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Question. State the amount of preparation made to defend the embrasures ?
Answer. I do not recollect the exact dimensions, but I think the thickness of iron was about eleven inches, with four feet of masonry, and with heavy iron beams in the rear of it.
Question. What was the effect of the firing?
Answer. The iron-plating and stone-masonry were perforated and much broken, and in order to ascertain whether pieces of stone or splinters were thrown to the rear, a screen was there erected, which was perforated in many places by these stone splinters and pieces of iron, showing that there was no safety for the cannoniers bebind those embrasures.
Question. Have you inspected any of the forts and posts in the Military Division of the Missouri ?
Answer. I have inspected nearly all of the posts in the Department of the Missouri, in Montana and Dakota. l inspected the posts through Kansas west, and in the fall and winter of 1872 I iaspected all the posts in New Mexico, Fort Bliss, in Texas, and Fort Garland, in Colorado. In 1873 I inspected all the posts in Montana, Dakota, anl Minnesota ; also all the disbursing offices at the different stations in the Department of Dakota.
Question. In your judgment, are the military posts in Kansas neces. sary to be maintained for the defense of the country or for the protection of the Indians!
Answer. Several of them, I think, are not.
Auswer. Forts Harker, Larned, and either Hays or Wallace, in Kansas.
Question. Are there any posts in Colorado that can be dispensed with ?
Answer. I hardly suppose it would be proper to abandon Fort Garland, although it is not in a position which I would recommend. The position for a fort there is farther north, up the San Juan Valley; but inasmuch as that fort is established, and as we have quarters there, I do not suppose it should be changed now. The buildings, however, are not expensive, and many of them were very much out of repairs.
Question. Going farther south into New Mexico, state whether any of those posts can be dispensed with, in view of the relations between the whites and Indians; or, in view of their use against the Indians, considering the troops necessary, can they be consolidated ?
Answer. Yes, sir. In my opinion Forts Craig, Selden, and Cummins can be dispensed with, and perhaps McRae. Fort Tularosa was recently established on account of the Apache Indians going there. If the In. dians remain the fort should be kept; if not, it is not necessary, and Fort McRae may be required. That depends on circumstances. Fort Union is a large post, and has been very expensive. It was a depot, to wbich not only were supplies for New Mexico sent generally, but was also a place where several companies of cavalry and infantry were kept. I do not think it would be proper to abandon it now. It is of use as a wintering-place. Fort Bascom I do not think necessary, although a camp there has been maintained in consequence of operating in an easterly direction. It was abandoned, and then was re-occupied temporarily, and I think is occupied now.
Question. What is the expense of maintaining these forts in New Mexico as compared with their maintenance elsewhere ?
Answer. They are expensive, like other remote posts in the interior, and they add very much to the expense of maintaining that number of troops beyond what would be required if concentrated into larger gar. risons.
Question. One question is, whether the number of troops in the Territory is necessary, and another question is, whether they ought to be scattered as they are now at the various posts.
Answer. I am decidedly of opinion that the number of troops is not in excess of the demand; but the number of posts is, decidedly.
Question. Wbat do you mean by demand ?
Answer. I mean for the protection of the country, and to keep the Indians quiet, and to furnish that protection which is called for as es.' corts to expeditions, supply-trains, &c.
Question. Could not the line be protected from Colorado into New Mexico without having these posts in Southern and Eastern New Mexico ?
Answer. There is no trouble in traveling through that section now. The fact of hostilities existing between the Ute and Plain tribes of In. dians has been one of the great protections to a portion of the country. It is considered a kind of neutral ground by the Indians.
Question. State the additional cost incurred by reason of having additional posts; in other words, what additional cost each post adds to the Army expenditure, over and above the ordinary expenses of the troops.
Answer. The expense is increased from several causes. In the first place, from the cost of transportation of troops and supplies to and from these places; then, from the extra number of medical officers required and the extra amount of labor, either by the hire of civilians or by enlisted men; avd then there is greater waste and destruction of public property and a far greater expense in the construction, preservation, and repair of buildings. There is also an additional number of officers and men required to discharge the same duties pertaining to a post. I may add that the efficiency and economy of the troops in the service would be much increased, and better discipline would be maintained, by concentrating the troops into larger garrisons.
Question. State as fully as you can your idea of the efficient employment of troops in the neighborhood of any hostile Indians, by reason of concentrating them or of scattering them.
