houses, are 
of tile, in pretty designs. Among th^ 
poorer classbs the floors are of rough 
stone and some times only dirt. Most of 
the streets are very narrow, and in such 
streets the sidewalks are sometimes not 
more than eighteen inches wide. In the 
newer portion of the city, back from 
the bay, the streets and sidewalks were 
wider. The streets were very dirty as 
compared with those of our cities. I 
said then that the man who would turn 
a big hose on the whole city would ever 
after be hailed as a public benefactor. 

Early Saturday morning two of us 
went up town to get something to eat- 
We entered a cafe and sat down at a 
table and wondered how we could give 
an order, since we knew no Spanish and 
the waiters evidently knew no English. 
Directly a waiter came and said "caufa 
meelka." I sagely nodded but could not 
even guess what he meant. He soon 
returned with a beer glass on a saucer 
for e >ch of us. These he filled to within 
an inch of the top with hot milk. Then, 
from a metal kettle, he poured enough 
of a black liquid to completely fill the 
glasses. It was coffee and the best I 
had ever drank. In every cafe were 
men drinking coffee, but not eating any- 
thing except sometimes a small roll. 



,^>t. ^.f:V^> v%i.V 








A Fatal Accident— A Cuban Scrap — The Hoys Skip out- 
Cuban Funerals — Christmas Eve, 

A very distressing accident occured on 
the first morning after we arrived in 
Havana harbor. It was not >-et da3'- 
iight when breakfast was ready. As 
soon as each fellow got his grub he 
w^ould either go down to his quarters or 
would seek a place on the upper deck to 
eat his morning meal, Hearj Becker, 
a member of Co. A, stepped into an open 
hatchway and fell to the bottom, a dis- 
tance of thirty feet, striking on the iron 
floor. Although I helped take him out 
I never knew what his injuries were 
He was taken to the hospital ship Mis- 
souri, which happened to be there, and 
in a few days he died. 

Like every other man in the ■i9th he 
was anxious to see Cuba, its people and 
institutions. The goal was reached 
early in the night but ere the light of 
day came he had met his fate, and he 
never opened his eyes in consciousness 
on the sights he longed for, 

A large number of Cuban stevedores 
were employed on the wharf to handle 

the baggage and supplies. It was great 
fun to watch them. A very 

excitable people, are the Cubans. They 
were generally dressed in a pair of light 
cotton trousers, a thin shirt, canvass 
shoes and no socks, and for the most part 
without hats. There were a large num- 
ber of small cars loaded with supplies, 
the motive power of each being three 
or four Cubans. Whenever there was a 
collision, which was frequent, every last 
Cuban would stop work, throw his hands 
in the air and all v/ould talk at once. 
One would think there was going to be 
a big fight in about a minute. However 
the scrap always blew over without 

The officers of the regiment did not 
want the boys to go into the city. There 
were two gates that furnished entrance 
from the wharf into the city. These 
were guarded and it would seem that no 
•ne could get through. Before night a 
number had been through and seen some 
of the sights. One of these was out of 


The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

tobacco and commenced a search for the 
much desired "chewin." After a long 
search he returned with a piece of 
alleged tobacco that looked like a chunk 
of black asphalt. He went to a number 
of stores and asked for tobacco. The 
clerks always produced some cigars. He 
said that he couldn't make anyone un- 
derstand him. Directly he saw a negro, 
and thinking that his troubles were over 
he accosted the colored brother with 
"say! can you tell me where I can find 
some plug chewing?" The intelligent 
son of Ham threw his arms around in 
the air and said, "Me no comprehenda." 
"What do you think of such a durn 
country, Jim," said my blue shirted 
friend, "where even the niggers can't 
talk United States." 

The regiment left the ship for camp 
at nine o'clock Friday morning, Dec, 
22nd, leaving the baggage and guard de- 
tails behind. The baggage of each com- 
pany had been placed in piles on the 
big covered wharf' A large number of 
teams appeared early in the morning and 
were loaded with the baggage and sup- 
plies and started out to Camp Columbia, 
which was to be our home for nearly 
four months. 

After the wagons had been loaded we 
had a long wait until their return from 
camp, I put in part of this time in 
making short excursions into the city. 
Street peddlers were numerous and were 
selling bread, vegetables, notions, rib 
bona, (which were allowed to hang out 
from the pack) and other articles. The 
dickering was always done at the win- 
dows, the peddler without and the ladies 
within examining the wares through 
the bars of the windows. 

I was alo"e and attracted a good deal 
of attention, as American soldiers were 
new to the people. They were very po- 
lite and seemed pleased that the Ara'^ri- 
can soldiers had come. At one doorway 
were a number of children, .lust as I 
passed them some word in English was 
spoken that attracted my attention. I 
turned back and found that they had 
sheets of paper on which were written 
words in Spanish translated into Eng- 
lish. They were studying English and 
v/ere making good progress. 

It was on this day that a sight was 
witnessed that would have drawn a 
large crowd of people had it occured in 
any Iowa town. There it attracted very 
little attention. An old woman had 
died on the street, more than likely of 
starvation. When the boys came along 
a priest was there. The body of the 
poor woman was laid out on the street. 
The candles were burning and the 
funeral rites were being said over the 

When night came about half the goods 
had been sent out to camp. The boys 
all wanted to go up into the city. 
Sergeant Weingartl, of Co. C, Sergeant 
Churchill, of Co. D, and myself appoint- 
ed ourselves a committee to ask permis- 
sion of Col. Ham, who was in command 
of the whole detail. He told us that it 
would be impossible as the orders were 
that not even the officers would be al- 
lowed to go. We returned to that part 
of the wharf where we were quartered 
and found that nearly every one of the 
guard and baggage details had disap- 

It did not take us long to discover 
where they had gone. During the day 

The Story of 'Hie Forty-ninth, 


soldiers were allowed to pass in and out 
at will. Experience had taught the boys 
that new orders would be given when 
the guard was changed at six o'clock. 
Therefore while the highly respected 
committeemen were interviewing Col. 
Ham the other fellows, to the nuiaber of 
a hundred more or less, quietly and 

effectually vamoused. We discovered 
all this too late, for six o'clock had come 
and the guard was changed and had re- 
ceived the new orders. 

Most of the men had returned by nine 
o'clock. The rest straggled in from that 
time until midnight. One party had 
struck up an acquaintance with some 
Spanish soldiers who were off duty 
They pronounced the Spaniards fine fel 

On the morning of Saturday, the 24th, 
the wagons were on hand early. The 
day was much like the preceding one. 

About four o'clock I left on one of the 
wagons for camp. We had to pass 
through the city from east to west. Af- 
ter we had passed through the old part 
of the city, and reached the newer por- 
tion, we found the streets much wider 
and the buildings much better. When 
we had gotten into the western suburbs, 
beyond the influence of the Sbanish pro- 

vost guards, we saw many Cuban fl^g^^ 
together with the stars and stripes. 
The people were enthusiastic and seemed 
gloriously happy because the American 
soldiers had come and would soon take 
the place of the Spanish troops. 

On every side were interesting sight?. 
We met two funeral processions,. The 
tirst was while wc were still in the 
city. It consisted onlv of a hearse to 
which were hitched four finely harnessed 
horses The driver was dressed in a 
flashy uniform and wore a three corner- 
ed hat. The undertaker, who sat on the 
seat with the driver, wore a similar uni- 
form as to cut and shape, but it had no 
bright colors, all a somber black. The 
second funeral party was seen in one of 
the outer suburbs, and consisted of ten 
or twelve men, all on foot. The coffin 
was being carried on the shoulders of 
six of the men. The manner of dispos- 
ing of the dead, in Cuba, w ill be ex- 
plained in a future chapter. 

I arrived in camp in time for 
supper. This being Christmas eve the 
boys indulged in much conjecture as to 
whether Santa Claus would visit our 
camp. A good manv socks, such as 
Uncle Sam furnished at six cents a pair, 
were hung up. 


.e-^qhle b 

a.4sJ ftrtog 
SdT ..Buoi- 

Oil bfid 3j j;.-! 
etiT .xould 

ayS 1o b^jfejfeo ■ 

io a-obiuori.K 

.VA -.if] Hi ^^ ,5,. 

tiio aJHiv biuov; 
,-iJsq 8 aineo xife 


Christmas—Reo-iment Goes Swimming— We Have A Fine 
Camp — Graybacks — Appear. 

The bugles wakened ua Cbristmaa 
morning. Santa Claua had failed to 
visit the camp. A good many reasons 
were given for his non appearance. Some 
said that the reindeer couldn't stand the 
climate. Others claimed that Santa 
only remembered good boys, and there 
were none in Cuba, aside from ourselves, 
and that he had not received notice of 
our departure from God's country. There 
were many reasons why it seemed un- 
like Christmas. There were no ill en- 
crusted tree branches, no snow on the 
ground and consequently no pretty girls 
wondering if Charley would show up 
with a horse and cutter. The weather 
was as warm as a July day. Everybody 
was in their shirt sleeves. 

Not only was it Christmas but i was 
also Sunday. Morning services were 
held in front of headquarters. Chaplain 
Mason preached an eloquent sermon, 
the text being "The Star in the East. 
Peace on earth, good will to men." 

On our right, this is to the northeast, 
were camped our old friends of the 4th 
Virginia. On the other side of our camp 
was a vacant piece of ground on which 

the 6th Missouri afterwards encamped- 
Just beyond was the town of Quemodos. 
Marianes was a short distance beyond 
Quemodos. In fact the two towns were 
practically one. 

After dinner it was announced that 
the regiment would go to the beach for 
a swim. The opportunity for going 
swimming on Christmas day was too 
good for Hawkeyes to miss, besides a 
bath was badly needed. The sea was in 
plain sight of camp and seemed about a 
mile and a half distant. Soon the regi- 
ment was formed, everyone with his 
Krag rifle and twenty-five rounds of 
ammunition. With Major Clapp in 
command we started. 

When we arrived at the beach we 
found a village inhabited by two or three 
hundred Cubans. A little bay here 
furnished a harbor for fishing smacks 
and other small vef sels. Very soon after 
arriving the boys of the 49th were hav- 
ing a bully good time splashing about 
in "Old Ocean." 

When I had got my fill of swim I put 
on my clothes, and taking my gun, I 
went to the village where I found a 


The Story of The Fortv-ninth, 

mercaQtile establishment, which a 
double conceotrated optimist raight 
have been excused for calling a grocery 
store. In this store was a barrell con- 
spicuously labeled "Vino." In United 
States talk this meant wine. What was 
inort appropriate than that I should 
mark the experiences of the day by tak- 
ing a small glass of wine? So producing 
a nickel 1 beckoned to the half naked 
clerk, and, in what had to go for Spanish 
said "Vino, cinco centavo, Americano 
monee." 1 really wanted to invest a 
dime but not knowing Spanish for ten I 
was compelled to content m; self with 
what I feared would be half rations. 
But when a large goblet, holding not 
less than a pint, was handed to me, I 
folt that this was surely the land where 
milk and honey and such like abounded. 
I took a big swallow and discovered that 
it was about the sourest and most bitter 
substance that ever found its way to my 
interior anatomy. 

The name of this village is Playa. In 
pronouncing the name you should bear 
down on the middle letter and make it 
good and broad. In the upper end of 
the town is an ancient looking structure 
built of stone. It is round and sixteen 
to eighteen feei in diameter and about 
twenty feet high. In early times it 
served the double purpose of a block 
house and a lighthouse. At night a fire 
would be built on its top, where it served 
a star of hope to the weary mariner. I 
think I am justified in saying he was 
weary, when 1 remember that all the 
natives of the island seemed to be suffer- 
ing from that tired feeling." 

