The Journal of San Diego History
SAN DIEGO HISTORICAL SOCIETY QUARTERLY
Summer 1974, Volume 20, Number 3
From its inception in 1769, San Diego was garrisoned by a military force. When the mission was relocated in 1774, the military continued to occupy the former mission site (today embraced by Presidio Park) which became a royal presidio. Beginning in 1795, a fortification, the Castillo de Guijarros, was constructed on the east side of Point Loma near the entrance to the bay, within the limits of the later Fort Rosecrans Reserve. Both of these posts were allowed to deteriorate and, as a result of civil disturbances in Mexican California, an earthwork was built in 1838 on Presidio Hill to protect the town. Neither the presidio nor the castillo was of military significance when the United States occupied San Diego in 1846, but apparently the earthwork was incorporated in what was first called Fort Du Pont and later Fort Stockton.
The arrival of the entire Second Regiment of Infantry under the command of Lieutenant Colonel and Brevet Major General Bennett Riley in 1849 considerably increased the number of troops in California and emphasized the need to control desertions, increasingly numerous since the gold discovery of the previous year. The regiment disembarked at San Diego, where one company remained, while the others took post at San Luis Rey Mission, which provided “ample quarters and storehouses for everything, and it is the only place in California that can shelter so comfortably [the] whole regiment.”1 Further, it was hoped that the distance of San Luis Rey from the gold fields would help to curtail desertions.
Before mid-1849 the decision was made to withdraw the troops from both Los Angeles and Mission San Luis Rey in contemplation of the establishment of several new posts. Most of the public property from both of the evacuated posts was sent to San Diego, where companies D and I, Second Infantry, then constituted the garrison.2 The Mission San Diego, which had been secularized in 1835 and was badly run down, now became the principal military station. It was not intended that any significant construction be undertaken in San Diego at this time because the army had not decided upon the proper location for permanent fortifications and because of the difficulty and high cost of obtaining building materials in California.3 The mission was occupied because it was available and, despite its poor condition, offered some facilities, thus providing an economical answer until other arrangements could be made. It continued to function as a military post until 1858.
Prior to the Civil War, San Diego was of military importance for several reasons. Initially, in addition to its role in the United States conquest of California, there was the possibility that Mexico might seek to reoccupy Alta California through Baja California. After the Mexican War ended and the disruption caused by the discovery of gold began to decrease, several posts in southern California, including one in San Diego, were considered necessary for protection against Indian depredations. San Diego’s principal significance, however, was as a depot from which to distribute stores to posts in the southern portion of the department. This was particularly true after Camp Yuma (it was designated a fort in 1852) was established on the Colorado River in 1850. Fort Yuma was almost entirely dependent upon stores hauled overland from San Diego until 1854, when arrangements were completed to supply it by water via the Gulf of California.
When Andrew B. Gray, William Heath Davis, and their associates laid out New Town (Graytown) in 1850, they gave land to the government on which a sub-depot for commissary and quartermaster supplies was erected.4 Almost immediately, in order to promote “the economical and equal distribution of the means in the Depots,” the new installation was separated from the command of the mission.5 As a sub-depot it was not garrisoned but was the station for a few officers of the quartermaster, commissary, and pay departments. Colonel Joseph K. F. Mansfield, who inspected the post in 1854, referred to it as “simply a sub depot of supplies of quartermaster and commissary stores, and no troops nor population.” At that time three commissioned officers, one sergeant, and twenty-five civilian employees were attached to the sub-depot.6 In 1858-59, when Mansfield again inspected the military installations on the Pacific coast, the sub-depot was vacant; it was reoccupied in 1860 and was first called the Post of New San Diego and later San Diego Barracks. It was an active post until 1920.
Colonel George Archibald McCall,7 who inspected the posts in San Diego in 1852, had graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1822 and had served with the infantry until assigned to the Inspector General’s Department in 1850. In March, 1852, he was ordered to proceed to San Francisco to inspect military posts in the Pacific Division (California and the territories of Oregon and Washington). He reached San Francisco via Panama in May and, after inspecting the Presidio, went by sea to San Diego, accompanied by First Lieutenant William M. Gardner, Second Infantry, who acted as his aide-de-camp during the inspection tour.8 He arrived on June 3 and inspected the sub-depot on the same day. On June 4 he inspected the mission and departed for Camp Yuma. It is obvious from the brief time spent at San Diego that McCall’s reports rely heavily on information provided by the officers at the posts.
