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502. The Officer of the Day is never dispensed with, he must take his tour by land or sea, on the march, or on transport, and under all circumstances under which the command is placed. His duties are slightly modified according to circumstances, but he has general charge of the order and discipline of the command for the day, and the posting and instruction of the guards for the preservation of the same. Where there is no Provost Marshal, he performs the duty that usually belongs to him, and takes charge of prisoners, and arrests offenders and depredators, and has the stragglers and shirks taken care of.
503. The Commanding Officer is generally greatly dependent upon the Officer of the Day, and upon the manner in which he performs his duty; especially in the vicinity of the enemy, and in time of danger, he can relieve him of much care and anxiety, and in more quiet times at rest or on the move, the comfort of every one is affected by the order, quiet and cleanliness, which the Officer of the Day enforces. Captains may be detailed to perform the duties of Field Officer of the Day, in the absence of a sufficient number of field officers. (Reg. 604.) For the performance of this duty, see Par. 514.
504. THE duties specially provided by law and regulations for the Major are very few, aside from what has been laid down for other officers, which, of course, he should be familiar with, if he has not really served in the lower grades. The Major bears the same relation to the Colonel of the Regiment that the Second Lieutenant does to the Captain, and he is the Colonel’s assistant in all duties that do not properly pertain to a company officer, and yet may be entrusted to a subordinate.
505. The command of small detachments, consisting of more than one company and less than a regiment, is usually entrusted to him. He then becomes the Commanding Officer, and is responsible in the same degree. Two companies may ordinarily be considered a Major’s command, and officers holding the Brevet rank of Major, having such a command, were formerly authorized to draw the pay of Major. (Reg. 1353.)
506. The Tactics assigns to the Major an unimportant position in the line of battle, where he assists in directing alignments and movements, but does not exercise command, except in the absence of the other Field Officers, senior to him. The following are the duties that are by law required of the Major, viz.:
1. Administrator of the effects of deceased officers.
2. Field Officer of the Day.
3. Field Officer’s Court-Martial.
507. ADMINISTRATOR.—When an officer dies, or is killed in the service of the United States, the 94th Article of War requires that the Major, or in his absence, the officer second in command, shall secure the effects of the deceased, and make an inventory of the same, and transmit it to the War Department. This Article, and Article XVI of the Regulations, is all the Law and Regulation on this subject, and leaves the matter exceedingly obscure to an inexperienced officer, if the case is in the least complicated.
508. The local Laws always provide for an Administrator, when a person dies, and should the local authorities appoint one, in most cases the Major would have a very simple and temporary duty to perform. Should the local authorities, however, neglect to appoint an Administrator, it would be necessary, often, for the Major to apply for the appointment, in order to enable him to settle the deceased officer’s affairs. This would be the case where the officer died possessed of real estate and outstanding accounts in the neighborhood, and other kinds of property not purely personal, or in his immediate possession.
509. Usually officers do not have any more property with them than their personal effects, and their death is seldom so sudden, but when they can give directions as to what shall be done with it. In case, however, there is no opportunity of knowing their wishes, the officer who is entrusted with the duty, and who is usually directed by the Commanding Officer to do so, takes possession of all the property he can find, makes an inventory of it, and sends a copy to the Adjutant General, and one to the proper heirs of the deceased, and endeavors to ascertain from the latter their wishes in the case.
510. The officer, in the absence of any instructions or knowledge of the relatives of the deceased, makes the best disposition of the effects that he can. The money in his possession, and such as is derived from the sale of articles, can be turned over to some paymaster, and a duplicate of the receipt forwarded to the Adjutant General of the Army. If, pending the settlement of such an account, the officer is ordered away, it is the duty of the Commanding Officer to detail some other officer to relieve him, and to receipt for the effects.
511. The regulations are not very definite on this duty, and it is suggested where a large interest is involved, and civil law is in full force in the neighborhood to pursue the course laid down by the law of the place. The 94th Article is only intended to apply in the absence of law, in times of war, and such cases where no great money value is involved.
512. Where an officer has the effects of a deceased officer to turn over to the legal representatives, he is not required to wait for letters of Administration, but may pay to the proper heirs in the following order: 1st, widow; 2nd, children; 3rd, brothers and sisters; 4th, father and mother; to more remote heirs, letters of Administration are necessary. The testimony of two disinterested witnesses is sufficient to establish the fact as to who are the heirs, and the money, or other effects, may be turned over to one of the heirs, on the written application of the others, where there is more than one.
513. Payment will not be made to an Administrator, without their consent, when it can be made to the heirs; and an Administrator appointed without the consent of the heirs should not be recognized. An Administrator, before payment is made to him, should be required to file the original letter of Administration, or a copy thereof duly certified, or a certificate from the Clerk of the Court from which it is issued, that it appears by the records of said Court that he has been legally empowered to act as Administrator on the deceased officer’s effects.
514. FIELD OFFICER OF THE DAY.—All the Field Officers of the Regiments constituting the Brigade, except the Commanding Officers of the Regiments, are placed on a Roster for this duty, and are regularly detailed by the Adjutant General of the Brigade, or Division. (Reg. 564.) When necessary, Captains may be added to this Roster (Reg. 604.)
515. Field Officers of the Day have special charge of the Grand Guard of the Brigade, and they perform the same duties with reference to the Brigade Camp, that the Officer of the Day does to the Regimental Camp and Guard. He receives his instructions from the Commander of the Brigade or Division.