Near the stone tower, half buried in 
the sand and fast rusting into nothing- 

ness is an old cannon, that may hare 
done service two hundred years ago, 

A nondescript railway runs from 
Playa, via Quemodos and Marianeo to 
Havana. There were quite a number of 
fair residences in the village, and before 
the war it was quite a pleasure resort. 
In the little bay is an old wreck. One 
day I swam out to it. Very little of it 
remains but the iron work. 

Many of the boys slipped away from 
their companies and soon there were 
many stras^glers to be rounded up. 
Major Clapp kept his horse pretty much 
on the jump getting the boys into their 
proper places in line. We arrived in 
camp just about supper time when the 
eagle eyes of the top sergeants soon as- 
certained that all were present. There- 
fore the Major was able to retire to the 
solitude of his couch full of the concious- 
ness that none of his soldier boys had 
been kidnapped, or poisoned or other- 
wise ill used by any lurking enemy, 
while the good little soldier boys them- 
selves were all safely tucked away in bed 
by the non-coms and sound asleep ere 
the bugles had sounded their mournful 
taps. Across the angelic features of the 
sleepers played smiles that told of happy 
dreams of another land where Santa 
Claus never failed to visit on Christmas, 

The first day after Christmas it rained 
all day and everybody, except guard and 
fatigue details, had to stay in their 
tents* During the time before New 
Year's no passes were issued. 

We had six different permanent camps 
during our term of service. This, which 
was known as Camp Columbia, was by 
all odds the best of the six. The only 
drawback was in the soil. It was a vel- 

Tlie Story of J he Forty-ninth. 


low clav, and after a rain it would stick 
to the feet very badly. The tents wore 
all new, and were of the kind known as 
hospital, with high walls. We also had 
good folding cots issued to us. After ^9 
had put in floors we were nicely fixed. 

The only fences to be seen wure of 
stone. They were substantially built 
and would have made a splen- 
did protection in case of a scrap. 

There is no better water to be found 
any where than in this part of Cuba. At 
first we had some difficulty in getting it 
as it had to be hauled. Afterwards it 
was piped to us. 

We also had difficulty in getting fuel. 
A diary before me mentions that on the 
28th we had to eat hardtack and canned 
corned beef for supper because there 
was no wood to cook with. The only 
fuel we ever got was shipped on the 
railroad, and was poor staff. 

Everyone was anxious to get mnil. A 
few letters came on the 26th. It was 
sometime before mail began to arrive 
with any regularity. A military post- 
office had to be established and a force 
organized to handle the large mails as 
they arrived from the states. 

My diary of December .30th mentions 
that graybacks are in the company. 
This was not the first time that these 
pests had made their appearance in our 
camp. The first time that the insects 
showed up was soon after we went into 
camp at Jacksonville. Company G was 
invaded by the vermin before Company 
D was. Shortly afterwards there was 
some bantering being indulged in be- 
tween members of these two companies. 
They guyed each other unmercifully. 
Directly someone asked, "What's Ggot?" 

A number of voices in D company 
answered, 'G's got graybacks." Prompt- 
ly came back from G, "You bet we have, 
and we are proud of it. That makes us 
veterans." I have heard many old sol- 
diers say that it was impossible to get rid 
of graybacks. That was not our exper- 
ience. Clothing infested with them if 
boiled in salt water always did the busi- 
ness. Of course there would be a man 
now and then who made no effort to get 
rid of them. There was one such in our 
company whose clothing was fairly alive 
with them. We will call him Smith be- 
cause there was no man of that name in 
the company. Some of the boys said 
that these particular graybacks were 
well raised and that they wore splendidly 
trained in military drill, and always exe- 
cuted the movements on the back of 
Smith's blue army shirt. One very 
truthful lad said he once witnessed a 
review by a big buck grayback tha*^ had 
horns. He said that as the companies 
marched by they put up a better "front" 
than the North Caroleenians could have 
done. One day when the company was 
resting from a drill, in the shade of a 
tree, one fellow observed Smith digging 
away down the back of his neck under 
his shirt collar, and ejaculated: "Gee 
whiz! Smith, why don't you get a 

In the diary I find a memorandum of 
some of the prices that prevailed when 
we first landed. They are as follows: 
eggs, 10 cents each; butter, SI 85 cents 
per pound; turkeys $8.00 each; kerosene, 
$1.00 per gallon; oranges, American mon- 
ey, five for 5 cents, and in Spanish mon- 
ey, three for 5 cents. 


When the Spanish Flag Was Lowered — A Visit to the City 
And the Stranofe Siefhts. 

January 1, 1899, was the day on which 
the Spanish authorities were to transfer 
the reins of government to the Ameri- 
cans. It was arranged that there should 
be a big parade. On Saturday night, 
Dec. 31st, forty five rounds of ammuni- 
tion were issued to each man. The 
orders directed that each man should 
carry his rifle, canteen filled with coftee, 
and haversack with one ration. The 
uniform campaign hats, blue shirts, 
khaaki trousers and leggins. We left 
camp about 7:30 o'clock on the morning 
of Jan. 1st. Much of the distance was 
over a rough by-road, which took our 
brigade to the north side of the city, and 
to a point directly across the neck of 
the bay from Morro Castle, All along 
the water front here are heavy fortifica- 
tions. After resting nearly an hour we 
entered the city. It is impossible for 
me to describe the scenes wh ch we wit- 
nessed. When I say to you that you 
may put together all the Fourth of July 
celebrations you ever saw, and then add 

all the political rallys of a life ^-ime. 
When you have done this you will only 
have a very small side show compared 
to what we saw. Flags, both United 
States and Cuban, waved everywhere, 
and the people cheered constantly. Very 
often the words were in English, which 
the people seemed to have learned for 
the occasion. "Hurrah for America 
flag," was most often heard. It was my 
fortune to be chief of the platoon (we 
were marching in column of platoons) 
to which the color guard of the 49ch was 
attached. When the colors appeared 
the people seemed to go crazy. I saw 
old men and women who had suffered 
many cruelties inflicted by Spain, with 
tears of joy coursing down their cheeks. 
We marched fully twenty miles, fifteen 
of which was through streets lined with 
people, snd there was the same noise and 
hurrah, the whole distance. Did we 
answer their cheers? You who were not 
there should have heard us. One fellow, 
who had a voice that caused angels to 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


wepp and strong men to swear, was 
hoarse for a week afterwards. We 
wished that all of Iowa could have been 
with us. It was worth the long march 
and a good share of the hardships we 
bad indured. 

There were lots of prettv girls, and 
there would have been more if so many 
of them did not powder their faces so 
much. Whenever a bevy of these girls 
were to be sean the boys would give 
three cheers and a tiger. It was the 
tiger ihat caujiht them. They had never 
heard anything like it. 

This was th:* first occasion on which 
we had seen Gen. Lee since we had been 
in Cuba. It must have been a proud 
day for him, for it will be remembered 
that one year before, when he left 
Havana, where ho had been Consul 
General, he promised to come back with 
an army. 

When we got back to camp we were 
all very tired It had been a great day, 
although 1 am afraid some of the boys 
did not fully appreciate its full signifi- 
cance. There were always a great many 
of the boys who simply couldn't see the 
serious side of army life. If they did 
see it they refused to let it influence 
them very much. It is better so. The 
fellows who were full of life, as a rule, 
failed to get sick. Other men who put 
in a portion of their time worrying saw 
more or less service iu the hospitals. 

During the two days following the 
ceremony on the 1st, it rained. On the 
fourth it was clear and most of the 
time was put in building floors for our 
tents. The paymaster also appeared 
and payed off the regiment. 

After -January 1st, a limited number 
of men from each company were allowed 
to go to the city in charge of an officer. 
On the first Sunday following th^ big 
parade, Lieut. Crawford chaperoned six 
enlisted- men, of which the writer was 
one. As early as possible we proceeded 
to the depot at Quaraodos, near our 
camp, where the lieutenant politely in- 
formeu the ticket agent that we wanted 
tickets to Havana. The agent fired back 
a lot of Spanish talk, all the time waving 
his arms iu the air. This is character- 
istic, of all Spaniards and Cubans. 

Tie their hands behind them and they 
Tjre as dumb as an oyster. After much 
difficulty we learned that the fare was 
thirty cents in Spanish money, or twen- 
ty three cents in United States currency 
for the round trip. We boarded the 
cars and were soon under way to the 
city. The train was made up of first, 
second and third class cars. The first 
class were a little more comfortable than 
a freight car caboose in this country. 
The third class have plain board seats 
without backs. The coaches are built 
on the same plan as the passenger 
coaches of this country, but are dilapi- 
dated affairs. 

When we arri\ed in the city we found 
that we must walk a distance of a mile 
or two before we were in the business 
center. We might have rode in their 
street cars, but one look at those back 
numbers satisfied us that walking was 
to be preferred. The street cars are not 
exactly patatial in their furnishings. 
Mules furnished the motive power. So 
we walked. We soon learned that we 
had done the right thing, for on every 
side was something new. The people. 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


the buildings, and every thing in fact 
were strange and interesting. On the 
streets everywhere were men and women 
offering for sale a very few useful arti- 
cles, and many, very many, other articles 
that were entirely useless. 

Provost guards were to be found on 
every side. The very best order pre- 
vailed everywhere. I did not see a 
drunken man all day, although liquors 
were sold in all of the numerous cafes, 
and each had placards on which was 
printed, in both English and Spanish, 
an order of General Ludlow, the military 
governor, forbidding the sale of intoxi- 
cating liquors to soldiers. The order 
was obeyed to the letter. Although 
Havana is a large city its business 
houses are smnll. The drug stores are 
apothecary shops, pure and simple. No 
patent mediciness and no glass 
bottles for liquids, only white porcelain 
jars. There were no numerous show 
cases filled with toilet articles and the 
like. A cigar case in a drug store would 
be a nine days wonder. Although 
small, some of the stores are elegant. . 
In one portion of the city the narrow 

streets are entirely covered with awnings 
stretched from buidings just above the 
first floors. This gives a unique ap 
pearance to the streets and is very pleas- 
ant on hot days. 

Prices were apparently high, but it is 
because they were always quoted in 
Spanish money. They would give us 
prices in United States money, but the 
difference usually did not equal the diff- 
erence in the value of the two moneys 
In order to be safe it was best for us to 
get our money exchanged into the Span- 
ish article. For that purpose we entered 
a " Cambio de moneda," or money ex- 
change, where we got fourteen dollars 
Spanish money (less twenty cents for ex- 
change) for a ten dollar bill. This place 
would have interested an Iowa banker. 
It was about twent) feet square. A 
counter without screens diyided the 
room. On the counter was a show case 
with a display of money. Behind the 
counter was a large safe and a man whose 
only words were, "Me no speak English.' 
This was a bank or money exchange, and 
fairly represented in appearance all 
others we saw. 


r ^ 






TORREY's Rough riders. 




Pineapi)les and Bananas Shut Out — Senoritas Visit Camp — 
Cuban Funerals And Cemeteries. 

About the middle of January orders 
were issued against soldiers bringing 
bananas and pineapples into camp, and 
another order directing that the floors 
in the tents should be raised, and still 
another order prohibiting visits to cem- 
eteries without a pass for that purpose. 
The first two orders indicated that Col. 
Dows was enforcing rules that should 
have been in vogue in every regiment in 
the army, but which is too often neglect- 
ed in volunteer organizations. About 
the time we would get comfortably set- 
tled in camp, with floors in our tents, 
along would come an order to raise the 
floors eighteen inches and to sprinkle 
lime on the ground underneath. Nearly 
everything had to be whitewashed once 
a week. The floors had to be scrubbed 
three times a week while we were in 
Cuba. A solution of carbolic acid was 
put into the water used in scrubbing. 