Both inspection reports are addressed to Major General Winfield Scott, Commander in Chief of the Army, Washington, D.C. The original reports are in RG 94, Records of the Office of the Adjutant General, the National Archives, Washington, D.C. McCall’s spelling and punctuation have been retained but most of his numerous abbreviations have been spelled out and the paragraph numbers and headings have been omitted.
Inspector Generals Department,
New San Diego California
June 3rd 1852.
I have the honor to submit herewith, a report of inspection of the Staff Departments of the Army at the Depot of San Diego, made by me in obedience to General orders, No. 13. of 1852.
The “New Town of San Diego” is at present unoccupied by troops. It is now only a Depot of Supplies for the Southern District of California9 and the station of the paymaster of that District.
On this Depot, the following Military Posts are dependent for supplies; viz: Camp Yuma,10 on the Colorado River, distant 226. miles; the Mission of San Diego, distant 9. miles; and occasionally Rancho del Chino11 and Monterey.12
The supplies at this time on hand in the Quarter Master and Subsistence Departments are sufficient for the troops now within the district for one year in the former; and for six months in the latter. But the Storehouse (the only one belonging to the Government at this place) in which the supplies of both Departments are stored, is not of sufficient capacity for the purpose; nor is the building in its present condition of sufficient strength to sustain the weight (either on the 2nd or on the 1st floor) of the stores, which, in respect to bulk alone, it would contain. This building was framed in the Atlantic states and sent out ready to be put up; the timbers being too slight for the support of heavy weights have given way; and it has become necessary, to save the building, to remove a portion of the heaviest articles. These are now placed under the partial shelter of tarpaulins or rough board sheds, where they are not secure from injury by rain; nor are they secure from theft without a guard. I have recommended that additional timbers be put up to restore the upper floor to its proper level, and fit it to sustain a greater weight.13 When this is done, the stores of both Departments may be crowded into the building. But I should recommend that an additional store house be erected here, in order that the supplies of the Quarter Master and Subsistence Departments may be separated, and further room for storage be provided to meet the wants of the service that may hereafter occur.
The District Quarter Master, Captain and Assistant Quarter Master J[ustes]. McKinstry14 appears to be very active and efficient in the discharge of his various and important duties, the chief of which is the providing of transportation for supplies to the different posts within his district. Of these by far the heaviest expense is incurred in furnishing Camp Yuma, on the Colorado river. This service requires the maintenance of a large train at this Depot. For this service, principally, the Assistant Quarter Master here, has two hundred and eighty-six mules. These animals it is true, when not on the road are herded wherever good grazing is found in the valley at distances varying from 5. to 30. miles from the Depot; but when on the road they of course require grain. The trip to Camp Yuma occupies 30. days; and forage must be provided for this period. With this view a Sub-depot has been established at Valle-cita,15 113. miles from San Diego. Here supplies of subsistence and forage are usually placed in advance to meet the demands of the train on its outward and returning march. To this point, in dry weather, the road for greater part of the distance is good; but there are two formidable mountains to be passed, the ascent of one of which, a loaded wagon with doubled teams does not make in less than one day. A great deal of labour would be requisite to effect any improvement here.
At Valle-cita the desert proper commences, and is a sandy plain extending (113. miles) to the Colorado river. On this part of the route, during the summer months, there is no grass and but little water, at long intervals—in the autumn or early winter, the grazing is in many places tolerable and the water is more abundant; but at all seasons the animals will require grain on this portion of the route. After reaching the Colorado, the road follows the course of the river 14. miles, through sand, equally heavy, to Camp Yuma. Six days is the time usually occupied in passing with loaded wagons from Valle-cita to Camp Yuma. The amount carried in each wagon on this route does not usually exceed 1800. to 2000. pounds. From data obtained from the Assistant Quarter Master at Camp Yuma, I have estimated the cost of transporting supplies on this route at not less than $333.-per Ton. This is a heavy expense and should not be suffered to continue; as there is little doubt the post might be supplied by water at one fifth of that cost.16
There is in store at San Diego, a sufficient supply of Camp Equipage for all the probable wants of the district, for one year—the several posts being at this time already supplied with all that their present garrisons require for immediate use. There is no clothing of any consequence here except the old-pattern-full-dress. This, as the troops in the district are almost always employed on field service in the Indian Country, or on fatigue-duty in putting up quarters, will in all probability never be called for.
