72nd Organization Day: 1933
72nd. Organization Day
Canal Zone, Panama, 1933
POST THEATER 9:30 A. M.
Chaplain Frederick W. Hagan.
Colonel James V. Heidt,
Commanding Fourteenth Infantry.
THE STORY OF THE REGIMENT
Sergeant John G. Page,
Headquarters Company, Fourteenth Infantry.
Major General Preston Brown,
Commanding General, Panama Canal Dept.
Colonel James V. Heidt
Commanding, Fourteenth United States Infantry
History of the 14th U. S. Infantry
THE FIRST FOURTEENTH
Four times in the nation’s history the numerical designation “FOURTEENTH” has been borne by regiments of Infantry in the Regular Army. The first Fourteenth Infantry appears on the muster rolls in July 1798. This organization came about through the vote of Congress to increase the military establishment. The first Commanding Officer was Lieut. Col. Nathan Rice. He was known as “Colonel Commandant.” This regiment never survived its infancy, being mustered out of service on June 15. 1800.
THE WAR REGIMENT OF 1812 - 15.
The second Fourteenth Infantry was born out of the flames of war that swept the country during the spring of 1812. This regiment had, in addition to its field officers, its full complement of captains, first, second, and third lieutenants, its ensigns, surgeons, and surgeons mates. The enlisted men and most of the officers came from Maryland. The regiment as a whole or in part fought in most of the battles on the Northern frontier. It participated in the engagements at Fort Niagara, Frenchmans Creek, the capture of Fort George, Beaver Dams, Chrystlers Field, De Coles Mills, Chippewa. and Cooks Mills. When the war was over the Fourteenth Infantry passed again to the Inactive list. It was disbanded on May 17, 1815.
THE MEXICAN WAR ORGANIZATION
The eagles of conflict screamed again during the latter days of 1846 and the opening days of 1847. On February 11, 1847 Congress passed an Act authorizing military expansion. The organizing of another Fourteenth Infantry was begun within a few weeks and completed by April 9th. This regiment was recruited principally in Louisiana and Tennessee. The organization joined General Scott’s column shortly after the siege of Vera Cruz and the battle of Cerro Gordo Pass when the- Army was moving toward Mexico City. It received its first baptism of fire at Contrejas on the 19th and 20th of August. All day long on the 19th, Cadwallader’s Brigade, of which the 14th was a part, held the village under the galling fire of an entire Mexican division. That night a march was made up a ravine and through a break in the enemy line to a position where a charge was made on the rear of the enemy line in the morning. This fight lasted seventeen minutes and the pursuit four hours. From Contrejas the 14th moved to the attack on Churubusco. It was later engaged at Moleno del Rey, the storming of Chaupultepec Heights, and the capture of San Cosmos Gate. The taking of the San Cosmos Gate opened the way to Mexico’s capitol city. During these engagements the organization was companioned with officers who were afterwards to know great responsibility and honor during the struggle between the North and South. The engineer officer who indicated to the 14th its line of attack at Contrejas was Lieutenant Beauregard; a battery which supported it for a time at Chapultepec was commanded by Lieutenant Thomas J. (afterward “Stonewall”) .Jackson; the officer who led the way over the San Cosmos cause-way was Captain Robert E. Lee, and the commanding officer of a supporting platoon of sappers and miners at San Cosmos Gate was Lieutenant George B. McClelland. The Fourteenth Infantry was probably ignorant of the fact that it was flirting with destiny. For conspicuous gallantry in Mexican battles, seven officers of the 14th were brevetted. On July 29, 1848 the regiment was disbanded and its blood-stained colors laid away to mold in dust and darkness.