The policing of the camp was an im- 
portant daily duty. Details of men, us- 
ually under command of a corporal. 

went over the ground every morning 
with a fine toothed rake. They were re- 
quired to pick up every little piece of 
paper etc, even if it was no larger than 
one's thumb nail. In this way the gen 
eral appearance of the camp was always 
neat and clean. 

The boys used to kick about the rule 
prohibiting the. bringing into camp of 
bananas, pineapples etc, although they 
recognized the necessity for it. Of 
course the rule was violated, and such 
things had to be smuggled in. The con- 
sumption of these articles was reduced 
to a minimum. The army ration is the 
best food a soldier can have. Other 
things used to excess are more likely to 
cause disease in the army than at home. 
Hence the reason that pineapples, 
bananas and melons were forbiddon. 
The adherance to sanitary rules pays 
and it may be said that the 49th had a 
splendid reputation in this respect. 

The order against soldiers visiting 
cemeteries was issued because certain 


The Ston' of The F^orty-nmth. 

dnprpflatinnM had ''een committed hy 
B'lmB poMi'-rs. Those crepredatinna con- 
sisted princfpa'lv in rf-movintj artificial 
flnwfTs with which man\' <<? th^- rraves 
were dncorated. Guards were placed at 
th« different cfme'eiies. after which no 
more trnnhle was reported. 

It "as announced one dav that an en- 
tertainment would he yiven at the bior 
tent, commonly called the Y. M. O. A, 
tent, on that night h>' a nnraber of Cu- 
ban sennritas from the citv. It is need- 
]pqs to pav that there was a bi? "house." 
My rer-ollection now is that there wore 
three vonng ladies, all sisters, and their 
brother and two other youngr men, one 
of whom was an American Baptist 
minister located at Havana The Cuban 
Voung people were the children of a 
native Baptist minister. I believe his 
name was Diaz. At all events it was 
said that his chnrch was the only pro- 
tectant organization in the city. The 
oldest girl and her brother had been 
teachers in Havana, '^heir object was 
to organizf^ a class in Spanish. This was 
done during the evening, a large number 
"enlisting." with the expectation that 
the pretty senorita was to be the 
teacher of this particular class. 

The entertainment consisted of a 
speech by the preacher, who was frona 
"No'th Ca'liny" and said "you all" twen- 
ty-seven times by the watch, a talk by 
the young Cuban and singing by ths 
senoritas. All the songs were in Span" 
ish, except one; the "Star Spangled Ban- 
ner" was sung in English, or what had to 
to go for English. Had you heard it you 
would have admitted that it was the 
most thoroughly mangled piece of bunt- 
ing you ever knew. 

Among the many things thst interest- 
ed us were the funerals and the way they 
dispose of their dead. There are no long 
funeral proces-Jions in Cuba as in thie- 
coun'r\. If the deceased was well to da 
a fine send otf was given him. The cof- 
fin was put vnto a magnificnnt hearse 
drawn by a fine pair ot f^mrse-^. The 
driver and undertaker, both of whom 
wear a unifortn with a three cornered 
bat, mount the seat and drive away to 
to the cemeterv, where the remains are 
buried. If the late lamented had beect 
prominent and accounted a great leader, 
then a big parade is bad. Sometimes 
several hearses are driven in the parad& 
as in the case of Gen. Garcia. At^ Lis 
funeral, which occured while we were 
in Havana, ten horses were used to draw 
one hearse. 

In the case of the middle classes, if 
the distance to the cemetery is not toa 
great, the coffin is carried on the shoul- 
cers of the pallbearers. It is no uncom- 
mon sight to see little funeral proces- 
sions of this kind. If the family of the- 
deceased is very poor no coffin is used. 
Sometimes that article is rented until 
the grave is reached, where the body is 
taken out and buried, and the coffin re- 
turned to the undertaker to be used 

One day some of the boys of the 49tb 
were at a cemetery near our camp, wheis 
an undertaker's cart drove up to the pot- 
ter's field, just outside the walls of the 
cemetery. The driver and the grave- 
digger took the body of a woman from 
the cart. The woman was enshrouded 
in a single garment — an old dress. This 
was removed, and without a single 
stitch of clothing, the body was literally 

The Story of Tlie Forty-ninth. 


dumped into ihf^ iTi-HV3, whi(th wh-< th^-n 
Slied up. Thero is no explanation to 
■offer for the removal of thu dress. It 
may have b^^Hn the only compensation 
for thn yrave (iit^tfer. 

The furipral, or dead carts, werf' queer 
iookintt vehicles. Mounted on two 
wheels WHS a box shaped affair, about 
three feet svide, six feet lonir atjd two arid 
a half feet hitjh, with a door in the rear 
■end Cross boo s are painted on each 
side. Th«se carts are used for the poor 


In the city of Havana were dead carts 
used to haul the dead paupers. It was 
tio unusual thiny to find corpses l>ing 
upon the street. These bodies and thof»Q 
of other paupers, taken out to Colon 
cemetery and left at the "Casa de! 
Muerte," or house of the dead. 

One day several of us concluded to 
visit Colon cemetery, on the outskirts of 
Havana, wherein we had previously 
learned were intered the retnains of 
those who had perished when the Maine 
was blown up. After a fatiguing tramp 
of several miles across creek and mf»ad- 
ows, through thickets and brambles, and 
up aud down the grassy slopes of num- 
erous hills, we at length reached the 
famous old cemetery which wag natned 
in honor of the world's most famous nav- 
igator — Christopher Columbus, or Cris 
tobal Colon, as Spanish speaking people 
call him. It is a queer institution, this 
old hurrying ground of centuries, about 
a mile in length by three-quarters of a 
mile in width, inclosed with a fence or 
wall about fourteen feet in height, with 
alternate panels, probably forty feet in 
length, of thick, sculptured stone and 
heavy ornamental iron grating. The 

gates were io -kf-d, but that did not deter 
us in the sliiihtesT. for we soon found a 
loose iron bar in the wall and ewch of us 
succeeded in f^queezinir ihrouuh. Then 
we started upon our tour of observation 
and it is oeedleps to add that it was a 
vei V thorouiih otie before returning to 
the camp. 

Not very far from the place in the wal 
through which we had gained ad^rission 
to the cemetery we found a ^arye pile of 
skeletons stacked up beneath a tree, and 
close to it were a number of workmen 
engaged in the pleasant and cheerful 
occupation of disintering others and 
adding thetn to the collection beneath 
the tree. Nearby a fir-" composed of rot- 
ten coffins bwTned sullenly and poluted 
the atniosphere with the fumea of its 
sickening smoke. We silentU stood by 
and watched the workmen labor at their 
gruesome task until their shovels brought 
up to view the'livid and distorted feat- 
ures of a hadly decomposed corpse; then 
we sloped. 

We met a citizen before we had gone 
very far from the trench and fire and 
pile of bones, and in reply to questions 
he stated that burial lots in the cemetery 
were so dear that only the wealthy could 
afford to purchase them outright; that 
when a poor man died his friends rented 
a grave for him at so much per annum, 
and that when the rent was left unpaid 
for a certain length of time the remains 
were disintered and thrown upon the 
bone pile and the grave leased to another 
occupant. It seemed to me to be a most 
cruel and monstrous custom to dig up a 
man's bones and stack them up under a 
tree just because his friends are too pov- 
erty stricken to pay the rent on a two by 


The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

six plot of ground. As I muse thus the 
thought occurs to me that man is the 
only animal who will wilfully and inten- 
tionally disturb the dead of his own 
kind, and that despite his veneering ot 
culture and civilization he is every bit as 
much ot a brute at heart as any other 
member of God's animal kingdom. As 
I looked at the great piles of bones and 
grinning skulls, I said to myself: "These 
were once filled with life. That skull, 
perhaps, once cradled a brain that 
dreamed of schemes for the betterment 
of mankmd, and for the liberation of an 
enslaved people. That small one un- 
doubtedly belonged to some prattling 
child vvho never knew the trials and sor- 
rows and troubles of its elders." 

Near the middle of the cemetery we 
located the two humble mounds beneath 
which repose, in their last sleep, the 
bodies of those who went down with the 
Maine. You would not know the graves 
unless someone pointed them to 3'ou, as 
was done in our case. A cheap wooden 
cross, with a simple inscription in Span- 
ish painted upon it, is all that had been 
done to indicate the place. 

We then visited the Casa del Muerte, 
or dead house, connected with the ceme- 
tery, before returning to camp. This is 
located at the southern gate. Our curi- 
osity prompted us to learn the manner 
in which Havana disposed of its pauper 
dead, which in recent years has been 
very numerous. An obliging cemetery 
employe, whom we met at the gate, in 
reply to our questions concerning the 
dead house, kindly volunteered to pilot 
us to and through it. Through a long, 
low, rambling stone building, filled with 
a numerous assortment of rooms — for 

the house is inhabited by the many 
cemetery employes as well as Havana's 
dead paupers. Some of the rooms were 
used as kitchens, dining rooms, bed 
rooms, parlors offices, storage rooms for 
the effects of the unknown dead or 
cofHns for the reception of the wealthy 
and more aristocratic who die in their 
own beds, stablea for horses, granaries 
buggy and hearse rooms, the entire 
heterogeneous collection massed beneath 
a common roof. Our guide led us to the 
grated door of ihe casa del muerte and 
politely motioned for us to enter. We 
did so and in an awed manner looked 
around upon the scene of death. Along 
the center of a low room, twenty feet 
wide by fifty feet long, were standing a 
row of heavy tables with two or three 
long, shallow, narrow, coverless oaken 
boxes resting upon each, and in these 
boxes lay the remains of human beings 
like ourselves, whose breasts were once 
sentient with the throbbings of health 
and hope. Although as naked as when 
they came into the world, you could see 
nothing of the dead save the head, hands 
and feet; all other portion of the frame 
were concealed beneath thick little heaps 
of quicklime, for this was the local mode 
of practicing cremation. 

The casa del muerte is both a morgue 
and a crematory, and the reason whv the 
faces of the dead are left uncovered by 
the chemical so long is because the au- 
thorities hoped that someone will come 
foreward to identify the remains of the 
unknown before the final process is 
adopted: and also because the head and 
feet yield more quickly to the corosive 
effect of the chemical than any other 
portion of the frame. If no one claims 

The Story of The Forty-nnith, 


the corpse, witbin a certain length of 
time, quiokiiiiie is heaped upon the head, 
feet and hands, and after its disintegrat- 
ing work has been completed the skele- 
ton is removed from the house and 
thrown into a deep pit close by the cem 
«tery, to keep company with the thous- 
ands of others, which have preceded it. 
Some of the cadavers were almost des- 
troyed, in others the process was only 
half completed, while still others were 
■evidently new arrivals, for the quicklime 
heaped upon them was pure and white, 
«s though it had 3ust been placed there, 
as was evidently the case. Ljingin one 
cer>uer of the room io all positions. 

where they had been unceremoniously 
dumped out of a dead wagon a few min- 
utes previous to our arrival, were the re- 
mains of five or six paupers found around 
the city that morning. They were still 
covered by the rage in which they had 
died, and were awaiting the process of 

When our eyes had taken io all the 
room and its lugubrious details we decid- 
ed to return to camp, for we had seen 
enough horrors for the time being. In 
years to come even the sight of an inno- 
cent lime barrel will be sufficient to con- 
jure up to our minds a vision of the casa 
del muerte of Colon cemetery. 


The Big Spring— Insane Asylum— Female Soldiers— Eight 
Days March Into the Interior. 

