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visions, those Spanish beans came in very handy. The regiment had improvised a field hospital during the fight, and the men were provided with first-aid material, which was entirely satisfactory. Dr. James Robbins Church not only took care of the wounded, but ran up on the firing line to rescue them. He was an old Princeton foot-ball player and repeatedly took men bigger than himself on his back all the way to the hospital.
The regiment moved next and had no transportation at all. The mess kits of the men were lost. It was said water ought to be boiled, but there was nothing to boil it in. They didn't get camp utensils because there was no transportation. Colonel Wood obtained about sixteen mules; but in forty-eight hours they were taken away, and the Colonel didn't know who took them. The troops had the regular ration of salt pork, hard-tack and coffee, but nothing else. They wanted beans and tomatoes, and the Colonel took forty of the men, marched back to Siboney, taking the officers' horses and some Cuban horses, and wanted to purchase beans to take them to the men, but there were no beans for sale, nobody to issue them. They wouldn't sell beans unless the Colonel would say they were only for the officers. He didn't think that right, but, however, he says: “I bought all that an elastic stretch of my conscience would allow me to say could be used for the officers, and then I got a boat and went out to the transport, bought five hundred pounds of beans, and all the tomatoes we wanted, loaded them on the horses and the men, and marched back and it was a great thing for the men." The food was not suited to the climate, the hats were excellent, flannel shirts good, but exactly what would be used in Montana in the fall. The underclothes were Canton flannel and not good. The drawers got stiff and chafed the men. The trousers tore when they got drenched, and the men were in rags afterwards. The leggings were good; but it was a mistake in a muddy country to have leggings that strapped under the foot. The trousers were brown and khaki, but were not the real thing. Colonel Roosevelt testified that he wanted to put the men in good shape when they went on to Santiago, and one could hardly realize how well General Young handled the brigade and how he got work out of it. He was taken sick and went back. Colonel Wood succeeded him. Roosevelt succeeded Wood, and says: “I was very much pleased at that. I wouldn't have wanted it until I had had a little experience, but having been through that skirmish, I felt I could handle it."
On the 30th of June word was received to go forward to Santiago. The next morning was the battle before Santiago. The artillery went up and opened fire upon the trench just in front of the regiment. The Spaniards replied with shrapnel that killed and wounded four in the regiment, and quite a number of Cubans.
Colonel Roosevelt received orders to lead the brigade. We quote his T. R.-7.
official report: "My regiment went first, the Second Brigade following the First Brigade along the road to join on General Lawton's left. That was the order we received. General Lawton was attacking El Caney. We marched out behind the First Brigade until we came to the San Juan River, which we forded, and then turned to the right. I got my regiment across just as the captive balloon was coming along down to the ford. There was a good deal of firing going on, and I knew when that balloon got down there would be hot work at the ford, so I hurried my men along as quickly as I could, and my regiment marched at the head of the Second Brigade to the right alongside San Juan River, with the First Cavalry Brigade to our left, between us and the blockhouses and intrenchments on the hills, and the firing got heavier and heavier, and we finally received word to halt and await orders.
“There was a kind of sunken lane going up from the river where we halted, and I made the men all lie down and get under cover as much as they could, and we lay there for, I should judge, certainly an hour. Finally we got the welcome order to advance. I received instructions to move forward and support the regular cavalry in the assault on the hills in front, and we moved forward, and then we took Kettle Hill, as we called it. I never heard the term San Juan Hill until two or three days later. After we went up Kettle Hill, Colonel Hamilton and Colonel Carroll were both shot, and that left me in command on the hill until General Sumner got there. I got my men together and got them volley firing across at the San Juan blockhouse on the hill which the infantry of Kent and Hawkins were attacking. We kept up firing for some time, and I recollect we heard Parker's Gatlings begin shooting on the left and our men cheered them, and we kept up our fire until the infantry got so near the top of the hill that I was afraid of hitting them, and in another minute we saw the infantry swarm over the intrenchments and the Spaniards run out; and then we charged from Kettle Hill across at the next line of hills which was in the rear where there were Spanish trenches and another blockhouse. General Sumner was on Kettle Hill before this; he had been riding along the lines of the cavalry seeing that they went forward. He had command of the cavalry division at that time. Then we took the next line of intrenchments. The Spaniards were still firing at us, and we formed and went to the left, and got on the crest of the chain of hills overlooking Santiago. By that time I was the highest officer in command on the extreme front, and I had six regiments under me. Major Wessels had been wounded, and Captains Morton and Boughton came up and reported to me, and Captains Stevens and McNamee of the Ninth reported to me. I received orders, then, from Captain Howze, of General Sumner's staff, not to advance but to hold that hill at all hazards. Captain Howze was always at the front when he could be. We held the hill until nightfall, when we received orders to intrench.
"We had captured in the blockhouse the Spanish officers' mess, and an extremely good officers' mess it was, better than anything we had had; a big kettle of beef, a kettle of rice, and peas, and a big demijohn of rum, and a lot of rice flour loaves, and so I fed those out to my men; and we also got a lot of Spanish intrenching tools, and we threw up some very aboriginal intrenchments. So that night we had a mild feast on the Spaniards' food"
Q. "Was that the 1st or 2nd ?"
A. "That is the night of the 1st. We intrenched there. As I have seen talk about a retreat being considered from that hill, it is only justice to say that the officers on the extreme front of that line, at least on my part of the line, never dreamed of the Spaniards driving us; they were all perfectly horrified at the idea of retreating. Captains Morton and Boughton came over to me in the afternoon to say that someone had spoken of retreating, and to beg me to protest. I had not heard of it, and did not believe it was true. I knew we could hold that line against anything that could come up in the front.”
There were frequent reports that the Spaniards, on the nights of the 1st and 2nd were "attacking" the Americans. They did, in a kind of way, but it was not an attack pushed home. The skirmishes became active, and the trenches redoubled fire. There was no dream of retreating. The next day and night, the regiment was under fire all day, and about nine o'clock at night there was a tremendous amount of volley firing, and some Spanish skirmishers came out; but though they used smokeless powder, so that in the daytime no smoke was seen, yet at night there were little spurts of flame, and a clearer idea of their whereabouts was obtained during the night than in the day.
At this point Colonel Roosevelt spoke of "the enormous superiority of the smokeless powder over the black powder," adding that it could hardly be realized by those not on the ground, and it was felt that the Spanish artillery was better than our artillery on account of the powder. Colonel Roosevelt says:
“I saw, for instance, the guns on our left open fire, and in a half-minute after the first shot there would be this thick cloud of smoke hanging, and apparently every Spanish gun and every Spanish rifle within a radius of a mile of us would be all turned on that one point, and the gun would be driven out; so that our men-I mean the dismounted cavalry-would say, 'there go the artillery; they will be driven out.' And they were. They were placed back in the rear on the following day, but they were driven off the firing line where the infantry were. On the other hand, the Gatlings, which were managed by Captain Parker, were fought on the extreme front of the skirmish line; he fought his Gatlings right up on the extreme front, just as far as anybody could go. He did magnificently. He was on the right of our regiment. We had our two Colts, and he came and helped us put our two Colts in position. We didn't