THE BIRTH OF THE PRESENT FOURTEENTH INFANTRY
Scarcely had the echo of the firing at Fort Sumter died away when President Lincoln, on May 4, 1861 ordered an increase of the Army by the addition of twenty-five Infantry regiments. The Fourteenth Infantry was organized as part of this military expansion. Officers, detailed to recruit the new regiment. met at Fort Trumbull. Conn. during the early days of 1861. Necessary supplies were secured. Recruiting; was begun in .nearby New England towns. Lieut. Col. .John F. Reynolds organized the regiment and was its first Commander. He was later made a Corps Commander and was killed during the first day’s fighting at Gettysburg where a fine statue to his memory has been erected. Colonel C. P. Stone was the ranking officer assigned to the 14th Infantry but he never served with it except for one day during the fall of 1564. The first company of the war regiment was recruited and organized by August 17th. Fourteen days later this number had been expanded to a battalion. In October 1861 the regiment consisting of eight companies and the band moved to a new camp near Perryville Md. (in March 7, 1862 it moved to Fairfax, Va. to become a part of the Army of the Potomac. A few days later the companies were marched to Alexandria and there made preparations to embark on transports for Newport News, Va. to take part in the Peninsular Campaign. Immediately. on disembarking, a march was made to Yorktown. There, the 14th went into camp and remained a month. When the Confederates gave up the fortifications across the Peninsula from Yorktown and fell back toward Richmond, McClelland and his Army followed. In a short time the officers and men of the Fourteenth Infantry were viewing the steeples of the Confederate Capitol from a distance. They remained in camp during the fighting at Seven Pines and Fair Oaks but were ordered across the Chickahominy to assist Fitz John Porter’s Corps in the terrible day’s slaughter at Gaines Mill. McClelland changed his base of supplies from the York River to the James River. The Fourteenth reached the James by marching via Savage Station, White Oak Swamp, Glendale, and Malvern Hill. Soon after the last named engagement the Army was ordered North. Then followed the long and bloody years with the 14th taking part in the battles at Manassas, Antietam, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, Wilderness, Spottsylvania, North Anna, Cold Harbor, and Petersburg. Each of these encounters is an epic in itself. The battle losses of the regiment attest to its faithful performance of duty and conspicuous gallantry in the face of the enemy. Something of the spirit of the organization is revealed in the yell of the Chaplain during a bayonet charge at Fredericksburg, “Give ‘em Hell boys, and may the Lord have mercy on their souls,” was his cry to the rushing columns. Said Capt. “Paddy” O’Connell, the actual Commanding Officer of the regiment during most of the war, “I would take the Fourteenth to the very Gates of Hell, but I want a chance to whip the Devil when I get there.” It was this spirit that caused General Meade. to say to a Fourteenth officer during preparations for the review of the Army in Richmond, “Take the right of the Line. The 14th has always been to the front in battle and deserves the highest honors.”
This period extends from the time of the re-organization of the regiment during the summer of 1865 to the out-break of the Spanish American War in 1898. Between August and November 1865 the three battalions of the Fourteenth left New York City and journeyed to San Francisco, California by way of Aspinwall and Panama City. The regiment was billeted at the Presidio by the Golden Gate for some weeks and then broken up in company organizations and sent to stations in Arizona, California, Oregon, and Washington. In 1866, during a period of Army re-organization, the 2nd Battalion became the basis for the Twenty-third Infantry and the 3rd Battalion the basis for the Thirty-second Infantry. With additional replacements. the 1st Battalion remained as the Fourteenth Infantry. This regiment battled with the Indians and suffered the heat of the desert in Arizona for many months. In 1869 the 14th Infantry absorbed the 45th Reserve Infantry and. moved to Nashville. Tenn.. In August 1870 the regiment was moved to Fort Randall, Dakota. There followed ten years of Indian warfare in this section. For training there was scouting, marching, road building and Indian fighting. For recreation there was the same thing. In the Sioux Campaign of 1876 the columns of the 14th marched 1139 miles in three months. Between 1870 and 1882 Company “A” changed stations 14 times and Company “G” changed stations 30 times. The other companies made changes in accordance with figures standing somewhere between these two extremes. During 1881-1882 the regiment operated from Camp Douglas, Utah Territory, White River, Colo., and Fort Sidney, Nebr. In 1884 the Fourteenth moved to Vancouver Barracks, Wash. It remained here for nearly 14 years. Alaska required the services of Companies “A”, “G”, “B”, and “H” in February 1898. When the war with Spain broke out Companies “A” and “G” returned to Vancouver Barracks.
