Colorado's Volunteer Infantry in the Philippine Wars, 1898-1899
Publication Year: 2006
Published by: University of New Mexico Press
This study is based upon my dissertation, and so I must begin by thanking my committee members at the University of Colorado-Boulder. Patricia Limerick, Ralph Mann, Fred Anderson, Lee Scamehorn, Gloria Main, and Lee Krauth all provided vital insights, through their comments and their classes and their publications, and above all by the scholarship they embody. Don Rickey Jr., Doug Scott,...
The First Colorado Regiment enlisted in 1898 to fight Spaniards, and ended up fighting Filipinos. For months, newspaper reports and Congressional speeches had urged American intervention in the Cuban revolution against the Spanish. The destruction of the battleship Maine and mutual declarations of war between the United States and Spain fanned into flame the already smoldering...
1: Remember the Maine
Twenty thousand Denver citizens turned out on 17 April 1898 for the Colorado National Guard’s drill in City Park. War fervor was at a pitch, and the city’s five militia companies were center stage. The guardsmen marched and wheeled in a series of Civil War–style maneuvers until the infantry formed a skirmish line, and with bayonets fixed, charged while the crowd cheered. Gettysburg echoed...
2: To Hell with Spain
The men of the First Colorado had rallied to the cry “Remember the Maine, to Hell with Spain!” Expecting to liberate the Cubans from the Spanish, they instead found themselves headed for the Philippine Islands. Because the Colorado militia, unlike most western volunteers, possessed its entire complement of field gear and campaign equipage, the U.S. Army initially had scheduled the First Colorado to sail in the first...
3: “The Worst Kind of New Woman”
America’s citizen soldiers, quick to volunteer for a campaign in which they believe, have always been equally quick to demand their release from the ranks once their perceived mission is completed. Dr. Fred Anderson has detailed such expectations as far back as the Seven Years War.¹ In the Civil War, impending expiration of volunteer enlistments prompted the United States Army to launch the disastrous...
4: Damn, Damn, Damn the Filipinos
The men of the First Colorado enlisted to fight the Spanish, not to serve as an army of occupation. Manila’s fall, cheered by the troops as the triumphant culmination of their overseas adventure, instead merely marked a passage from military campaign to a sort of peacekeeping limbo. While the United States tried to decide what to do with the Philippines, the Coloradoans turned their...
5: Civilize ’Em with a Krag
Months of rising tension between the Americans and the insurrectos, fueled by uncertainty over the intentions of the United States regarding eventual Philippine independence, exploded into war on 4 February 1899. Each side expected a conflict. Neither side ended up with the conflict it expected. The fighting both intensified and polarized the Coloradoans’ attitudes toward the...
6: And Return Us to Our Own Beloved Home
The First Colorado enlisted to fight the Spanish. While they expected to serve in Cuba, the men willingly fought outside Manila, but with the Philippine capital city occupied and the war ended, the regiment looked toward home. They had responded to their nation’s call, but most had no intention of staying in either the Army or the Philippines. Second Lt. James H. Gowdy complained...
7: Underneath the Starry Flag
In his Manila quarters in October of 1898, Capt. Charles Eastman sat cross-legged on the floor, enveloped in red, white, and blue cloth, hand-sewing a United States flag out of silk he had ordered from Hong Kong. Although the Women’s Relief Corps, Sons of the American Revolution, Colorado College Students, and Brig. Gen. Francis V. Greene himself all had given flags to the First Colorado,...
Page Count: 311
Illustrations: 21 halftones, 5 maps
Publication Year: 2006
OCLC Number: 779183257
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