The number of employees at this Depot and their pay per month varies too considerably, through the effect of ever varying circumstances, to be accurately stated without going into long details.17 But the Accounts and Returns of the district Quarter Master have been forwarded to the proper Offices at Washington City, the duplicates of which I examined here; the chief item of expense is the land transportation to which I have referred. This might be and should be corrected. The Assistant Quarter Master also has here in addition to the number of mules already stated, Sixty four Horses, for express and other service. This number might be reduced.
The Books and Accounts of the Quarter Master Department are regularly and well kept. There are no funds on hand.
1st Lieutenant A[sher]. R. Eddy18 It Artillery Assistant Commissary Subsistence is charged with the distribution of supplies at this Depot. He has been on duty here since November 1851; and appears to have filled his office with ability. His accounts and returns have been forwarded to the proper officer at Washington as late as due; duplicates of which I have examined. Funds are obtained from the Chief Commissary at San Francisco, as required. He has at present no money on hand. The persons employed by him are 1. Clerk at $150. per month; one Sub Agent at Valle-cita at $125. per month; 1 Store-keeper and acting Commissary Sergeant at $70. per month.
The posts supplied with subsistence from this Depot are, the Mission of San Diego and Camp Yuma; and occasionally Monterey and Rancho del Chino. In addition to these, the men (teamsters etc.) in the employment of the Quarter Master Department and detachments of troops passing are supplied with subsistence. To meet these demands there is on hand a supply sufficient for about six months. The condition of these stores is generally good. The pork, however, at this time in store is not of the best quality; and the best pork deteriorates here in a short time; the dryness of the climate causing the barrels to shrink, and the brine, consequently, to be lost. Repacking with new brine is difficult here and often ineffectual for the reason that a cooper is rarely to be found and new hoops cannot be procured to secure the tightness of the barrels after they are repacked. The same thing holds with respect to the salted beef. Bacon is often more or less injured on the voyage and is condemned on its arrival here.
Flour from Chili has kept well here, as I am informed by the Assistant Commissary Subsistence while portions of that from the United States has been lost; the Haxall flour, however, has rarely been found to be injured by the voyage. Were more attention paid to the barrels in shipping flour to California much would be saved; as the Hard-bread which is packed in whiskey barrels always arrives in good condition. Very little rice reaches California in good condition, probably owing to the barrels being bad, and large quantities have been condemned as wevil-eaten and musty. It is, a question worthy of consideration whether it would not be preferable to purchase rice as wanted in the San Francisco market, instead of sending out large quantities from the Atlantic, whereby heavy losses are sometimes sustained. But the market of San Francisco is so variable that no certain calculations can be made on this subject.19
Beans of the best quality are raised in California in abundance; and it is only necessary to make known the wants of the Subsistence Department in order to secure the second year, if not the first, any given quantity at much less cost than those now received from the Eastern States, or from Chili. The other components of the ration may be imported to greater advantage than under any circumstances they can be procured here for some years to come.20
A store-house for the Subsistence Department at this Depot is wanted, as I have already stated in my report respecting the Quarter Masters Department. About one sixth part of the Subsistence stores now on hand is exposed to the weather under canvass or board sheds where it may be stolen with impunity.
A sub depot has been established by this Department at Valle-cito, where a storehouse has been built at considerable expense. This is a miserable apology for a Store house; it is a single room 24 feet by 12. feet, and 10. feet high. The walls are built of green sods laid in a mud-mortor; and the roof is without a better covering; the floor is of mud, and it is altogether unsuited for the rainy season. If this subdepot is kept up, a new and secure storehouse should be built; but I consider it of much importance as already stated in the preceding report that arrangements be made at once for supplying Camp Yuma by water, as also any Military post that may be established at the Pimos villages21 or elsewhere on the Gila river.