THE PHILIPPINE INSURRECTION
War was formally declared against Spain on April 25, 1898. On May 25th Companies, “A”, “C”, “D”, “E” and “F” left San Francisco by transport under the command of Capt. John Murphy. They were on their way to the Philippines. Companies “B” and “H” were still in Alaska, and “G” was left at Vancouver Barracks to collect new recruits and organize four companies for an additional battalion. The five advance companies landed on the island of Luzon June 30th and took up garrison duty at Cavite Arsenal. On August 3rd the Fourteenth moved to Camp Dewey, Manila and assisted in the capture of the City. The newly organized 3rd Battalion accompanied by Co. “G” soon reached Manila and the regiment, with the exception of the two companies in Alaska, was again reunited, this time in a foreign land. One night in February 1899 the Filipino insurrection started and lasted for nearly three years. The 14th with a strength of 16 officers and 707 men took its part in the opening skirmishes. It assisted in the capture of Block House No. 14 on Feb. 5, 1899. Most of the fighting that followed was similar to that which the personnel had engaged in during the Indian wars in the 1880s and 90s. Late in October 1899 the field service of the 14th Infantry was brought to a close. The regiment took up its residence in Manila and did provost and supply duty. Companies “B” and “H” joined the other organizations on Dec.:30, 1899. In April 1900 the 1st Battalion was ordered home to stations at Forts Brady and Wayne, Mich.
THE BOXER REBELLION
During the spring of 1900 the Boxer Rebellion broke out in China. Diplomatic representatives of our own and other countries were besieged in Peking. With rejoicing the Fourteenth received orders to proceed to China on July 8, 1900. On August 4th, the regiment as part of the allied forces moved out from Tientsin for Peking, the Americans, British. and Japanese, on the western bank of the Pei-Ho river, and the French and Russians on the east bank. During this advance the Fourteenth took the village of Yang-stun in a characteristic charge. Finally the walled city of Peking was reached. Entrance to the city was accomplished by getting men to the top of the wall and silencing the sharp fire from Chinese rifles from this vantage point. Musician Calvin P. Titus was the first to climb the wall. When the city fell the Fourteenth was selected by the allied forces to lead the triumphal entry. Later Musician Titus received the Medal of Honor and a Cadetship at West Point for his daring and agility in climbing the wall. The regiment did two months of provost duty in Peking and then left China for Manila. Eight months of guarding warehouses, furnishing prison details, doing patrol duty, and other routine duty followed. Then in June, 1901, orders for home were received. The organizations went East to their new homes at Fort Snelling, Fort Porter, and Fort Niagara.
THE PIPING DAYS OF PEACE
For many months the Regimental Headquarters and 2nd Battalion at Fort Snelling, the 1st Battalion at Fort Brady and Fort Wayne, and the 3rd Battalion at Forts Niagara and Porter, lived monotonous lives and did the usual peacetime garrison-duty. Qn February 28, 1903 the regiment again set sail for the Philippines. This time the island of Samar was the home of the 14th until the home trip began on April 23, 1905. Again, the quarters at Vancouver Barracks became home to the officers and men. On Mar 18, 1905 companies “A”, “B”, “C” . “D” “E” “F”, “G”. “H”, “I” and “K” were ordered to interagency duty in San Francisco following the earthquake and fire. They remained until June 1903 when they were returned to Vancouver Barracks.
In February 1908 a third tour began in the Philippines. The usual two year tour of duty was done on the island of Leyte and the island of Cebu. When the regiment returned hone it was ordered to station at Fort Harrison, Mont., Fort Missoula, Mont., and Fort Lincoln, N.D. In 1913 a welcome change came. Part of the regiment went to Fort Lawton, Wash., part to Fort George Wright, Wash., and the rest, the 1st Battalion, to Alaska.