Answer. It is a well-known fact in the history of Indian operations that success has generally attended the movement of troops in consid. erable numbers when prepared for a campaign that followed the Indians into their own country. Where there are many small posts and camps it requires a good deal of time and expense to collect the troops at one point in sufficient numbers to carry out the objects of the campaign. The aggregate of marching to get them together will be, oftentimes, almost as much as is required for the campaign proper. Where the troops are in larger numbers at proper centers, the success of the campaign is much more certain and expeditious, and less expensive.
Question. State the French system in Algeria.
Answer. The system adopted in Algeria by the French, formerly, of scattering small detachments of troops throughout the country, was changed to the system of larger posts and commands, and resulted in the economy and efficiency of the service.
Question. Can you state the probable difference in the expense of maintaining a regiment at one post and of maintaining it at two posts!
Answer. I cannot give tbe exact figures, but in general terms I venture to say that a regiment at one post can be maintained at from 50 to 60 per cent. of what it would cost when distributed in four or fire posts. I think that, when you consider all the elements that come into the question, 50 per cent. would be a fair estimate of the relative cost, exclusive of pay, rations, clothing, &c., for the troops.
Question. Would 50 per cent. be a fair estimate between what is expended and what might be expended in the management of affairs between us and the Indians by a change in that respect?
Answer. I believe that by a proper distribution of troops, and the concentration of them, nearly if not quite 50 per cent. would be saved, with exceptions given.
Question. Has your attention been directed, as an inspector, to this point of concentration ?
Answer. I have frequently expressed my views as here given to de. partment commanders and to division commanders, who bave in some cases fully concurred with me, but hare stated that the demand for troops at different places by the people of the country, and the influences brought to bear, and the want of adequate shelter, &c., necessitated establishing these posts or camps, or maintaining them.
Question. Do you think that many of those posts are established by personal or political influence, aside from the judgment of military men?
Answer. I think such influences are exerted and have their effect. Question. And for local profit ?
Answer. And for local reasons oftentimes. I would mention Fort Benton, where I was last year; that post is nufit for any boily to live in. It is unsafe, and there is reason to believe that unless some change takes place a sad destruction of life may occur there from the falling of the buildings. There is no necessity for this post, in my opinion, and I think the removal of the post has been recommended by General Sheridan. The town of Benton is a small village, whose population raries from, perhaps, a few scores in summer to a few hundred in winter. There are a few merchants, and traders in furs and traders with the Indians; but there are many adventurers and venders of bad whisky; they are, as reported, a whisky.drinking and rather lawless kind of people. They want the troops there because it gives them a sort of protection against Indians, who come in there and get drunk sometimes, as stated; and it gives them a certain traffic from the soldiers, who spend their money there more or less. Oneman there, as I was informed, said he would be willing to subscribe $50 to keep the troops there, and that he could afford to do so from his little earnings. The citizens, I understood, petitioned to keep the troops there. I believe the object is for the purpose of putting a few dollars in their own pockets. I do not think the troops are necessary in the interest of the General Government; but if they are to be kept there it is a solemn duty on the part of the Government to furnish them with proper quarters.
Question. I call your attention to the region in the Nortlı, beginning at the eastern portion of the district of the Missouri, and I ask you to go over the various posts and say whether any of them can be dispensed with. In Minnesota, is there anybody requiring protection there, whites or Indians ?
Answer. The Chippewa, Wahpeton, Sisseton, and Santee Indians there are mostly peaceable and quiet. I do not think there is any necessity for Fort Abercrombie ; Fort Snelling is an old post, and is used as a sort of depot, and for the housing of troops and keeping supplies. I presume that for that purpose it will be considered necessary.
Question. Suppose that the troops were removed out of Minnesota, is there any use then for any post at all there, any more than in Chicago
or Cleveland; could not the troops be supplied from the Missouri River, or from some point on the railroad?
Answer. O, yes; they could be supplied without this post.
Answer. One reason is that you have to keep some of these posts to shelter the troops. There is Fort Ripley, where there is really no necessity for a post, in my opinion, except for its shelter.
Question. What can you say of Fort Wadsworth?
Auswer. That would probably have to be kept up for the present. There are quite a number of Indians in that vicinity, who, to some extent, are cultivating ground, and who want protection. The Sioux come over there frequently; that post, I think, should be maintained.
Question. Is there any other post east of the Missouri River which should be maintained, either as protection for the whites against the Indians, or for the Indians against the whites?
