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 Post subject: Grigsby's Cowboys
PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 11:12 pm 
Теперь предлагаем бесплатную ежедневную маммографию!
Теперь предлагаем бесплатную ежедневную маммографию!
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Joined: Sun Aug 05, 2007 9:04 pm
Posts: 8236
Location: On the couch a lot now that I'm retired
Since we haven't much in the way of posts here, it's time for something I found through 3 or 4 years of genalogical and military research. Melvin Grigsby is one of wifey's ancestors, and I made the following for her & her sisters:

When Spain declared war on the US in 1898, the army was poorly prepared, having only about 24,000 effective troops who were mostly posted to the western part of the country and poorly equipped.

A proposal was made to the War Dept to recruit regiments of volunteer cavalry made up of actual cowboys - or cowpunchers as they preferred to be called in those days. The reasoning was sound as such men would already be familiar with horses, firearms and outdoor life.

The War Dept authorized three regiments of volunteer cavalry. The First was commanded by Col. LEONARD WOOD who was largely upstaged by his 2nd in command, Col. THEODORE ROOSEVELDT. The First Regiment was comprised of hand-picked veterans - mostly ex-Confederate cavalry who were aided by scouts with Indian War experience, and oddly - a number of New York City athletes.

The Second Regiment was commanded by Col TORREY who picked his men from Wyo & Colo ranches.

The Third Regiment was commanded by Col. MELVIN GRIGSBY, whose men came from North & South Dakota as well as Nebr & Montana.

While the concept suggested the regiments be entirely of cowboys, they accounted for about half of the total with miners being the next largest occupation.

The three regiments assembled and embarked to their "camps of instruction". Col Grigsby's regiment was sent to Camp Chickamauga, Ga. Since the army was so poorly prepared for war, the recruits drilled for weeks in civilian clothes, and sentries walked their posts with clubs instead of rifles.

Grigsby's Regiment was finally fully equipped, but by that time, the war had run its course. All casualties but two were from typhoid fever... one man drowned and the other was run over by a streetcar. The western horses also did poorly. The regimental veterinarian at one point listed over 40% of all mounts ill with equine influenza and "malaria fever".

When the regiment mustered out, only a few elected to join the regular army to fight Moro insurgents in the Philippines.

Of the three regiments, only Col Rooseveldt's actually entered combat. With the military so poorly prepared, transportation was at a premium, but 'Teddy' had recently been under secretary of the Navy and was able to pull the proper strings to get his regiment to Cuba.

Both remaining regiments languished in horrible conditions with much resulting sickness and poor morale. This brief narrative only gives the barest insights to this little known part of /american military history.

If anyone has a student in the family who would like to write a history paper of this, I will gladly provide a bibliography. SW

Darkness is all around us and enemy are just beyond the perimeter.

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2007 3:06 am 
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Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2007 12:23 pm
Posts: 1303
Location: Western Oregon
I have always been interested in the Spanish American war. It represents a time of transition for the US and its military. Black powder Sringfields serving with Krags. The Great White Fleet. America feeling its oats and becoming a world power.

"The great object is, that every man be armed."
- Patrick Henry

"Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the people's liberty teeth ...... firearms everywhere restrains evil interference. When firearms go, all goes..."

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