The cost of the ration delivered here (at San Diego) is from 173/4 to 18. cents. Beans as already stated might be got here to advantage, the cost of the imported articles being $1.46 per bushel:-and an Article equally good may be obtained here for half or one-third of that sum. The supply of beans on hand here, is in part from Chili, and these also are cheaper than those from the Atlantic.
Pay Master N[athan]. W. Brown22 has been assigned to duty in the Southern district of California. He is supplied with funds (on his own estimates) by the Chief Pay Master at San Francisco, about twice a year. The troops paid by him are those composing the garrisons of the Mission of San Diego, Camp Yuma, Rancho del Chino, and Monterey. These are (June 3rd) all paid to include the month of April 1852, except El Chino, which will be paid to the same date, on the return of Major Brown from San Francisco, whither he proceeds immediately to procure funds.
His accounts have all been forwarded to the proper Offices at Washington as late as due; and have all been settled at the Auditors Office to include 31t December 1851.
The funds now on hand amount to $4410.13. and are in his own possession-kept in an iron-safe.
I have the honor etc.
Geo. A. McCall
Inspector Generals Department
Mission of San Diego, California.
June 4h 1852
In obedience to General Orders, No. 13. of 1852, I have the honor to present herewith a report on inspection of the troops at the Mission of San Diego, C[alifornia].
Captain and Brevet Lieutenant Colonel J[ohn]. B. Magruder,23 1t Artillery Commanding.
Chaplin, Reverend J[ohn]. Reynolds.24
Assistant Surgeon J[ohn]. ]J. Summers,25 Medical Department US Army.
It Lieutenant F[rancis]. E. Patterson,26 1t Artillery-Assistant Commissary Subsistence and acting Assistant Quarter Master.
“I.” Company It Regiment Artillery-Total present 80.
Brevet Lieutenant Colonel Magruder assumed command of this Post, November 4. 1850. The Company is at present composed in greater part of Recruits who joined in March 185227 The present state of discipline and instruction of the Company show that the commanding officer has been attentive to his duties since the Recruits last assigned to the company joined it. They have been drilled as much as circumstances admitted-much of the time of the men having been occupied in making adobes and in collecting material preparatory to building quarters before the rainy season sets in. In the Artillery drill the company is well instructed in the manual of the piece, and fire with rapidity and precision. In the Infantry tactics they are well drilled in the schools of the soldier and company-to this extent in each arm the company appeared to advantage in the several exercises thro’ which I caused them to be put.
The officers at the post appeared to understand their duties thoroughly and to perform them in a very satisfactory manner.
They [the non-commissioned officers, musicians, and privates] are obedient and very attentive to personal appearance-the non-commissioned officers in particular, perform their duties with promptitude and precision, and in all respects give evidence of a very good state of discipline.
The Post and the Company Books are all posted to date and are accurately kept, tho’ not with much neatness, and therefore do not appear to advantage.
The Assistant Commissary Subsistence and acting Assistant Quarter Master has his books and accounts in very good order; the latter have been forwarded to the proper offices at Washington as late as due—duplicates of the same (which I examined) remaining in his possession. His funds are in his own possession, and the balances called for in his last acounts are on hand. He has, for service at the Post, 1. Horse and 13. Mules, together with 2. Wagons and Harness for 6-mule-teams. These are required for transporting Subsistence and forage from the Depot at the landing of the new town of San Diego, distant 9. miles; and for hauling wood for fuel from the mountains, a distance of about 16. miles. The wood is purchased as it stands in the forest, for $5. per cord; and is cut and hauled in by the troops.
The Assistant Quarter Master has all the Carpenters and Blacksmith’s tools requisite for making the necessary additions and repairs to the buildings at the post.
[The Medical] Department is well conducted by the officer here on duty. His supply of Medicines and Hospital stores are sufficient in quantity and are of good quality. There is, however, no Hospital at the Post; and the consequence is that, the sick of this command as well as many invalid soldiers sent here from Camp Yuma,28 on the Gila; and others who are left here sick, by detachments which pass this way, are crowded into two small rooms in the Old-building of the Mission, where they are not even sheltered from rain.