ITS PART IN THE WORLD WAR
In May 1916 the 2nd and 3rd Battalions were moved to Fort Douglas, Arizona for border patrol duty. A year later orders again sent them to Vancouver Barracks to prepare for overseas service. November found the regiment at Camp Lewis. It was anticipated that the 14th would become part of the 91st Division. Such was not to be its fate. Within a few weeks it was scattered over a thousand mile front in Washington, Idaho and Montana guarding utilities and forestalling attempts of IWW’s to interfere with the War program. Late in August 1918 the 2nd and 3rd Battalions were entrained and sent to Camp Dodge, Iowa. Here, they were joined, on October 5th, by the 1st Battalion. The reunited regiment now became a part of the 19th Division. At last the longed for service in France was in sight. But it was not to be. Disappointment came on Nov. 11, 1918. The war was over and the 14th was still at Camp Dodge.
OFF FOR PANAMA TO GUARD THE BIG DITCH
The Fourteenth moved from Camp Dodge, Iowa to Camp Grant, Illinois in December 1918. After remaining there a few months, another move-was made to Camp Custer, Mich. In August 1920 a drive was made for recruits after orders had been given for a move to Panama, and the roll call totaled 606 enlisted men and 34 officers when the transport sailed from Hoboken, N. J. on October 20, 1920. Arrived at Fort Davis, the Fourteenth set to work to create a comfortable, sanitary, and sightly post. There was no end of fatigue. We who celebrate this year’s anniversary in the regiment’s history know what the past thirteen years have wrought. Others have labored and we enter into the fruits of their labor. Looking back on a heroic past may we of the present be inspired to help send down to the future all that has been given to us and an additional gift of our own creation.
CALVIN P. TITUS
Hero of Peking
A Daughter of a famous regiment
holds its Coat of Arms
Athletic & Competitions
DEPARTMENTAL BOXING CHAMPIONS
The Fourteenth’s sluggers were out to avenge the defeat suffered at the hands of the 33rd Infantry last year. Under the careful tutelage of Bob Barcenas they started pointing for the meet in June. In November Barcenas became a M. P. and 1st. Sgt. Harry Green took the reins. His instruction and expert counseling was evident when, in December, the Fourteenth outfought and outhit Sherman, Clayton and Corozal to win. the Departmental Tournament.
In the fifth round of the opener D’Apice, Co. “A”, knocked out Sgt. Antrim, of Albrook, to cop the flyweight belt. Corporal Eddie Kirk, of Co. “K”, took the lightweight title by an easy knockout over Vallitti, of Amador. Kirk was the master all the way. It was a pleasant sight to watch Kirk measure his punches and skillfully maneuver his opponent into position for the kill. Cazar, of Co. “G”, won the welterweight crown over Welsh, of Clayton. after six close rounds of milling. Much credit must go to sergeants Green and Poole for their expert handling of the local boys in the corners.
Although they did not take first place the 14th Infantry track team made a very credible showing in the Departmental Track and Field Meet held at Fort Clayton on May 2nd. In the 440 yard run Bandorick of Company “F” clipped a fifth of a second from the department record of four years standing. Kirk, of Company “K”, added an inch and a half to the broad jump record. The medley relay team, consisting of Brown, Co. “D”, in the 110, Nemuth, Co. “D” in the 220, Bandorick, Co. “F”, in the 440, and DeBorowich, Co. “I”, in the 880, led the field by a safe margin and came within 2 ½ seconds of breaking the Department record. Kemp, Co. “D”, after leading the pack by skillful running at the pole in the mile lost out in the last hundred yards to Spooner of Amador. The mile relay team consisting of Kemp, Kovacs, Williams and DeBorowich took 3rd, after making a valiant effort to overcome a lead lost on the first lap. Foutz, of Co. “A”, took 3rd place in the high jump.
In the regimental Meet, held in March, Company “D” with a team built around Berner, Nemuth, Brown, Nickerson and Kemp, took 1st place honors.
Corporal Chas. O. Lee
Departmental Rifle Matches
Chief of Infantry’s Combat Squad Company “C”
Corp. A. M. Adams
Pfc. W. W. Farrington
Pfc. C. W. Deaton
Pvt. J. W. McCabe
Pfc. R. A. Blackwell
Pfc. W. H. Harris
Pvt. T. J. Kovacik
Pvt. Sam Ghirla
Sgt. Wood Cpl. Ericson Pvt. Guin
298 330 362
Corporal Chas. I. Scruton
Enlisted Men’s Singles Champion
”L” COMPANY RIFLE TEAM
1st. Place – Regimental Rifle Matches.
