The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003 Page: 278
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
The First Texas established a camp-named Camp Egbert in honor of
Col. Harry C. Egbert, who had been killed in action in the Philippines-
at the foot of 45th Street and waited for all the necessary paperwork to be
completed. At last, by April 18, the final muster-out rolls had been com-
pleted and the men paid off. They were the last Texans to leave the serv-
ice. Over six thousand Texans served in Texas regiments during the Span-
ish-American War and approximately four thousand more served in
various regular and immune regiments and in the Rough Riders.9
One Texan probably summed up the experience for all of his fellows
when he wrote: "The experience, the sights, the hardships, and happiness
which we have passed through were all new to us. We left home blindly,
knowing absolutely nothing [about] what was before us, and although we
were never in any battle, it was not our fault. We volunteered at the call,
we were ready, willing to go where ever we were sent, and although we
never reached the battle field, yet we fought disease and death in other
forms, hunger, hardships, the heat, and extreme cold, mosquitoes and
flees [sic], and in fact most every thing that there is to make life miserable.
We have passed through it all, and now it is over with the experience I
have passed through is worth many a dollar to me."''o
The collective experience of Texas troops during the Spanish-Ameri-
can War was not very different from that of most of the volunteer soldiers
in this conflict. Those Texas guardsmen, for instance, who refused to en-
list were certainly not unique. Similar scenes played out all across the
country. Officers and men of New York City's elite Seventh Regiment vot-
ed overwhelmingly not to participate in the war, and 6o percent of the
membership of the Thirteenth New York did the same. Only about half of
Wisconsin's guardsmen came forward, and Mississippi recruiters had to
travel all the way to Chicago to fill the last three hundred slots of their
The fact that none of the Texas infantry regiments saw combat against
the Spaniards was also in keeping with the norm. The regular army con-
ducted most of the actual fighting. Volunteer infantry regiments from on-
ly a third of the forty-five states saw combat against Spanish forces. Like
their infantry counterparts, the Lone Star horseman also saw no action, as
but few volunteer cavalrymen did. Only three other states even raised cav-
alry regiments and none of them saw any overseas duty. Only the Rough
Riders and a handful of individual cavalry troops actually experienced
*, The number was 6,360, with "an additional number of nearly four thousand who joined the
regulars, the Rough Riders and the Immune Regiments." Wozencraft, Report of the Adjutant-Gener-
,0 Gentzen Diary, Apr. 16, 1898.
" Leffler, "From the Shadows into the Sun," 147, 153, Jerry Cooper, "National Guard Reform,
The Army, and the Spanish-American War: The View from Wisconsin," Milztary Affazrs, 42 (Feb.,
1978), 22; Donald Brooks Kelley, "Mississippi and 'The splendid little war' of 1898."Journal of Mzs-
szsszppz Hstory, 26 (May, 1964), 131.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003, periodical, 2003; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101223/m1/330/: accessed September 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.