The only building erected here by the troops is a frame one, containing ten small rooms, intended for Officers quarters. This affords sufficient quarters for the officers of one company of Artillery and the Military Staff of the Post. But there are no quarters for enlisted men—and the latter are consequently still in tents. These tents are shedded so as to afford shelter from the sun; but not so as to give any protection from wet and cold during the rains of winter.
There are no storehouses at the post; and the Government stores of all descriptions are now thrown together in the old building, where they are secure neither from the weather nor from theft.
If the troops are to remain here—the necessity for which, however, is not altogether apparent to me—the requisite buildings should be erected without delay. There would be required, Quarters for the enlisted men; a Hospital; and storehouses for the Quarter Master, and Subsistence stores.29 These are absolutely necessary in winter, during which season the rains prevail. It is true that, during the dry season-from early summer until late autumn—neither the troops nor the stores would be likely to suffer, altho’ exposed as they are at present; but the slightest regard to economy in a pecuniary sense, or to the health and efficiency of the troops, alike demand that they should be sheltered. The expense of erecting the necessary buildings will altogether depend upon the degree of permanency it may be thought proper to give them—the material to be used, and the finish considered necessary.
The muskets in possession of the men are in a serviceable state, and are cleaned and preserved in a manner very creditable to the Company.
The Company has a Battery of two 6 pounder guns, and two 12 pounder Howitzers with accoutrements, harness and everything complete and ready for the field—but they have no horses. There is in store, a sufficient supply of ammunition for each arm, for all present uses.
[Clothing and equipments] Are of the old pattern—in fine order.
The grain [for forage] required here, cannot be procured in the vicinity-it must therefore be imported. Hay and wild-oats may be cut in any quantity at from 5. to 10. miles distance.
Subsistence is obtained from the Depot at San Diego, from time to time as wanted—seldom more than a week’s supply being kept on hand, owing to want of store-room. A supply can always be obtained at one days notice. I found all the articles of good quality except the rice, which had been damaged, probably during the voyage around Cape Horn.
I also found encamped at this post “E.” Company of the 1st Regiment of Dragoons, the company having recently been ordered here to await transportation by water from San Diego to Benicia.30
Captain and Brevet Major E[dward]. H. Fitzgerald,31 It Dragoons, Commanding.
2nd Lieutenant C[harles]. H. Ogle,32 It Dragoons.
E. Company, It Dragoons,—Total present 54.
Brevet Major Fitzgerald has been in command of this company for about two years and a half. In the month of May 1851. the horses of the Squadron to which this company belongs (110. in number) were by order of the commanding General, turned in to the Quarter Master’s Department; and they are still running on good grazing grounds near Benicia. Since the horses were turned in, as stated, the company has been in the field in different parts of the State of California, serving on foot. Owing to the character of the service on which the company has been employed, no great attention has been paid to the instruction of the men; the company, however, performed creditably in the drill as dismounted Dragoons.
The company not having horses, I was unable to form any idea of their skill in horsemanship, or their proficiency as a Cavalry Company.
The Company Books are posted up to the present date—but owing in a great measure to the character of the service on which the Company has been employed, the books have not been neatly kept.
The arms of the company—musketoons and sabers—were in good order for field service. The clothing in possession of the men (the old pattern) is generally in good condition, and is sufficient for present use.
The company has no horse-equipments in possession; but the Captain informed me that the squadron, of which his company is a component, might be mounted and equipped for field service; with the equipments turned in to the Quarter Master Department, in May 1851.
I am, General, etc.
Geo. A. McCall
1. R. B. Mason to Riley, March 1, 1849, California and New Mexico, 31 Cong., 1 Sess., House Exec. Doc. 17, 892-93.
2. E. R. S. Canby to L. P. Graham, April 15, 1849; Canby to C. J. L. Wilson, May 20, 1840, ibid., 897-98, 911; 0 No. 16, May 8, 1849, RG 94, Records of the Office of the Adjutant General (OAG), Orders and Special Orders, Department No. 10, The National Archives, Washington, D.C.