One dav during the latter part of Jan- 
uary, the Second Battalion hiked to the 
springs. Pilling our canteens with coffee 
and our haversacks with grub we left 
camp early one morning. From Marianeo 
we went south. Three or four miles out 
we came to a big sugar plantation with 
its big mills. Piom this point we follow- 
ed the railroad, and es there is no wagon 
road here, we were compelled to walk on 
the track. About ten o'clock we arrived 
at our first stopping place, the big spring, 
which is the source of water supply for 
Havana and is sixteen miles from that 
city. The spring, or several springe, are 
enclosed within an immense stone wall 
about thirty feet high. The water is 
onducted through a tunnel from this 
enclosure. The tunnel passes under a 
deep and rapid stream. Two blocK 
houses are standing on high ground near 
the spring. A guard is kept here all the 
time. At the time we were there Com- 
pany B had twelve men doing the guard 

A large insane asylum vs located not 
far from this place, and was visited by a 
number of the bo}s. I wad told that 
there were over a thousand inmates a 
few years ago, but that starvation and 
death had reduced the number to about 
two hundred. 

At one o'clock we again started on the 
march, intending to go to camp by 
another loute. This covered a distance 
of about twelve miles. We passed over 
what had at one time been a prominent 
thoroughfare, but was then grown up in 
grass. Although it was a hard march 
no one regretted it, for we saw lots of 
things we could have seen in no other 
way. We passed a number of places 
that had, at one time, been magnificant 
plantations. At one place the buildings 
were occupied by a number of families. 
What had once been a fine a<vu,orpark, 
with fountain and summer house, had 
been plowed up and a fine crop of to- 
bacco was growing. Apparently not 
more than one acre in a hundred was in 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


cnltivation. ThnsH thintxs wk saw grow- 
ing WPTH pineapples, nrantreH, bananas, 
tobacco, sviijar cane and one or two small 
fields of r>rettv poor corn, as viewed from 
an Iowa standpoint. 

One day I visited the Cuban hospital, 
which is located on the road about one 
mile be\ond Marec.neo. This hospital 
was only for those w ho had bpen wound- 
ed Most were fl>^sh wounds, but there 
were several pretty bad cases. One man 
had been shot through the head and was 
getting well. Two were V)o>s only thir- 
teen years old. About two thirds of ihe 
patients were negroes. Ever; thing was 
clean and seemed to he in good shape. 

In a Cuban camp, a few miles from our 
regiment was a company, numbering 
forty or fifty, composed entirely of 
women. They had been through the 
entire war with the Spaniards, and had 
participated in all the discomforts and 
dangers. Their leader was a \oung 
woman, whose mother was murdered by 
the Spaniards. Before that time I had 
always doffed my hat to the fair sex be- 
cause they are good to look upon, and 
are handy to have around, when one is 
hungry, or begins to "hanker" for his 
flannels when the winter winds begin to 
howl. Since then I have other reasons 
for endorsing the sentiment of "long life 
and eternal sunshine to womankind." 

One Sunday, while in the city, I visit- 
ed the battle ship Texas. A sailor show- 
ed us over the entire ship, from upper 
deck to the lowest point in the hold, 
where the boilers are. We examined, 
with great interest, the places where the 
vessel had been struck by the Spaniard's 
big bullets when Servera tried to escape 
from Santiago harbor. The places had 

been so skillfully repaired and painted 
that a landsmat-i would not notice them 
unless his attention was called to them. 
The crBw consisted of about four hun- 
dred offii^ers and men. Visits to the 
shore were very rare. Captain Phillip, 
who commanded the ship at Santiago, 
was wpII beloved by the men, who said 
that he was a fighter. The commander 
of the ship at the time we visited it, was 
Captain .Sigshee, who went down with 
the Maine He was not so well liked. 

On Pebruarv 20th our brigade, con- 
sisting of the^th Virginia, 49th Iowa and 
6ih Missouri, started on what is gener- 
ally known as "The March." We ex- 
pected to start Sa'^urday the 18th, but 
on Friday orders came changing f'-e 
time to Sunday. It rained hard all Sat- 
urday night, which caused a postpone- 
ment to Monday morning, the20th. This 
time nothing interfered and we started 
at 8:.S0 o'clock. Every mar, except those 
detailed with the wagons and the com- 
missioned officers, carried his rifle, bayo 
net, belt with twenty five rounds of 
ammunition, canteen filled with coffee, 
haversack with mess outfit and grub con • 
sistec" of bacon and bread or hard tack 
as each man preferred. After the first 
day however the option narrowed to 
hard tack and bacon or bacon and hard 
tack. The most bulky as well as the 
most contrary burden was our blanket 
rolls. This is made by first spreading 
out on the ground the half of a dog tent. 
On this is spread the blanket The rest 
of the outfit, consisting of tent stakes 
change of underwear, etc., is then dis- 
tributed along the middle. The whole 
is then tightly rolled up and tied with 
strings. It looks something like a huge 


The Story of The Forty-ninth, 

bologna sausage. The ends are tied to- 
gether and it is put on like some lodge 
regalias. I don't fenow just what the 
whole business weighed but before noon 
I would have sworn that mine was as 
heavy as a horse. Of course I don't 
mean a Clydesdale but just a common 
sizf^d critter. 

For the benefit of those who never saw 
an army on the march I will explain how 
the column was made up. First of all 
came 'Uncle Henry," (Gen. Hasbrouck) 
our brigade commander, followed by his 
staff, orderlies and bearer of the brigade 
colors, all on horseback. Next was an 
ambulance with the headquarters equip- 
ag e. After this came the three reg- 
ments in following order: 4th Virginia 
49th Iowa, 6th Missouri. Each regiment 
was formed in the following manner. 
First the colonel followed by his staff 
and mounted orderly; next comes the 
band, followed by the different compan- 
ies. The men march in columns of four 
with the file closers on the right. We 
marched through Marianeoat attention, 
with bands playing and flags flying, but 
as soon as we arrived at the outskirts of 
the town Major Blocklinger commanded 
"Route step, march!" Immediately guns 
were shifted to the left shoulder or car- 
ried over the shoulder by the straps, and 
talking began. "What did you talk 
about" you ask. Well, I can hardly say, 
but most generally someone was getting 
joshed proper. No jollier crowd ever 
went picnicing. At 10:20 we stopped for 
a few minutes rest. At 11:55 we made a 
45 minute stop near a banana grove for 
rest and grub, and at 12:30 we filled our 
canteens with water from a large tank 
which each regiment had for that pur- 

pose. At 2:40 we turned to the leh and 
pitched camp in a hay field. Everybody 
was tired and hungry. As soon as th& 
wagons came up fires were built and the 
cooks were busy getting supper. I for- 
got to mention that the wagon trains 
were in the rear of the last regiment- 
Each regiment has its own train. Each 
company had two four-mule wagons to- 
carry the grub, wood, cooking outfit and 
officers tent and baggage. As we carried 
ten days' supplies we had big loads. The 
day had been hot but the road was very 
good being a turnpike. Our diiection 
had been southwest and the distance 
traveled was sixteen miles. 

Tuesday morning we broke camp at 
8 o'clock and were soon on the road. 
After going about three miles we struck 
a village. Here we left the turnpike and 
went due south. The road was very bad, 
stony and not much traveled. We 
soon passed through another village. 
The houses, many of them built of bark^ 
were all covered with thatch, except a 
block house which was covered with tile. 
After passing through this town we 
stopped two hours and had dinner. The 
boys foraged a little here and soon came 
back aded with oranges andcocoanuts. 
Our guide said it was only three miles 
to San Antonio, where we were to go intc 
camp for several days, but the distance- 
must have been measured with an elastic 
chain, for it was the longest three miles 
I ever knew. It was a very hot day and 
about a mile out of the town I fell out 
and went to grass where I staid only a 
few minutes. I had lots of company, in 
fact the ambulances were crowded. I 
fought shy of those vehicles and trudged 
along until I caught up with my regi- 

PRIVATE HENRY BECKER. Co. A; died at Savannah. Ga.. January 3. 1899. from injuries received 
from falling' down open hatchway of transport. December 23. 189S, Havanna harbor Cuba. 

PRIVATE CHARLES LOBDELL. Co. A; died September 22. 1S9S, of typhoid fever. 

CORPORAL FRED E. WILLIER. Co. B; died October 13. 1S9S, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE DANIEL A. MILLER. Co. B; died October 27. 1S9S. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE GEORGE W. VAN LOON. Co. B; died October 2. 189S. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE FRANK E. WREN. Co. B; died September 30. 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE DAVID M. McCORD. Co. C; died October 5, 1898, of typhoid fever. 

CORPORAL WILLIAM J. RUDISILL. C >. C; died March 28, 1899, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE GEORGE S. BLOOD. Co. D; died September 21. 1898. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE GIRD M. CRASPER. Co. D: died September 2S. 1898. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE FRANK H. RUBENHAGEN. Co. D; died September 4, 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE OLIVER R. WALLER. Co. D; died October 23. 1898. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE WILL E. DORMAN. Co. E; died September 20. 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE CHARLES HELMICK. Co. E: died September 5. 1898. of malarial remittent fever. 

PRIVATE ALONZO L. HARTMAN. Co. E; died September 10, 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE EDWARD W. LIZER. C?. E; died Ausrust 24, 189S, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE FRANK J. McKRAY. Co. E; died October 13, 1898, of typhoid fevdV. 

PRIVATE OTTO E. NELSON, Co. E; died October 20. 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE MORSE A. WOLCOTT, Co. E; died September 23, 189S, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE JOSEPH CREVIER, Co. F; died October 26. 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE ARTHUR D. CRIST. Co. F: died January 16. 1899. of inguinal hernia. 

PRIVATE HARRY H. STAININGER, Co. F; died Octocer 5. 1898. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE CLARENCE F. WARREN. Co. F; died October 23, 189S. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE JOSEPH R. WILSON, Co. F; died September 27, 189S, of typhoid fever. 

FIRST LIEUTENANT GUY KELLOGG. Co. G; died Aiisust 21. 189S. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE CLARENCE DEARMIN. Co. G: died October 28, 189S. of typiioid fever. 

PRIVATE EMIL C. FRAHM, Co. G; died October 5. 1898, of typiioid fever. 

PRIVATE HARRY W. KERLIN. Co. G: died October 9. 1898. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE WILLIAM E. SPEER. Co. G; died September 25, 1898. of typiioid fever. 

PRIVATE IVAN E. SHOTWELL. Co. G; died January 9. 1899. of appendicitis. 

PRIVATE CLAUS HANSON, Co. H; died August 24, 1898. of typhoid fever. 

CORPORAL JAMES T. FURNESS. Co. H; died September 11. 1898. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE MILAN H. KEELER, Co. H; died October 22, 1898. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE EDWARD KLC)STEMANN. Co. H; died February 20. 1899, of typiioid fever. 

PRIVATE GUS MOSIER. Co. H; died February 23. 1899. of typiioid fever. 

PRIVATE OLE LUNDSTRUM, Co. H; died March 9, 1899, of intestinal hemorrhage. 

SERGEANT ALBERT M. STEWART, Co. I; died August 25, 1898, of typhoid fever. 

CORPORAL FRANK M. RUPP, Co. I; died September 15, 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE JOSEPH M. BASTEN, Co. I; died September 14, 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE JOHN E. CHAMPLIN, Co. I; died October 12, 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE MICHAEL DEEGAN, Co. I; died November 9, 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE H^NS E. ENDESTAD, Co. I; died September 30, 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE OLE H. EVENSON. Co. I; died October 2o, 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE FRANK C. TRUMBULL. Co. I; died September 23, I898. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE THOMAS L. WILSON, Co. I; died Sepneniber 5. 1898, of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE GEORGE LENDRUM, Co. K; died September 7, 1898. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE ALLAN E. GORDON, Co. K; died September 13, 1898, of acute Brighfs disease. 