2nd. Lt. R. V. Strauss
Sgt. Geo. Newbert
Pfc. Eugene Howe
Pfc. C. S. Vantrease
Pfc. E. F. Nowack
Pvt. Steve Zeman
1st Sergeant Marshall E. Bullock
1st Place – Enlisted Men’s Jumping – Department Horse Show
14TH INFANTRY WATER POLO TEAM
Atlantic Sector Champions
The 14th. Inf. basketball team of 1932 won the Atlantic Sector Championship but failed in its hard fought effort to annex the coveted Departmental Trophy. The smart, fast and well-balanced team was clearly the class of the Gold Coast. Only three league games were lost and these on the courts of the enemy. France Field, Fort Sherman and Fort Randolph each managed to take the measure of the Fort Davis “Gravel Agitators” once.
Thirteen high class players formed the squad. Devotees of this popular sport were always sure of an exciting evening’s entertainment to reward them for their support of the Fourteenth’s quintet. Lieutenant Chas. F. Howard, the coach, built his team around a well balanced nucleus composed of Haliprin, Dewey, Williams, Bender and McKiddy. The Team’s record proves that he built wisely and well.
1st Section, 1st Platoon, Company “A”
Sgt. J. E. Glass, Section Leader
Winners of the Department Commander’s
The Seventy-Second Year
The Fourteenth Infantry grows hoary with age. This 1933 celebration marks the passing of its 72nd. birthday. During the three hundred and sixty-five days that have elapsed since our last festivities more history has been added to the organization’s long and varied experiences.
The past year has been an eventful one and full of interesting happenings for the personnel of the regiment. Verily, doth the old order change to become the new order. The world-wide economic upheaval and the daring quest for better ways of doing things has had its way with armies as well as other institutions. The pressure of the times has called for new alignments and new approaches. The fate of the 14th Infantry has been bound up with that of the country and world. It, too, has had to toe the mark in an era of multiplied demands.
Change dealt the first blow on the old, familiar close order drill. A new drill was developed at Fort Benning, Ga. When it-was received at Quarry Heights the.14th was chosen as the organization to give it a first try-out in the Panama Canal Department. One sunny morning “Squads right,” “By the right flank” and that ancient bugaboo “Right front into line” were cast onto the waste-heap of time. The drill field resounded to the commands, “Dress right, Dress” and “Platoon mass left.” There was confusion at first but this soon gave way to ease of execution and orderly ranks.
The Regimental Rifle Match was held in mid-November. The weather was bad but this did not prevent the participants from good shooting and a fine display of sportsmanship. A team of consistent shooters from Co. “L” won the match with a score of 1,534. These lads were closely followed by teams from Co. “A” and Co. “I” who ran up scores of 1519 and 1516, respectively.
The regiment managed to keep afloat during the torrential rains of December. During this deluge and for a time following, the thoughts of officers and men were turned toward Departmental Maneuvers. “To be or not to he” was the question of the season. It was finally answered by the terse order, “To be!” And what maneuvers! Maneuvers with a modernistic touch. The Infantry rode and the Field Artillery flew. However, it is hardly possible for some to forget a certain hike. In company with our friends and allies, the 1st. Coast Artillery, we hit the ‘ard, ‘ard pavement for eight sweltering weary miles.
The enemy was soundly whipped in the Bejuco Sector. Then, the troops moved to Fort. Clayton to prepare for the Departmental Review. It was here that the 14th was given the honor - and responsibility - of demonstrating the new drill to other army organizations of the Isthmus. This was its first public showing.
Soon after our return to Fort Davis the three year foreign service tour became a reality. This news, while turning the plans of the majority of officers and men topsy-turvy, was really a blessing. For almost a year our large turnover, always an obstacle to efficient training, was at a standstill. We had become a real unit rather than a number of men whose time was up almost before it started. Its course now plotted, the regiment plunged into qualification firing and the additional task of reconnoitering the trails of the Atlantic Sector.