3. Canby to S. P. Heintzelman, May 20,1849; August 16, 1849, 31 Cong., 1 Sess., House Exec. Doc. 17, 910, 931.
4. Andrew F. Rolle, “William Heath Davis and the Founding of American San Diego,” California Historical Society Quarterly, XXXI (March, 1952), 34-35.
5. SO No. 46, October 11, 1850, RG 94, OAG, Special Orders, Department No. 10.
6. R. W. Frazer, ed., Mansfield on the Condition of the Western Forts, 1853-54 (Norman, 1963), 105, 138-40. Not all of the civilian employees were stationed at San Diego.
7. For a biographical sketch of McCall see R. W. Frazer, New Mexico in 1850, a Military View (Norman, 1968), 64-76.
8. SO No. 31, May 24, 1852, RG 98, Records of United States Army Commands, Special Orders, Pacific Division.
9. The southern portion of California, “threatened by Indian hostilities,” was constituted a military district on December 5,1851. SO No. 47, RG 94, OAG, Special Orders, Pacific Division. The posts involved were the Presidio of San Francisco, San Diego Mission, New San Diego sub-depot, Rancho del Chino, Monterey Redoubt, and Camp Yuma.
10. Camp Yuma, first established on November 27, 1850, then, after a period of evacuation, reoccupied on February 29, 1852, was a difficult and very expensive post to maintain. It was garrisoned at this time by three companies of Second Infantry. For McCall,s inspection of the post, which includes information on its dependence on San Diego, see “Camp Yuma-1852,” ed. by R. W. Frazer, Southern California Quarterly, LII (June, 1970),170-84.
11. The Post of Rancho [Santa Ana] del Chino was established on September 14, 1850, in one of the ranch buildings, which was rented for $300 per month. It was garrisoned by one company of Second Infantry and was intended to protect the general area from Indian depredations and particularly to prevent incursions via Cajon Pass. McCall to Scott, June 25, 1852, RG 94, OAG, McCall’s Inspection Reports, 1852. The post was replaced later in 1852 by a post on the Rancho Jurupa.
12. Monterey was the first position occupied by the United States in California. The old Spanish and Mexican defensive works were too dilapidated to be of use. The army built Monterey Redoubt west of the town, overlooking the bay. At the time of McCall’s inspection one company of Third Artillery was stationed at Monterey. The men were quartered in the redoubt, most of the officers were in rented quarters, and the post hospital was in a room in the old Mexican cuartel and was “in every respect inadequate.” The troops were withdrawn from Monterey a short time later and when Mansfield inspected the post in 1854 it was occupied only by a military storekeeper. The post was evacuated entirely in October, 1856, but the reservation was retained. McCall to Scott, July 9, 1852, ibid.; Frazer, ed., Mansfield, 139.
13. The building was repaired in accordance with McCall’s recommendations. In 1854 Mansfield described it as “a good quartermaster’s two-story frame building store house.” Frazer, ed., Mansfield, 139.
14. Captain and Brevet Major McKinstry, a graduate of the United States Military Academy, was frequently in difficulty with the army for his conduct. He continued to serve in the Quartermaster’s Department, rising to the rank of brigadier general, volunteers, before he was dismissed from the service in 1863. See Henry F. Dobyns, ed., Hepah California (Tucson, 1961), 103n.
15. Vallecito was on the wagon route about midway between San Diego and Camp Yuma. There was ample water at Vallecito and it was the last point before entering the desert where grass was reasonably adequate. The sub-depot was broken up in June, 1853, and the small storehouse was later incorporated in the Butterfield Overland Mail station at Vallecito. Frazer, ed., Mansfield, 83n; Arthur Woodward, ed., Journal of Lt. Thomas W. Sweeny, 1849-1853 (Los Angeles, 1956), 217-18n. A grazing camp was maintained at Santa Ysabel, sixty-five miles from San Diego, where there was an abundance of grass and a large quantity of hay was put up. There public animals used to haul supply trains across the desert were refreshed. “A few `vaqueros”‘ were hired to care for the animals and none had been lost to Indians. Osborne Cross to T.S. Jesup, August 31, 1852, 32 Cong., 2 Sess., House Exec. Doc. 1, 11, 84.