PRIVATE ALBA A. ISBELL.Co. K; died March 18. 1899. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE WESLEY S. KLINE, Co. K; died September 27, 1898, of typhoid fever. 

FIRST LIEUTENANT GEORGE M.MICHELSEN. Co. L; died September 6, 1898, of typhoid fever 

PRIVATE HENRY C. HANSEN, Co. L; died October 1. 1898. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE ROY A. HUMPHREY. Co. L; died September 24. 1898. of typhoid fever. 

PRIVATE HERBERT R. ROMAN, Co. L; died October 15. 1898. of typhoid fever. 

MUSICIAN LOYAL ATHERTON, Co. M; died September 27, 189S, of typhoid fever. 

PRINATE MAEHEN H. COLLINSON, Co. M; died November 30, 1898, of ulcerated enteritis. 








The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


mpnt where it had halted just outside 
the town. We had the lead on this dav, 
\Ve marched through the town with 
binnersflving and t>ands playing and 
went into camp just north of town, the 
tirndest lot of fellows who ever wore out 
shoe leather on a rockj' road. Supper 
over WH crawled in our dog tents and 
staid there until 8 o'clock when we had 
to turn out to r U call. 

Wednesday morning, the 22nd, we 
were permitted to lie in bed until six 
o'clock. I soon espied a grocer's delivery 
wagon which apparently had but recent- 
ly come from the states. J ts owner was 
a Cuban who had spent most of his life 
in New YorK and but two months tiefore 
had returued and opened up a grocery 
store. It is useless to say that he did an 
immense business. While here I bought 
our bread and condenbed milk of him 
and we had one cabbage dinner. This 
being the anniversary of Washington's 
birth, passes were given to all and we 
visited the town. San Antonio has 
about 8,000 inhabitants. Like all the 
towns in Cuba, except the very small 
villages, San Antonio has one-story 
houses built together. Among the poorer 
classes everything is very dirty. 

Among the better class it is very dif- 
ferent. The people were all very friend- 
ly and whole families visited our camp 
every evening. They were all anxious to 
learn English and the children were 
making good progress in that difficult 
language. At every doorway little child- 
ren 8alu'"e us with "goo' bye." I was 
accosted by a bright little fellow at one 
of the better class houses. We learned 
that he could not speak English but 
could read it and understand it. The 

entire family, consis^^ing of one or two 
other children, a very pretty >oung lady 
and a nice looking, motherly old lady, 
all gathered about the door and we were 
soon in the midst of a lively conversa 
tion carried on mostly by signs Before 
leaving I was presented with a beautiful 
flower. The presentation of fiowers is 
very common and is intended as an evi- 
dence of good will. 

The 23rd was put in as dajs generally 
are in Camp Columbia, except that the 
first battalion took a hike of several 
miles. On the 2-lth our battalion went 
to Alquizar, a town about seven miles 
from Sail Antonio. The inhabitants 
had evidently seen but few Americans. 
Two of our ladies, Mrs. Major Blocklin- 
ger and Mrs. Vlajor Clark, were there 
and attracted gr^at attention. 

The 25th was the last day sptnt in 
camp. In the afternoon Gen. Hasbrouck 
reviewed the brigade. This was done to 
impress the Cuban-^. In fact the whole 
trip was for efffct, and in that respect 
was satisfactory. On this evening more 
Cubans visited our camp than usual. A 
good many people here lived in Tampa 
and Key West during the war and can 
speak more or less English. After re- 
treat our band gave a concert until dark 
when our visitors left with many ex- 
pressions of good will, which sentiment 
was heartily endorsed by the soldiers. 
Jollity prevailed everywhere. In one of 
the Missouri companies the boys placed 
a lighted candle on top of their dog 
tents. As the tents are only about three 
feet high it was soon noticed and every- 
one proceeded to do likewise. The 
night was dark and the scene was most 
beautiful all over the brigade. On the 


The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

east side of our camp a numhHr of pnr- 
sons yot togpthPr and fnrniinsr a line 
held their candles in a position to form 
the word "Iowa " It was trreeted with 
cheers from other rptrirnent. 

Sdnif- ver> fine sioriH is found hero 
It is verv soft when first taken from the 
ground and can easily he cut with a 
knife. After ht^ing exposed to the air it 

Early Sunday morning we hroke camp 
and started on our return hy another 
route. We passed through Ricon a 
small town on the railroad. At noon we 
stopped for dinner nfter traveling eight 
miles. Soon after resuming the march 
we passed through Santiago de Vegas, a 
town of several thousand inhabitants 
Prom this point we had a turnpike to 
travel on until we got to Camp Columbia- 
During the afternoon we passed through 
a village called La Cubana. About five 
o'clock we arrived at Calabazar on the 
railroad where we went into camp. As 
soon as the tents were up we all went 
swimming in a stream which ran along- 
side our camp. The water in all the 
streams I saw in Cuba was good and as 
clear as crystal. 

Monday morning, the 27th, we started 
on what we knew was to be our last day 
out. As the wagons had been consider- 
ably lightened, a good share of our loads 
were hauled into camp. As we were 
nearing Havana the number of villages 
increased. We passed through the su- 

hiirh« of that citv. An incident occurred 
hfTH which nhowM thn irrnvHrence of the 
avHTrtg*' siildinr «nd his quickoHsss in p^r- 
Cf'ivintf H sham and hi>4 readiness to nn- 
niask it. Whenever a high official ap- 
pears It is the vluty of the flr^t man see- 
ing him to call out "attention, men! hnre 
comes General so-and-so." On this oc- 
casion we had sto()pHrl in the Hu*»urb 
known as .lesus del Monte, for a rest. 
Thtre being but few stre^'t car linm the 
city is full of carettes which carrv pas- 
senger to the various suburbs. One of 
these vehicles, on the front of which was 
painted the words ".Jesus del Monte,' 
came along. Its onlv passenger was an 
old fellow whose self importance wae 
dazzling to all behnldeis. As soon as 
the carette appeared someone immedi- 
ately sang out, "attention, men! here 
comes Jesus" 

Just before getting to our own camp 
we saw Gen. Lee standing by the road- 
side closely «i(Tutinizing every man as he 
marched by. Soon after one o'clock we 
got back to the uld camp. 

Taking it altogether, the trip, which 
had lasted eight days, was a success. 
The weather had been good, there being 
but one rain and that was not heavy. 
We had seen lots of new things, Cuba 
has a bright future if those half breeds 
called soldiers will turn their hungry 
looking ponies out to graze, throw away 
the machette that continually dangles at 
their sides and go to work. 


When the Circus Came to Camp — Why Rastus Didn't Buy 
A Chicken for the Chaplain. 

For a wppk in Pebniarv a oirfos show 
held forth in Oarap Colurahja. Offoiirse 
it was wpH natroniz«ri. Sotne of the 
boys attended the "services" pv»»ry night, 
and it rande little difference to thera 
whether they had monev to pay the ad- 
mission pr»ce or not. If the price was 
not at hand they crawled under the tent 
in the good old fashioned wav Of 
course there was a provost euard. There 
always is whenever the soldiers congre- 
gated in anv large numherB outside of 
camp The guard on this occasion was 
composed of men from the First Texas 
A young scamp was in the act of crawl- 
ing under the tent when he was espied 
by a guard, who said "You-all stop 
there," The language of the young 
scamp was very reprehensible, indeed. 
He directed the attention of the guard 
to a place not on the map, but which, 
according co the good old orthodox idea, 
has existence, and is said to possess a 
very warm climate. The guard answered 
with a shot from his Krag and the bul- 

let struck an F man in the leg. Imme- 
diately ^h^'^e WH'^ an mirnar. The 49 h 
m^n wanted lo mob the guard who had 
done thp shooting and of course the 4th 
Virginia men helped in the matter. 

Word was sent to Col. Dows and he 
ordered the regiment, or that portion of 
It no* at the show, to fall in under arms 
in the company streets. This was done 
to prevent the men running down to the 
show and thus increasing the disorder 
that already prevailed. We did not 
know that at the time. Somehouy said 
that the Cubans had started an insur- 
rection. This did not seem improbable 
sine =1 that it was well known that there 
was considerable unrest among them for 
some reason. Besides it had only been 
about two weeks since the Filipinos be- 
gun a war against the United States 
armv. There were many laughable oc- 
curances on this occasion. One patriot, 
unable to find a match, was rummaging 
around in the dark trying to find his 
;ins, and his gun, and his belt. He 


The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

was in a hurry and he whs toad clefir 
throutih. Hh was heard ti> hh\ : "If 
thev want to fitibt why the h — I don't 
they fitiht in the day tioit*?" In the 
mt^aniinie thn tfuard from thn nearby 
retiiments were hurried to ncene of action 
and the difficulty was soon settled. 
When this had all been done the cotn- 
panies were dismissed, and peace once 
more reigned in Cuha. 

A story of the 49th would not he com 
plete without something about "Rastus." 
Rastus was a young negro about eighteen 
years of age. rather bright, but the 
"orneriest" coon that ever "ducked" 
when work was in sight. His home was 
in Des Moines, and while the regiment 
was at Camp McKinley he "hired out" 
to Captain Jaeggi. I believe that Lieut. 
Colonel Ham also shared the responsi- 
bility of being Rastus' boss. I cannot 
say that the following story, which 
Raetus told himself, is true, but I will 
give it for what it is worth. 

One day the chaplain met Rastus and 
said: "Rastus, do you know where you 
could get a chicken for us." 

"Now look here, Mr. Mason," said our 
colored brother, "jest 'cause I'm a nig- 
ger I aint goin' to steal chickens fo' no 

"I don't want you to steal it, I want 
you to buy one. One of the boys is sick 
and he can't eat army grub; I want to 
buy a nice fat hen for him. Do you 
think you could overcome your racial 
prejudices in the matter and pa3 cash, 
providing I furnish the money?" 

"I felt sorry for the poor soldier boy'' 
said Rastus, telling the story afterwards, 
"and I told Mr. Mason that I would buy 
a hen or die in the attempt." So the 

chaplain gave rre fo'ty cents and I sta'ted 
out to NiCHte the domicile of some poul- 
try. Of co'se it wa-< my luck, when I 
turned the first co'ner, to find a hunch 
of corral niygers shooting craps Now, 
I jest nache'l> can't stand it to heah no 
man say, seven, come eleven.' without 
gittin' mighiily interested. So I got in 
the mixup right away. The first time I 
lose ten cents The riext time I lose ten 
cents moah Then 1 began to git scared 
and said that I would play twenty cents 
and git even. I would then go and buy 
the hen. I played and win Now I saw 
that my luck had changed, and I 
thought that mv time had couie to win 
a stake. I kept plavin' until all the 
chaplain's money was gone. That was 
about an hour ago and 1 have been busy 
dodgin' the chaplain. "Say," continued 
the troubled darky, to the listaner, "do 
you suppose the chaplain would let me 
oflf if 1 told him that I intended all the 
time to let him have half of the win- 

He was assured that it was hardly 
probable that the chaplain would care 
to act as his backer. 