The Qualification Season was an unqualified success. Co. “G” led the rifle companies with a high percentage of 99.2. Co. “L” followed with 96.5. “D” Co. led the machine gunners with a tally of 99.2 percent. The regiment had the excellent qualification percentage of 92.9. 132 men, of whom 22 had the high score of 320 or better, made the coveted rating of Expert Rifleman.
Trail reconnaissance's are experiences that try the souls of men, and incidentally, their vocabularies also. Who can forget the first one? A seasick boat ride, followed by a fifteen miles hike, which came to a crescendo in a hill - and what--a hill!! Five hundred feet straight up. Nor can we forget the wanderings of Lt. Schas and his encounter with the snake. Some weeks later - the first time in the past six years - a party from the 14th penetrated the jungles to Cerro-Bruja via the East Ridge Trail. Success crowned this hard trip through uninhabited and practically uncharted wilds. Uninhabited, for the natives fear Cerro-Bruja, thinking the place haunted. It is - by wild turkeys, upon which this expedition feasted for two days.
The month of March brought new grief. The fifteen percent cut was put into effect for officers and enlisted men. This was a real blow below the belt but it was taken with a grin. Never has the morale of the regiment been more severely tested and never has such a test been more courageously met.
It is only fair that the gains be described with the losses. Among these we hasten to mention BEER. Congress and the President gave us the foamy brew soon after the new Administration gained power. In due time, facilities for serving the amber fluid were set up in the Officers’ Club, the Non-Coms’ “Buzzards’ Nest,” and the Post Exchange. There was a grand rush at first but it soon dawned upon the majority of minds that beer was here to stay and that there was to be no such thing as getting to the bottom of the kegs. Since then, coco-cola stock has been taking new courage.
There have been other material gains aside from beer. The Fourteenth Infantry can point with pride to its well-kept grounds, its shiny, tiled kitchens, its beautiful library and its modern restaurant. Noting that officers and men were in need of a place to hunt, fish, and relax from the daily grind, the Regimental Commander conceived the idea of a rest camp. Construction was started early in September.
Today, the regiment boasts about its beautiful “Camp Rioline.” This place of recreation joy is located on a breezy point of land at the mouth of the Chagres River, opposite historic Fort San Lorenzo. Its screened cabins, running water, and electric lights afford a comfortable, delightful spot far removed from garrison routine. Two large, sea-worthy boats, owned by the regiment, make this secluded spot easy of access.
Thus, the year has passed. The Fourteenth Infantry has been tried and found not wanting. Can the government or time ask more?
Members of the Order of Cerro-Bruja after the initiation
The Fourteenth Passes In Review
The following pages of the Organization Day Program contain the complete Regimental Roster as of 1933. Click a link to see an image of the actual page:
Page 14: Regimental Headquarters, start of Headquarters Company
Page 15: End of Headquarters Company, Service Company
Page 16: First Battalion - Company "A", start of Company "B"
Page 17: End of Company "B", Company "C"
Page 18: Company "D", Second Battalion, start of Company "E"
Page 19: End of Company "E", Company "F"
Page 20: Company "G", Start of Company "H"
Page 21: End of Company "H", Third Battalion, Company "I"
Page 22: Company "K", start of Company "L"
Page 23: End of Company "L", Company "M"
Page 24: Band
Page 25: List of Expert Riflemen, Machine Gun Experts, Expert Gunners (37 MM & 3" Trench Mortar
This copy of the 72nd Organization Day program was generously contributed by Paul North, Echo Co., 2/14th, webmaster of the 25th Infantry Division Association., who received it from Kay Thomas, daughter of a 14th Infantry veteran who served in the Canal Zone, Panama in 1933. While many of the photos are not identifiable they have been included to give a sense of the uniforms and activities included in the program. The cover page was so darkened in the xerox copy I received that I could not reproduce it. All of the other pages are represented here.
72nd Organization Day Program, 1933, Canal Zone, Panama
From the library of the Army War College
Copyright © 2012 14th Infantry Regiment Association
Last modified: April 06, 2015