Answer. I have mentioned Fort Ripley and Fort Abercrombie; it would probably be desirable to keep Fort Pembina for the present, on account of oar international relations, and because of the Indians up there, who are somewhat troublesome. But, going west, there is no good necessity for Fort Seward, nor for Camp Hancock, nor apparently much for Fort Stevenson. The Lower Brulé agency might well be abolished; it is unfit for the troops; also Grand River agency; they will be washed into the river, probably, before long. I think there is no necessity for Camp Baker, in Montana. I merely give my views.
Question. Can you give any additional special reasons why these forts you have mentioned should be dispensed with?
Answer. The reasons why, in my opinion, those posts that I have named can be abolished are, that they are an unnecessary expense, and out of position for properly attaining the object for which troops are required in that section of country. The troops would be of more service, and would cost the Goverment less, if they were placed at other points.
Question. Do you apprehend hostilities or mischief, in any of those portions of the country which you inspected, from the Sioux Nation of Indians, or from those affiliated with the Sioux ?
Answer. The Sioux are very ugly and hostile generally, and they will give trouble unless they are controlled by a strong and firm hand. The Kiowas and Comanches, as well as the Apaches, are also of a hostile character, and must, in order to preserve peace, be subjected to military control.
Question. What number of troops, in your judgment, can take care of the Sioux tribes?
Answer. I can hardly say exactly what number; it depends upon how they are placed and the duties required of them.
Question. I mean, placed in the most favorable positions.
Answer. I think that we have none too many troops out there now. Question. Do you think that we have enough out there?
Answer. I think that what we have, if properly placed, would answer the purpose; emergencies may arise requiring more.
Question. Have you any knowledge of the military posts in Idaho, Washington, and Oregon?
Answer. Not particularly.
Question. Or in Utah ?
Answer. I have been to some of them, but I do not know enough about those posts generally to express an opinion.
Question. The forts at Leavenworth and Omaha are both large depots of supplies. Is there any necessity for maintaining both of them?
Answer. I do not think there is.
Answer. They have been pretty expensive. I do not know much about Omaha except from incidental reports.
Question. Which of those forts do you think should be kept?
Answer. I think Leavenworth should be kept, most certainly, on account of its central position and its facilities for receiving and distributing supplies, both by rail and water; and from the fact that storehouses are already established there, and that the Governinent owns the land and has an arsenal there. The Government owns quite a large tract there-nearly seven thousand acres. We have several large fine stone store houses there, and facilities for repairs in the way of shops. There are some twelve large stables, and quarters for officers and men at the headquarters of the department, and for some six companies of troops. Leavenworth is a very central point at which to collect supplies at a comparatively cheap rate, and is one of the best places in the West for collecting cavalry borses, and for wintering public animals.
By Mr. GUNCKEL : Question. Do you know whether Fort Gibson, in the Indian Territory, is still occupied by troops!
Answer. I think it is. I recommended that it should be abandoned, and General Pope did remove the troops; but subsequently it was occupied by a portion of the Tenth Cavalry, and I think it is still occupied.
Question. It is your opinion that it can be dispensed with ?
Answer. That was my opinion then, and I know nothing to the contrary now. If there are any reasons to the contrary, I do not know them. If the troops are to be kept as a police force, to be sent here and there at the request of anybody who may want them, and be used to quell little disturbances that are created from people's own indiscretion, or by liquor-shops, then we have not got balf enough troops. If we had troops we could supply a great deal more for such purposes; in fact, the demand for troops is much larger than the supply.
By the CHAIRMAN : Question. Taking the view of the whole Army, if it is to be reduced, what organizations would you cut down or muster out?
Answer. In answer to that question, my opinion is that the Army should not be reduced at all. If it was to be reduced by organizations, I should cut off two regiments of cavalry. It would be injustice to these regiments.
Question. Could you not better dispense with infantry than with caralry ?
Answer. I think not; cavalry is much more expensive than infantry, and in many locations I think infantry is quite as efficient as cavalry, and more so.
Question. In what places ?
Answer. In any mountainous country. The infantry can get where the cavalry cannot. I have made several expeditions with infantry where I could not have gone at all with mules and horses. For rapid movements cavalry is very necessary, and it is necessary for the Plain Indians.
Question. Are not all the hostile and troublesome Indians located either in the regions of the great plains in Montana and Dakota, and in Northern Texas, Colorado, and Kansas, rather than in mountainous regions!
Answer. The plains virtually terminate at the eastern base of the