One evening about dark, l^a got 

into an argument with two of the boys 
about ghosts. The boys insisted that 
there were such things, while Rastus 
stoutly maintained that there was noth 
ing in it. Said he: "You can feed that 
kind of stuflf to them southern niggers 
we saw in Jacksonville and Savannah 
but you can't make me believe anything 
of that kind; I'm a Des Moines nigger 
and I don't take in no ghost stories " 

Just then a certain non-com came up 
and one of the boys said: "Say, Sergeant, 
Rastus denies that there are such things 

The Story of I'he Forty-ninth. 


as ghosts. What do von sav H*i..ut it?" 
ThB sertjHHnt said that liHstim waa 
mistaken, and, after talkintr nhuut all 
sorts of uncanny thingH, adiuittPi 
hn himself was a medium who could call 
up the spirits of the depurted, hut that 
he did not want the fact tjeneraliy known 
Of course he was urged to give an ex- 
hibition of his powers. Rastus joined 
in the urging, but said that he didn't 
take anv stock in the matter. The ser- 
geant led the way to his tent, the soldiers 
all ttie time maintaining a most serious 
air. It was a very dark night and every 
thing was quiet in camp, so r.har things 
were favorable for a spiritualistic seance. 
.\rriving at the tent a candle was 
lighted and the sergeant seated himself 
at the cracker-box desk, put his hands 
on the top with his two thumb nails 
pressing each other jflrmlv, and with a 
far-away look in his eyes, began wrest- 
ling with the spirits. Now it must be 
known that anyone can produce rappinga 
bv pressing his thumbs together and 
moving them slightly. If his hands are 
resting on the top of a table, or other 
object that is a good conductor of sound 
he can thus produce a popping sound, 
especially if everything is quiet. 

After two or three minutes of perfect 
silence the sergeant was heard to say, as 
if to himself, "There are so many of these 
Cubans, who were killed bv the Span- 
iards, in the old building near our guard 
house that it is diflficult to get control of 
any one spirit." Now Rastus, together 
with everyone else had heard the story 
about the killing of forty Cubans at this 
place, and the remark had the effect of 
placing the ghost proof darky in a proper 
frame of mind to appreciate what was to 


.After waiting a few minutes longer the 
sergeant said; -If there are any spirits 
present that desire to communicate with 
us they Will answer by 'yes' and 'no ' If 
your answer to my question is 'ves' you 
will rap; if it is 'no' you will not rap." 
The following dialogue then ensued be. 
tween the medium and the spirits: 

Ques ion "Is there a spirit present 
that, in life knew anyone now present?" 

.Answer. "Yea." 

Question "Did vou know this med- 

Answer, "No." 

Question. "Did you know Rob Gil 

Answer. "No." 

Question. "Did you know 'Bench' 

Answer, "No" 

Then turning to Rastus the sergeant, 
in a trembling voice, asked: Rastus, 
what is your real name?" 

And Rastus, in a voice still more 
trembling, answered: "John Allen." 

The medium then turning his attention 
to the spririt said; 

"Did you know John Allen?" 

Answer. "Yes." 

Then turning again to Rastus the ser 
geant asked: "Did you know anyone who 
is now dead?" 

With chattering teeth the darky said: 
"M-m-may-b-beJt is my gr-gr-grand fa- 
fa father." 

It is not necessary to continue this any 
further, except to say that Rastua was so 
badly scared when the seance was over 
one of the boys had to go with him to 
his quarters. 

After returning from the march the 


The Story of 7'he Forty-ninth. 

roeiment asraia took up the reeular camp 
duties. Vlost of the men had already 
visited the principal points of interest. 
Time hung heavily on our hands, and 
the principal subject talked about was 
the probable time of muster out. 

Some tira»> during the latter part of 
March the 4th Virginia left for the 
states. As it was not ♦^hought that we 
would again see them our entire regi- 
ment went over to visit them the night 
before they broke camp. The next 
morning the 49th escorted them to the 
train. We were sorry to see them go. 

Some time before this Gen. Hasbrouck 
was relieved from the command of our 
brigade and was sent to the western part 
of the island. Being the senior colonel 
in the brigade, Colonel Taylor, of the 4th 
Virginia commanded until his regiment 
left, when Colonel Dows succeeded him. 
This left Major Clapp in command of the 
regiment as Lieut, Col, Ham was in Iowa 
on leave of aosence. 

One night, just before leaving Cuba, 
several companies experienced a smoke- 
out. Everybody had gone to their tents 
and were engaged in reading or writing, 
and in some cases playing cards. Some 
fellow would say, "I smell smoke." "So 
do I," another would exclaim. Then 
they would see the smoke coming from 
the bedding, apparently. Vhev would 
throw things out and look for the fire 
but could never find it. This occured in 
a number of tents 'n several companies. 
Afterwards it was learned that a num 
ber of mischievous chaps had got some 
smoke preducing material, and firing it, 
would slip it under somebody's tent and 
await developments. It was said that a 
certain captain, whose name was Allen, 

was at the head of this ••nn-^piracy. 

On the evening of Ariril 1st orders 
came for the 49th to y^t ready to leave 
for the states ImmediatMlx there was 
great rejoicing. The band serenaded the 
entire regiment, after which a great 
crowd gathered in front of headquarters' 
where speeches were marie in celebration 
of the good news. The wise ones refused 
to join in the rejoicing, claiming that the 
report whs only an 'April fool." Like 
many other wise men they were wrong. 

On April 4th orders were re':ieived for 
six companies to proceed to Savannah, 
Georgia, an board the transport San An- 
tonio. The next day companies P, H, K 
and C, composing the first battalion, un- 
der command of Lieutenant Colonel 
Ham, left the harbor of Havana and pro- 
ceeded to the mouth of the Savannah 
river where they went into quarantine 
camp on Daufuskie island. As this is 
not intended as a history of the regiment 
but only my own recollections, I am un- 
able to give further account of the doing 
of this detachment until after we joined 
them at Savannah. 

On April 8th the other companies of 
the regiment, with headquarters and 
band, and also the entire command of 
the 6th Missouri broke camp, and went 
to Havana, to go on board the steamship 
"The City of Havana " The bag- 
gage deta'l went with the wagons, which 
carried the baggage, there being about 
eight wagons to each company. All the 
rest of the officers and men went to the 
city bv train. It was understood that 
the regiment that first got its baggage to 
the wharf would be the first to load. 
Therefore there was a great deal of 
hustling, and as usual the 49th won the 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 



We arrived at the wharf before noon 
and were compelled to wait until night 
before all was loaded. The ship started 
for God's country at five o'clock next 
morning. 1 did not wake up until we 
were well out at sea and in two minutes 
I was the sickest man that ever breath- 
ed. I had plenty of company for nearly 

everybody was in the same condition. 
It is impossible to describe one's sensa- 
tions when seasick. I thought that my 
time had come, and when the boys asked 
me what word I wanted to send to my 
family, I instructed them to report my 
demise, but not to lie about it by saying 
that I died happy. 


Four Days Exper'ences With Detail at Quarantine Sta- 
tion — An Historical Spot. 

When the steamship, City of Havana, 
left Havana, Cuba, at five o'clock Sunday 
morning, April 9th, 1899, she bad on 
board the entire regiment of the Sixth 
Missouri and six companies of the H'ort}- 
ninth lovpa; and also the headquarters 
and band of the last named retjiraent. 
She was a fast boat and arrived at the 
mouth of the Savannah river at eight 
o'clock of the evening of April 10th. We 
there learned that we would have to 
stay in quarantine for five days. The 
ship went to anchor in the river a short 
distance above the fumigating station. 
Not a soul on board knew a single thing 
about the processof fumigation, but that 
did not prevent many reports to be in 
circulation about what they would "do 
to us." 

Early next morning the ship drew up 
to a wharf, or dock, which was out in the 
middle of the river. Immediately after 
breakfast I was detailed with six men 
from Co. G to stay, with like details from 
other companies, to unload the ship. 

while all the other troops from both reg- 
iments left the ship on lighters towed by 
tugs. They went to be fumigated. Later 
in the forenoon we saw them going on 
steamboats to Difuskie Island which was 
said to be six miles distant. In addition 
to the details from the 49th were as 
many men I'ro n the Vlissouri retjiment 
One who has never seen a steamship 
can have no idea how much merchandise 
one will hold. All the quarter-master 
and commissary stores, and all the per- 
sonal belongings of the officers and men 
of both regiments, 'were in the hold and 
we had to unload as there were no steve- 
dores in sight. The first thing to do was 
to unload the officers horses. Col. Dows 
horse was the first to make the trip. 
The horse was put in a sling which was 
attached to a rope, that was connected 
to the steam derrick. At the words "go 
ahead" the lever was moved and Mr. 
Horse went flying up through the hatch 
and considerably above the upper deck. 
The derrick was then swung aroGnd and 







The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


the horse was suspeoded 30 or 40 feet 
above the water. He was then lowered 
to the lighter, on which he was taken to 
shore. One can only imagine the horses 
fright. He was perfectly helpless and 
kicked his legs in vain. 

When we went on the detail we had 
expected to stay only 24 hours, so we 
kept out rations for one day, and travel 
rations at that. It consisted of a can- 
teen of coffee, some hardtack and a can 
of corned beef We worked all day and 
until two o'clock at night before every 
thing was unloaded onto the dock and 
the lighters. We then went to bed. 
Early next morning we had to get off the 
ship as it was to leave immediately. We 
stood on the wharf and watched the 
great ship move away. Then we began 
to wonder when a tug boat would come 
after us. Then we began to get acquaint- 
ed with the Missourians and found them 
to be pretty nice fellows. The sun be- 
came hot and then hotter. About noon 
we discovered, upon comparing notes, 
that we were out of rations. We looked 
through the stores on the wharf and 
found plenty of hardtack and that was 
all. One of the 6th Missouri boys said 
that their colonel's private mess outfit 
was on the wharf somewhere if it had 
not been lost. Everyone being anxious 
lest it was lost began looking for it It 
was found. A council of war was im- 
mediately called, and giving the matter 
rrature and careful consideration for 
about thirty seconds, or at least eight or 
ten seconds anvway, it was decided to 
confiscate the chewable articles. Good 
and suiBcient reasons controlled our ac- 
tions throughout, and were as follows: 

1st. The colonel was a regular army 

officer and therefore the stuff should be 

2nd. Among the stores were canned 
peaches, canned cream, sugar, breakfast 
bacon and other things, all of which 
were too good for an officer; therefore 
they should be confiscated. 

There were other reasons for the con- 
fiscation, not least among which were 25 
or 30 very hungry men. There had been 
about a hundred altogether on the detail 
but the others had gone to camp early in 
the morning. 

There was no coffee to be found. This 
was surely a bad showing for the colonel. 
A common soldier must have coffee. 
The hospital steward of the 6th Missouri 
said that he believed there was some 
French bouUion among the hospital 
steres. It was found, and with it was a 
supply of whisky in quart bottles. It 
had been bought for the sick, and as 
the surgeons occasionally get in that con- 
dition, the quality was good. The first 
impulse of the lowans was to throw the 
liquor in the river, but the Missourians 
outnumbered us. Besides they put up 
a strong argument for its retention. 
They told us how we were all liable to 
get malaria, and whisky was the best 
known remedy. Besides were we not out 
on this wharf, in the mouth of the river, 
with the great waters of the mighty At- 
lantic surrounding us. In the unknown 
depths of these waters were awful mon- 
sters — sea serpents particularly. Would 
any reasonable man deny that there was 
great danger of these serpents bitting us. 
Was it not true that this same Kentucky 
dew was the best known remedy for 
snake bites. These arguments were un- 
answerable, at least by soldiers from 


The Story of The P'orty-ninth. 

prohibition Iowa, 

What should we do for water with 
which to boil the bouUion? Fortunately 
the tide wag going out, and the fresh, 
though muddy, waters of the Savannah 
had reduced the salt of the sea to a 
brackish taste. By adding some of the 
colonel's sugar and condensed cream, 
and a few drops (only a few, remember) 
of the hospital liquor, we compounded a 
substitute for coffee. We feasted like 
kings and ate like wolves, for had we 
uot been living for several days upon 
travel rations and sea sickness. 

Being just from Cuba we were well 
supplied with good cigars. Lighting 
these we sought the shady side of the 
piled up stores, and there lying on our 
backs with half closed eyes we watched 
the curling smoke, from the fragrant 
flavanas, until it mingled with the great, 
lazy, floating clouds framed in the blue 
sky above. 

