1917 General John PERSHING Ft Sam Houston (PANCHO VILLA

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  • Item Category: Militaria & Weapons
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: Jan 02,2007
  • Channel: Online Auction

Original War Department General Orders, No. 30, February 21, 1917, "By direction of the President, Maj. Gen. John J. Pershing, United States Army, is assigned to the command of the Southern Department, and will proceed to Fort Sam Houston, Tex., and assume command of that department. The travel directed is necessary in the military service."

Signed in type by Hugh L. Scott, Major General, Chief of Staff; attest by H. P. McCain, Adjutant General. The remainder of the Order pertains to the Ordnance Department in the Coast Defenses at San Diego.

Single sheet, printed one-side only. Removed from bound volume of general orders, with typical binding stab-holes and roughness/chipping at edge. Paper quite fresh, crisp and clean.

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From the website of Arlington National Cemetery:

"In 1913, General Huerta had siezed the reins of the Mexican government. The United States refused to recognize the new government and diplomatic relations were severed. General Pershing, about to sail for home after four years of service in the Philippines, applied to the War Department for assignment to active service in the event of hostilities with Mexico. When Pershing arrived in Honolulu on 20 December 1913, he received orders to report to the 8th Brigade at San Francisco, the first Brigade on the roster in case of 'hostilities.' On 20 January 1914, Pershing, with the 8th Brigage, began patrolling the Mexican Border, leaving his wife and his four young children in quarters at the Presidio of San Francisco. After a year's stay at Fort Bliss, Pershing decided to bring his family t The arrangements were almost complete when a tremendous tragedy occurred at the Presidio on 27 August 1915: the quarters were destroyed by fire and Mrs. Pershing and the three little girls died in the holocaust. Only his son Warren survived. . . After the funerals at Cheyenne, Pershing returned to Fort Bliss with his son Warren and his sister Mae and took up his duties as commanding officer again. He sought and found solace in hard work. He finally regained mastery of himself, though it was feared for a while that he might lose his mind. On 15 March 1915, Pershing led an expedition into Mexico to capture Pancho Villa. This expedition was ill-equipped and hampered by a lack of supplies due to the breakdown of the Quartermaster Corps. Although t had been talk of war on the border for years, no steps had been taken to provide for the handling of supplies for an expedition. Despite this and other hindrances, such as the lack of aid from the former Mexican government, and their refusal to allow American troops to transport troops and supplies over their railroads, Pershing organized and commanded the Mexican Punitive Expedition, a combined armed force of 10,000 men that penetrated 350 miles into Mexico and routed Pancho Villa's revolutionaries, severely wounding the bandit himself. T is a prophetic photograph surviving from those days: a picture taken at Nogales of Generals Obregon, Villa and Pershing. Behind Pershing, and to his left stands First Lieutenant George S. Patton, Jr. On 3 April 1917, the United States declared war on Germany. On 7 May, Pershing was ordered to Washington, and later that month he sailed to Europe with the nucleus of a General Staff. . ." ( /johnjose.htm ).

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