16. The supply of Camp Yuma from Benicia by an all-water route was accomplished in April, 1852, but it was not until February, 1854, that the service, which required transshipment of goods from seagoing vessels to river steamers at the mouth of the Colorado was established on a regular basis. Godfrey Sykes, The Colorado Delta (Baltimore, 1937), 24-26.
17. When Mansfield inspected the sub-depot in 1854 twenty-three civilians were employed by the quartermaster’s department and two by the commissary department at salaries ranging from $50 to $150 per month. Frazer, ed., Mansfield, 139-40. The salaries paid civilian employees in the Pacific Division were among the highest paid by the army anywhere in the United States.
18. Eddy was a graduate of the Military Academy. He was assigned to the Quartermaster’s Department in 1861 and held the rank of lieutenant colonel and brevet colonel at the time of his death in 1870.
19. In 1854 Colonel Mansfield noted, “Flour frequently spoils before it reaches here from the Atlantic States, and pork does not keep well: 691 Barrels flour and 93 barrels of pork have been condemned since the it January, 1852.” Frazer, ed., Mansfield, 140.
20. The other components of the ration were fresh beef (to be issued at least two days in seven), coffee or tea, sugar, vinegar, salt, soap, and candles.
21. The Pima villages were located on the Gila River above its junction with the Salt River on the present Gila Indian Reservation. Fort Barrett, which existed for a few months in 1862, was the only post established in the immediate area.
22. Major Nathan W. Brown became Paymaster General of the Army with the rank of brigadier general in 1880. He retired in 1882 and died in 1893.
23. Magruder, a West Point graduate, resigned from the army in 1861 and fought for the Confederacy, rising to the rank of major general, CSA.
24. John Reynolds was chaplain at San Diego from December, 1850, to August, 1854. Mansfield reported that Reynolds maintained “a small school [for the post], but is not at all popular, and no doubt the officers would be glad to get rid of him.” Frazer, ed., Mansfield, 144.
25. Sumner, who at this time held the rank of captain, retired in 1886 with the rank of colonel, surgeon.
26. Patterson resigned in 1857, when he held the rank of captain. He served in the Civil War with the rank of brigadier general, volunteers, USA, and died in 1862.
27. The recruits arrived from the east coast via Panama, 250 infantry and artillery recruits being landed at San Diego for distribution to the southern posts. O No. 2, February 13, 1852, RG 94, OAG, Orders, Pacific Division.
28. Camp Yuma was a particularly sickly post in 1852, “the men for a time destitute of vegetables, and deprived of the ordinary necessities of life.” The result was an unusual number of cases of scurvy, diarrhea, and dysentery. Richard H. Coolidge, comp., Statistical Report of the Sickness and Mortality in the Army of the United States (1839-1855), 34 Cong., 1 Sess., Sen. Exec. Doc. 96, 437.
29. When Mansfield inspected the post two years later it was garrisoned by two companies, one in tents and the other in some of the old adobe outbuildings of the mission. The mission church was being remodeled to serve as a barracks and one end of the building had already been fitted out as a hospital. There were still no adequate means for the storage of supplies and equipment. Frazer, ed., Mansfield, 143-44.
30. Companies A and E, First Dragoons, were sent by ship from San Francisco to San Diego in January, 1852. 0 No. 1, January 10, 1852, RG 94, OAG, Orders, Pacific Division. This was done because it was officially reported that Indian hostilities had broken out, notably with the Yuma Indians.
31. Fitzgerald, who did not attend the Military Academy, entered the army in 1839 as a second lieutenant, Sixth Infantry. He transferred to the dragoons in 1849 and died in 1860.
32. Ogle, a graduate of the Military Academy, served as major, volunteers, USA, in the Civil War. He died in 1863.
Robert W. Frazer is Professor of History at California State University, Long Beach, and author of various articles and books, including Forts of the West (1965) and New Mexico in 1850, a Military View (1968). Dr. Frazer received the Ph.D. degree from the University of California, Los Angeles, in 1941 and has taught at California State University, Long Beach, since 1965. He is a past president of the Council on Abandoned Military Posts (CAMP). Illustrations are from the Title Insurance and Trust Company, San Diego, and the San Diego History Center.