When we had finished our after din- 
ner siesta we put in the time in organiz- 
ing a provisional brigade. Lieutenant 
E. R. Moore was unanimously elected 
brigadier general. The 6th Missouria's 
big Q. M. Sergeant was elected colonel 
and everybody else got a commission. 
Lieut. Machemer, of Co. C, who was 
acting as regimental commissary of the 
49th, wanted to be Chaplain, but as he 
didn't know anything about horse trad- 
ing it was decided that he was not qual- 

About four o'clock a tug came with a 
lot of negro stevedores on board. They 
had a lighter on which was loaded all 
the stores from the wharf. We expected 
to be taken down to the fumigating 
station, but were disappointed, as orders 

had come directing us to stay where we 
were until next morning. 

We again allowed hunger to overcome 
our scruples and sloped on Colonel 
Hardeman's rations. I may as well state 
here that nothing was ever said about 
our use of the colonel's grub. I suppose 
he would have done just as we did bad 
he been in our place. It has always 
been a well recognized principle that 
soldiers will eat when hungry, providing 
there is anything digestible to be found, 
regardless of who is the owner. ' 

Night having settled over us we rolled 
our forms in our blankets and content- 
edly went to sleep with only the blue 
sky, studded with sparkling stars, for a 
roof, and the hard floor of the lighter for 
a bed. However we had been roughing 
it for a year, and slept soundly, only 
waking when daylight came. Speedily 
converting an empty hardtack can into a 
basin, we soon "washed up," and comb- 
ing our hair with our fingers, we were 
ready for breakfast, which the self ap- 
pointed cooks soon had made. 

We did not have to wait long for a 
change. A tug soon towed us to the 
fumigating station. This was Thursday 
morning and we had been at the wharf, 
in the middle of the river, since Mondaj- 

Arriving at the wharf of the fumigat- 
ing station we found an immense amount 
of government stores on lighters. There 
were a large number o gangs of men 
each consisting of one white man and 
four uegros. The white man wore a big 
metal badge, which set forth, in clear 
cut letters, the fact that he was an in- 
spector. His haughty bearing indicated, 
beyond question, that he fully appreci- 

The Story of The Fort3'-ninth. 


ated the innportance of his position, and 
expected us common mortals to prompt- 
!}■ apologize for daring to breath in his 
presence. However his efforts in that 
direction were all in vain, for the devil- 
may care manner with which those 
graceless scamps, the boys, appropriated 
.the surroundings to their own use and 
comfort, soon caused Mr. Inspector to 
confine his authority to the darkies. 

This inspector reminds me of a story 
the bo3 stall on a member of the i9th 
who was best known in the army as 
"Benchlegs." Now when we first went 
into the service we all had to learn the 
"General Orders," and the officer of the 
day or the officer of the guard never 
failed to ask each sentinel if he knew 
them. As the recruit had spent half the 
night before memorizing these particu- 
lar orders he generally knew them all 
right, but new to the service and having 
a sort of a hazy idea that the wearer of 
shoulder straps was at least a second 
cousiri to a duke, he naturally forgot 
them. After a little while he could re- 
cite the orders to the entire satisfaction 
of the most exacting officers in the army. 
When the boys had all learned the du- 
ties expected of them, when on guard, 
they were not questioned on this point. 
They knew the General Orders just as 
well on the day we mustered out as they 
did a year before when they memorized 
them, but they couldn't have repeated 
them correctly, according to the text, if 
the guard house had been the penalty 
for failing so to do. One day, near the 
end of the service, Bench was walking 
his poet "in a military manner," when a 
certain captain, acting as officer of the 
day, appeared Bench promptly presented 

arms, expecting that the captain would 
pass on. But no such luck. He came 
up to where Bench stood. That individ- 
ual brought his rifle to a "port" and, with 
due humility, awaited the will of his su- 
perior. The captain quickly said, "Do 
you know General Orders?" It was a 
surprise to Bench, though he didn't say 
so, and pretending to be half scared td 
death with his knees knocking together, 
his hands trembling and his gun shaking 
he stammered, "N — No sir, I — I know 
General Lee and General Hasbrouck and 
a lot of these other generals running 
around here, but I don't know General 
Orders." The captain knew he was be- 
ing guyed, and turning on his heel he 
left the spot without another word. 

We knew we would have to stay at the 
fumigating station until our baggage and 
belongings of all kinds were inspected 
and fumigated. We hoped to get 
through on this day (Thursday) and re- 
turn to the regiment by night. We soon 
learned that we would be disapointed 
in this respect. Like the pioneer fathers 
going to mill, we had to wait our turn. 
The time was put in in various ways. A 
good deal of "gassing" was indulged in. 
One question, that had become chronic 
in the regiment, was again thoroughly 
discussed. It was about when we would 
be muatered out. When the argument 
had waxed warm, I suggested that we 
would probably get out by the middle of 
the week, which suggestion was not 
deemed worthy of attention. 

Seeing that i was not likely to be a 
very conspicious flfgure in the contention 
I borrowed a pipeful of tobacco of one 
of the boys and then sought a quiet nook 
on top of a lot of stores, where I could 


The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

take in all the surroundings. Over yon- 
der, just a little ways, are the dull, 
weather beaten walls of old Fort Pulaski, 
nanaed in honor of that soldier of fortune, 
but none the less patriot, Count Pulaski, 
who gave his life at the siege of Suvan- 
nah, only 18 miles away, just 120 years 
ago. I cannot help thinking that had 
I been here 266 years ago I could have 
seen Gen. Oglethorpe and his expedition 
just entering the river on their way to 
make the first settlement in Georgia, at 
Savannah. Two years later I might 
have seen the founder of Methodism, 
John W esley, accompaning Oglethrope 
on his second, expedition to Savannah 
where, a little later, I might have at- 
tended the first Sunday school organized 
in America. Then I realize that this is 
an historic spot and that these shores 
have silently witnessed many scenes of 
interest to every American. My eyes 
wandering once more to the fort, my 
mind takes a leap of more than two hun- 
dred years and I see the stare and 
stripes lowered and the traitor's flag, 
the stars and bars, is flying to the breeze. 
For four years the fierce conflict of the 
great civil war rages, and I see coming 
yonder thousands of ragged, footsore 
marching men with the btarry banner in 
the van. It is Billy Sherman and his 
bummers just completing their "March 
to the Sea." I mingle with them and I 
see faces that are strangely familiar. Ah! 
Now I know they are the same men who 
yearly meet in reunions. Thirty-flve 
years makes great changes in their ap- 
pearance. I go up the river a few miles 
and see the old brick Fort Jackson, gar- 
risoned by four companies, and in their 
youthful commander I recognized the 

present grizzled Captain Benry M. Vvil 
son, of the 28th Iowa. 

Awakened from my reveries by the 
smell of frying bacon, I hastily join my 
comrades at supper, when they noncha- 
lantly explain, in response to my inquiry 
as to where the grub came from, that 
they "stole it from the 3rd Kentucky 
over on that lighter." The 3rd Ken- 
tucky. Why that regiment is composed 
of the sons of the men who followed the 
fortunes of the stars and bars thirty five 
years ago. And they, like ourselves, 
have just returned from a foreign land, 
^here they have carried the stars and 
stripes in its mission of extending the 
blessings of liberty and freedom. Sure- 
ly this is a queer world of ours. 

Whee we had finished supper someone 
suggested that we put up'a'tent to sleep 
in. Plenty of material being at hand we 
soon had up a large hospital tent on a 
clear spot on one of the lighters. Hav- 
ing been used to every luxury during the 
past year, we felt that we should have a 
carpet. A tent fly was soon spread. 
Some of the boys had seen a lot of bed- 
ding consisting of silk covered pillows 
with beautiful monograms, which had 
evidently been worked by the fingers of 
somebody's sweethearts: portable mat- 
tresses; patchwork quilts, that would 
have dazzled the eyes of even a pamper- 
ed and perfumed dude. It was all piled 
up on the wharf, waiting transportation 
to the building where it would have to 
undergo a dry steam fumigating process. 
It belonged to the officers of some other 
regiment, and m some way was soon be- 
ing distributed inside our tent. Candles- 
had been secured somewhere and some- 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


It was a happy family gathered in the 
tent. There was Lieut. Moore, the regi- 
mental quartermaster, and commander of 
the detail. His clerks and regular stand- 
bys were Jack Waychoff, Bill Hasty and 
Quimby. This was a great trio. The 
tirst two were characters in their way. 
Jack was known as "the noisy, man" 
probably because he never said anything 
unless spoken to. His vocabulary was 
limited but rich. He industriously 
chewed his own tobacco and was an old 
bachelor. Bill was big and noisy and 
much given to expletives. He was great- 
ly pleased when he was detailed from 
his company to the quartermaster's de- 
partment, for "now" he said, "I can take 
a chew of tobacco without asking per- 
mission of the captain." Another advan- 
tage was that he didn't have to get a pass 
to go out of camp when he wanted to do 
"a little cussin." Then there were Sergt. 
Churchill, of Co. D: Sergt. Bankston and 
Private Fowler, of Co. B; Sergt. Hol- 
comb and Corporal Sellars, of Co. M- 
Sergt. Raymond, of Co. E; Sergt. Hund; 
ly and Privates Tracy, Dovan and Booth, 
of Co. L; and Corporal Dand and the 
writer of Co. G. Sergt. Major Townsend 
was there to look after the headquarters 
baggage; and hospital steward. Dr. Haer- 
ling, kept an eye on the Hospital stores. 
Early next morning we waked up and 
rolling our blankets, we cooked and ate 
our breakfast. After this was done we 
proceeded to our work. This work con- 
aieted largely in keeping an eye on the 
inspectors and their negro helpers while 
they inspected and fumigated our be- 
longings. Our object in keeping an eye 
on them was to see that they didn't dis- 
turb things too much and especially to 

prevent their stealing anything. Seeing 
that they were not likely to get to swipe 
anything the colored brethren tried beg- 
ging. One of them asked me to give him 
a pair of old shoes. I told him that I 
would be glad to do so, but in this case, 
I couldn't as these particular shoes had 
belonged to Gen. Maceo, and were the 
ones he was wearing when he was killed 
by the Spaniards, Now Gen. Maceo was 
not only the greatest of all Cuban fight- 
ers, but he was a negro, a fact which 
every coon knows. Our Mr. Darkey's 
eyes popped out, and hastily dropping 
the shoes (from which he more than half 
expected to see the ghost of the dead 
Maceo emerge) he moved away quickly. 
The process of fumigation was very 
simple. Each inspector had four helpers, 
one to open the boxes, one to cake out 
the contents, one to sprinkle them with 
the "dope," and one to do the repacking. 
The "dope looked like water but smelled 
different. In fact, the smell had staying 

The boys of the 6th Missouri detail, 
with whom we had fraternized while at 
the dock in the river, had been separated 
from us, since coming down to the fumi- 
gating station, by the orders of a lieuten- 
ant of that regiment. We all regretted 
this as we had found them to be fine 
fellows. I do not know what was the 
lieutenant's object, but I believe it was 
nothing but pure cessedness and a vain 
desire to parade his authority. 

It was the general desire to get through 
with the work and join the regiment on 
Daufuskie Island. Every man must go 
through a fumigating process at the 
building on the hill, according to the 
rules, and so far as I know the rule was 


The Story of 71ie Forty-ninth. 

rigidly enforced. But rules didn't apply 
to this particular detail, therefore there 
was a general desire not to be fumigated. 
The most innocent looking chap in the 
outfit— one who looked like he might 
have been a candidate for the ministry 
before he donned the blue — was selected 
ae a sort of steering committee in the 
matter. Along in the afternoon, when 
the chief mogul among the inspectors 
happened to be near, Mr. Innocent re- 
marked to a comrade that he was 'glad 
that we had been fumigated with the 
regiment, for we could go to camp just 
as soon as our work was done." It 
worked like a charm. 

