The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 69, July 1965 - April, 1966 Page: 80
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Lieut. James completed the line to Rio Grande Cityso (Ring-
gold Barracks) on August 28th, at which time an office was opened
at that point for commercial and other business, with Private H. C.
Winelandsl in charge as operator. On Sept. 12, an office was opened
at Edinburg2 57 miles from Brownsville,83 mainly for repair pur-
poses, with Sergt. E. A. Lewis* in charge. The line is -99.76 miles
long, is of juniper poles 20 ft. by 41/2 in., Kenosha insulators,
Johnson (English) No. 9 galvanized wire. It cost not far from
$8,500oo.oo or $85.00 per mile.85
Lieut. Kane continued his work until July 29, when he was
ordered back to the garrison by the Commanding General[,] De-
partment of Texas., He had then completed 23.64 miles. He was
permitted to recommence work on Nov'r 3rd, and on Dec'r 15th
completed the line to Laredo, a distance by wire of 111.40 miles.
Lieut. Kane was under orders from me 56 days, and although sev-
eral days were lost from delay in delivery of poles, he averaged two
miles of completed line a day-a most creditable record, unequalled
it is believed by the work of any other officer on similar duty in
Texas or elsewhere. On Dec. 15th an office was opened at Laredo,
soRio Grande City was founded by Henry Clay Davis in 1847. The town, county
seat of Starr County, once served as an important stop for freighters on the Rio
Grande. Webb and Carroll (eds.), Handbook, II, 475.
slHenry C. Wineland enlisted on June 19, 1875, and was discharged as a cor-
poral in the Signal Corps on January 5, 1882. Huber to L. T. E., April 18, 1962.
"SEdinburg, on the Rio Grande opposite Reynosa, was settled as early as 1774.
It became the county seat of Hidalgo County in 1852. In 1885, the Post Office
Department named the town Hidalgo, and it should not be confused with the
present city of Edinburg which was founded later in the same county. Webb and
Carroll (eds.), Handbook, I, 806.
"*Brownsville, on the north side of the Rio Grande about twenty-two miles from
its mouth, was made the county seat of Cameron County in 1848. Ibid., 228-229.
84Edward A. Lewis enlisted on March 14, 1872, and was discharged as a sergeant
in the Signal Service on March 14, 1877. Huber to L. T. E., April 18, 1962.
"r'This section of the line was twenty miles shorter than had been estimated.
The distance had been measured in Mexican leagues and then figured as American
leagues. The $8,500 cost was about half what had been estimated. Greely to Chief
Signal Officer, September 17, 1875.
""Various reasons were given for Kane's being ordered back to garrison. It was
said that General Ord, commanding the Department of Texas, was unwilling for
the quartermaster trains to be used for the distribution of telegraph poles, that
the transportation was needed for other purposes, and that the working party
could get no water. Ibid., August 13, 1875.
In i854, the Department of Texas was organized to include that portion of the
state below 33" north latitude, but three years later the whole state was brought
under the department's jurisdiction. The department was evacuated in 1861, when
the commander, General D. E. Twiggs, surrendered to Texas authorities. It was
re-established on June 27, 1865, but on March 31, 1870o, a new Department of Texas
was created as a part of the Division of the South. Checklist of United States Public
Documents, 1789-1909 (Washington, 1911), I, 13o1.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 69, July 1965 - April, 1966, periodical, 1966; Austin, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117144/m1/100/: accessed May 23, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.