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Military Quotes

If our soldiers are not overburdened with money, it is not because they have a distaste for riches; if their lives are not unduly long, it is not because they are disinclined to longevity.

-- Sun Tzu

Spanish AmericanWe are out today on the scout on the mountain, about thirty miles from Guantanamo, and probably will not see camp again for about ten days. I have eight men with me, and have made a report of our position and that of the enemy and have sent the same to our captain at Guantanamo.
At present I am under orders of the noted Cuban, General Garcia, and he will give me a guide of ten or twelve Cubans when I return to our camp.
While on the scout we are never closer than two miles to the enemy. We have very large field glasses and our duty is to ascertain the exact positions of the Spanish and then return to report at camp.

Our first landing in Cuba was an exciting and hazardous undertaking. The bay of Guantanamo was our first landing place, and here lay in hiding until about 2 o’clock in the night. Then the boats of Sampson’s fleet, Marblehead, Suwanee, Oregon and torpedo boat Porter began a bombardment of the city of Guantanamo. They kept up a steady fire until at daybreak, at a given signal, 700 United States Marines charged upon the fort. For thirteen hours we fought with Yankee pluck and about 7 o’clock the next evening the Spaniards gave way and retreated. Then our boys gave such a yell of victory that it could be heard a good mile. That yell I shall never forget as long as I live.

Within five hours afterwards we had the city under control with 100 killed and 169 wounded on the Spanish side and but six killed and twelve wounded on our side. You observe that the Spaniards are remarkably good fighters, but they cannot hit a flock of barns, as they shoot too high. I could hear the bullets whiz over our heads.

On the following day (Sunday), June 10, about 5 o’clock, the Spaniards made a charge on us 3000 strong. The fight lasted until Monday morning about 10 o’clock, when the enemy withdrew with many killed and wounded. Our loss was small, only seven men being wounded. On Thursday, June 13, in the afternoon, they fired on our pickets, killing two men. One poor fellow had twenty-one shots in him and the other had fourteen. This made our blood boil, of course, and we went at them with the spirit of brutes, killing sixty and wounding ninety-five. On our side two were killed and eighteen wounded. On Saturday, the 15, I was sent on the scout to General Garcia, as I told you in the beginning of my letter. I will tell you for what I went when I return home. This letter may never reach home, but if it does, let me know if the United States army has started for Cuba or not, for I can hear nothing here of the movements of the troops.
Note: by Marine Sergeant Bloomfield W. Riddle.


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This Day in History
1701: Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac established Fort Ponchartrain for France on the future site of the city of Detroit, Michigan, in an attempt to halt the advance of the English into the western Great Lakes region.

1766: At Fort Ontario, Canada, Ottawa chief Pontiac and William Johnson signed a peace agreement.

1862: Rear Admiral Farragut's fleet departed its station below Vicksburg, as the falling water level of the river and sickness among his ships' crews necessitated withdrawal to Baton Rouge and New Orleans.

1863: Battle at Battle Mountain, Virginia.

1863: Rear Admiral Dahlgren's ironclads and gunboats, including U.S.S. New Ironsides, Weehauken, Patapsco, Montauk, Catskill, Nantucket, Paul Jones, Ottawa, Seneca, and Dai Ching, bombarded Fort Wagner in support of Army operations ashore.

1864: Confederate General Jubal Early defeats Union troops under General George Crook to keep the Shenandoah Valley clear of Yankees.

1864: Confederate guerrillas captured and burned steamer Kingston, which had run aground the preceding day between Smith's Point and Windmill Point on the Virginia shore of Chesapeake Bay.

1866: Tennessee became the first state to be readmitted to the Union after the Civil War.

1936: CGC Cayuga was ordered to San Sebastian, Spain as the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War necessitated the evacuation of U.S. citizens.

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