When the work was completed, at just 
before night, we were permitted to go 
aboard the steamboat, which was to take 
us to the island. We had only got on 
board when a man came running down 
and said that our stuff had been through 
the steam fumigating proees-s and that 
we could have it. Now the facts were 
that we didn't have anything of the kind, 
but we were all polite people and didn't 
want the fellow to think that we doubted 
his word. So meekly following him we 
soon came to a big boiler looking affair 
about ten feet in diameter and lined on 
the inside with steam pipes. It was 
cooled sufficiently for us to enter, and 
there we found more than a wagon load 
of quilts, pillows, camp chairs and many 
other articles that had evidently contrib- 
uted to the comfort of many officers, and 
some of the articles were fine enough to 
have even belonged to the gorgeous Gen, 
Miles. None of it belonged to anyone 
in the 49th, but we did not want to dis- 
pute the word of the inspector, so we 
promptly took as much of the bast arti- 

cles ae the fifteen of us could carry. 
When we arrived at tbe camp with our 
booty the boys wanted to know whether 
we had robbed a female boarding school 
or a summer hotel. 

The steamboat soon started and made 
its way amongst a lot of islands to the 
camp, on Daufuski, a distance of six or 
seven miles, where we arrived about 
eight o'clock. 

Before we got into camp we agreed 
that we would tell the boys that their 
cigars had all been conflscdted by the 
revenue officers. Everyone had packed 
in their boxes at least one box of fine 
Havana cigars and some of them had a 
number of boxes. When we got into 
camp the boys all gathered around and 
wanted to know what condition their 
'things" were in, and were especially 
anxious about their cigars. We told 
them that every cigar was taken by the 
re\enu6 officers, but that they would be 
permitted to redeem their smokers by 
payiag the duty, which, according to our 
tell, was about S2 00 a box of fifty. Im- 
mediately there was a loud and prolonged 
kick from the whole regiment, for the 
boys from the other companies had told 
the same story. 

Having returned to the regiment the 
story of the detail is ended. We re- 
mained on the island two days lojager, 
and on Sunday, April 16th, went on a 
a steamboat to Savannah, where we 
went into Camp. 

When the six companies of the Forty- 
ninth left the quarantine station they 
proceeded to Daufuskie Island and went 
into camp very near the sea. The island 
was quite large and was generally level, 
there being no hills. The population 

The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

Vi'as evidently stnaH, consisting princi- 
pally of iiey:roes. There were two or three 
^ood houses probably used by summer 
residents of Savannah. Near our camp 
was a fine beach on which guard mount- 
ing was held every morning. 

The first night in caoip was so much 
colder than we had been used to that 
some of the boys built fires in the com- 
pany streets. One of the most interest- 
ing and amusing sights seen during the 
service was a guard mounting by the 
4ih Tennessee. I didn't see it but I was 
told that the drum major, who was about 
seven feet tall, conducted his band to 
the parade ground, and during the cere- 
mony of insp ction he went to one side 
and sat do '^n at th foot of a tree. Every 
feature of the ceremony was almost as 

The six companies which hsd pre 
ceeded us from Cuba had served their 
five days on the island and gone to 
Savannah. On Sunday morning, April 
16th, just one week after leaving Cuba, 
we went aboard the steamer Stafford 
and proceeded up the river to the city. 
We disembarked at the wharf on the 
east side of Savannah and marched out 
to the old camp ground which we had 
|eft four months k>efore. The 161st 
Indiana occupied the ground where our 
former camp had been and we moved on- 
to the ground which had been the camp 
of the 4th Virginia. That regiment was 
just east of us in the old 6ih Missouri 

We remained in this camp for almost 
a month when we were mustered out. 
Time hung heavily on our hands: disci 
pline was somewhat relaxed. The men 
did not need written passes when they 

wanted to go to town or elsewhere. 

This section of the country had ex- 
perienced a severe winter and for the 
first time in years there had been snow. 
The negroes had suffered much, and 
many of them had no food. Hundreds 
of them, principally women and children, 
visited our camp at meal times to beg 
for the scraps that was left from the 
mess tables. 

One evening some of the boys asked 
me to attend a cake walk and swell ball 
which was to be given by the elite of 
East Savannah, a small town near our 
camp, all the inhabitants of which were 
negroes. As it was my last opportunity 
to participate in anv social affair in the 
sunny south 1 decided to go. We went 
to the town and asked to be directed to 
the hall where the festivities were to 
take place. We were informed by a man, 
whose bearing indicated that he be- 
longed to the bon ton, that it w-as not 
customary for society psople to gather 
until about nine o'clock. He pointed 
out the hall, a one story frame building 
about twenty fee*- wide and thirty feet 
long. Soon after it was opened the 
crowd gathered. A motlv crowd it 
proved to be. About half were soldiers 
all others being negroes of all ages. 
Across one end of the room was a 
counter made of a board laid on two 
barrels. On it were a number of sand- 
wiches and a keg of beer. Two meek 
and humble followers of the flag ap- 
proached the old colored woman, who 
was stationed beiiind the counter, and 
asked for two glasses of beer to which 
request the old woman responded- 

"No, sah, you caint have it: we don't 
sell it, sah." 


The Story of The Forty-ninth. 

The boys back stepped to a corner 
where they watched the proceedings. 
Soon they observed a young darkey pay 
five cents for a sandwich, whereupon the 
old woman gave him a glass of beer. 
The boys drank but little of the beer, 
but it wasn't because they didn't want 
it. It was because nearly everybody 
was broke. I don't think there was two 
dollars in the whole crowd. 

Prom the whisperings that went on 
about me I soon learned that plans were 
being laid to capture the beer. I induced 
the boys, however, to give up the plan. 

About this time a young negro, seeing 
I had more white on my sleeves than 
any one present, said to me: 

"Is you-all goin' to stay to the ball?" 

I informed him I was and asked him 
how much it would cost. 

"Ten cents a piece, sah," responded 
the dusky son of the south. 

I asked him how much it would 
amount to for twenty men. 

"I can't rightly say, sah, but I'll have 
the secretary flggah it up, sah." 

Evidently the secretary was not strong 
en multiplication, as he has not present- 
ed his bill to this day. The dance, how- 
ever, was interesting, but it cannot be 

For sometime before the muster out 
arrangements were being made, among 
ourselves, as to the route we would take 
in going home. All wanted to go to 
Chicago and over some route we had 
not traveled in going south. The rail- 
road companies had relieved us of all 
trouble in the matter by selecting the 
roads over which we were to travel. We 
were to be taken through Alabama and 
Mississippi thence north by way of St. 

Louis. A kick was immediately and 
emphatically legistered, as this was ex- 
actly the route we didn't want selected. 
Before this each company had appointed 
a committee on transportation. These 
committees visited the railroad offices 
but were unable to get any satisfaction. 
We then decided to ask Col. Uows to 
help us out. This he cheerfully con- 
sented to do. With the colonel as chief 
spokesman about a dozen of us made an 
attack upon the enemy's work. The 
ammunition used was a goodly supply of 
pretty warm words. The railroad men 
threw up all their hands and not any too 
gracefully slid down the pole. 

John H. Perker, a First Lieutenant in 
the regular army, had charge of the mus- 
tering out of the 49th. He was an in- 
fantry oflBcer but he had been deeply 
interested in machine guns and was con- 
sidered an authority on the subject. He 
was known as "Gatling Gun Parker." be- 
cause of his having had charge of all the 
guns of that kind in the operations about 
Santiago. It was said that he went to 
Cuba without orders. It seems that he 
was in charge of several gatling guns 
and a detail of men to man them at 
Tampa. He was not attached to any 
particular command. When the orders 
came for General Shatter to move his 
command to Santiago Lieutenant Parker 
went along, though he had no orders to 
do so. Of course he did the right thing, 
for his guns were needed in Cuba and 
they were not needed at Tampa. He 
was afterwards a m .jor of volunteers in 
the Philippines. 

Colonel Dows was beautifully taken in 
a few days before we left Savannah for 
home. The officers of the regiment had 



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'' , ^^ -^ 


SHE Wants washing To DJ. 




The Story of The Forty-ninth. 


procured a fioe gold mounted saber 
which was presented to hiua in a neat 
speech. It is neediass to say that he 
prizes it very highly. While the colonel 
was held in high esteem by the officers 
of the regiixicnt he was held in the very 
highest respect by theenliated men. He 
fully understood that the men composing 
his command were of the best that Iowa 
afforded. The men seconded his efforts 
to maintain a )iigh standard of efficiency. 
Not only was the 49th noted for its 
efficiency in all duties but it also had 
established a record for the good con- 
duct of its members. The records of the 
provost marshal prove that this regiment 
made the best showing of any organiza- 
tion of the 7lh army corps. So excellent 
was the record that it attracted the 
notice cf officers of high rank in the 
regular army. At least one general pro- 
nounced the 49ch to be the best volun- 
teer regiment, in all things, except as to 
conduct, and in that respect it surpassed 
both regular and volunteer, that he had 
ever seen. 

Who of the 49t'"' will ever forget the 
last night in camp? Pew of the boys 
went to town. They gathered about the 
camp fires in the company streets and 
talked over the scenes of the past year. 
The reminiscences had placed all in 
proper frame of mind to appreciate the 
most beautiful of all bugle calls, taps. 
It was an expert who handled the bugle 
that night and his whole soul seemed to 
be in his work. Every voice was stilled 
at the first note, and when the last one 
had sounded the clapping of hands, 
throughout the entire regiment, was the 
only applause. None obeyed the sum- 
mons to bed, but long into the starry 

night the forms of the men of the 49th 
remained by the camp-fires, alcne with 
themselves and their thoughts. 

Next morning the blankets were rolled 
for the last time and stowed away in the 
trunks and boxes. Soon after breakfast 
the mustering out began. Each com- 
pany was taken to the place of muster 
out. The companies were formed in 
order of rank, the privates in alphabeti- 
cal order. As the names were called 
each man answered "here" for the last 
time as soldiers and took his place in a 
new line. Lieutenant Parker made each 
company a little speech in which he paid 
the highePt possible compliment when 
he said that when he should get another 
bar on his straps he would ask for no 
better men to command. 

As soon as the mustering officer was 
through with us we were marched to 
the building where the paymasters were 
located and there received our pay and 
discharges. As soon as we stepped out 
of the building we were beset by a horde 
of fakers who had every imaginable ar- 
ticle of sale. After fighting ourselves 
through the throng we hastened to the 
city, where we got our dinners at hotels 
and restaurants. Our trains were to 
leave about three o'clock. We bade 
goodbye to Savannah with considerable 
reluctance and left between three and 
four o'clock. Sunday morning found us 
in Chattanooga and by night we were at 
Lexington, Kentucky, and we took 
breakfast at Indianapolis Monday morn- 
ing. We arrived in Chicago about noon 
and remained there until after midnight. 
Of our arrival and reception in Iowa 
on Tuesday, May 16, 1899, nothing need 
be said with the view of imparting any 

The Story of The Fort^^-ninth. 


news. What occured is well know. All 
of northeast Iowa were gathered at the 
home stations of the different companies 
where "something was doing." With 
blare of trumpets, with stirring strains 
of patriotic music, with the stars and 
stripes brightening the heayens, with 
praises of speech, with the loving ten- 

derness of the mother's embrace, with 
the sparkle in the sweetheart's eye, and 
at banquet board, was the boy in blue 
welcomed home. When the sun next 
arose it cast its warming rays upon 
peaceful scenes, and the soldier of yes- 
terday had become the citizen of today.