516. He should be present when the Guard is paraded, and although there is seldom as much ceremony in the forming or mounting of a Grand Guard as in the case of the Police Guard, still the Field Officer of the Day should be present, and supervise, and give such orders with regard to the posting of the Guard as may be necessary.
517. He should visit the Sentinels and posts of the Supports and Reserves of the Grand Guard, soon after they are posted, and at least once during the night. (See page 20.) He should see that the right and left of his line connects with the Guards on the right and left, and that the system of communication is well understood.
518. In the field in time of actual hostilities, the Field Officer of the Day has an important task to perform, involving much responsibility, danger, and fatigue. He should be the first to be informed of what is transpiring on his line, and yet not delay the information, if important, from reaching the Brigade and Division Commander.
519. He should have his line of intelligence in perfect working order, either through telegraph, signals, or mounted couriers. In a large army the Division should have a General Officer of the Day, to whom he should be required to report, and from whom he would receive orders. He should transmit such orders as may be necessary to the Regimental Officer of the Day, who should be subject to a general supervision of the Field Officer of the Day.
520. In times of peace, the Field Officer of the Day would not be often required, as troops rarely be quartered together in such large bodies, unless occasionally for the purpose of instruction, when the duties of this officer would also be a part of the course of instruction.
521. FIELD OFFICER’S COURT-MARTIAL.—This Court was authorized by the Act of July 17, 1862, Section 7, and a strict construction of this law would do away altogether with Regimental and Garrison Courts-Martial. Such a construction, however, would place all commands wherein there is no Field Officer of the same Regiment to which the offender belongs, beyond the power of punishing the lighter offenses in a legal way. The following is the Section of the Law referred to:
“SECTION 7. And be it further enacted, That hereafter all offenders in the Army, charged with offenses now punishable by a regimental or garrison court-martial, shall be brought before a field-officer of his regiment, who shall be detailed for that purpose, and who shall hear and determine the offense, and order the punishment that shall be inflicted; and shall also make a record of his proceedings, and submit the same to the brigade commander, who, upon the approval of the proceedings of such field-officer, shall order the same to be executed: Provided, that the punishment in such case be limited to that authorized to be inflicted by a regimental or garrison court-martial; and provided, further, that in the event of there being no brigade commander, the proceedings as aforesaid shall be submitted for approval to the Commanding Officer of the Post.”
522. The act was manifestly intended to provide a means of summary punishment for the light offences heretofore triable by Regimental and Garrison Courts-Martial. The conditions necessary in order that an offender may be tried by this Court, are, that the officer presiding is a Field Officer of the same Regiment to which the prisoner belongs, and that the offense is such as would heretofore have been triable by a Regimental or Garrison Court, and that there is a Post or Brigade Commander to detail the Field Officer, and to act on the proceedings. If these conditions cannot be fulfilled, the custom has been to organize a Regimental or Garrison Court, as the case may require, notwithstanding that the strict letter of the Law has done away with these Courts. The opinion of the Judge Advocate General sustains this custom. (See Digest of Opinions, Judge Advocate General.)
523. No form of record has as yet been authorized, or directed for this Court, but custom has dispensed with recording the evidence as in other Courts, and the Judge Advocate General has decided that it is not necessary to spread the evidence upon the record. (Opinion of Judge Advocate General, December 7, 1864.) The general form of record, however, must be adhered to, as in other Military Courts, and there is no objection to recording the evidence if the officer chooses to do so.
524. The record must give the order detailing the Field Officer, the charge upon which the prisoner has been tried, and the plea, finding, and sentence, in the case; these points cannot be omitted, and it may be as full as provided in the form required for other Courts-Martial, without objection.
525. The following form will serve to indicate the most condensed style of record:
“Proceedings of a Field Officer’s Court-Martial, convened at Fort Columbus, N.Y., in obedience to the following Order, viz.:
“HEADQUARTERS, FORT COLUMBUS, N.Y.,
“Oct. 20th, 1865.
“A Field Officer’s Court-Martial is hereby directed to be held at this post daily, until further orders, for the trial of such prisoners as may be brought before it.
“Detail for the Court.
“Major A____ B____, _th U.S. Infantry.
“By order of Col. C____ D____, _th U.S. Infantry, Commanding Post.
“1st Lieut. and Adj., _th U.S. Infantry.
“FORT COLUMBUS, N.Y.,
“Oct. 21st, 1865.
“The Court met in obedience to the foregoing order. Private John Smith, Company A, _th U.S. Infantry, was arraigned on the following charge and specification, viz.:
“CHARGE.—Conduct to the prejudice of good order and Military discipline.
“SPECIFICATION.—That Private John Smith, of Company A, _th U.S. Infantry, did behave in a boisterous and disorderly manner in his quarters, after taps. This, at or near Fort Columbus, N.Y., on or about the 19th of October, 1865.
“To which charge and specification the accused pleads—Not Guilty.
“After mature deliberation on the evidence adduced, the Court finds the accused, as follows:
“Of the specification—Guilty.
“Of the charge—Guilty.
“And the Court does, therefore, sentence him, Private John Smith, Company A, _th U.S. Infantry, to forfeit to the United States ten dollars of his pay, and to be confined at hard labor for the period of ten days.
“Major, _th U.S. Infantry.”
526. This record should be made up without delay, and forwarded to the authority ordering the Court, for his approval or disapproval, and such action is final, and ends the case. In the majority of cases the Commanding Officer of the Post would order the Court, and be the reviewing officer. The Law is very defective in its provisions, for a Commanding Officer who cannot detail a Field Officer has no power under this Law to punish for the minor offenses; nor is there any provision for a case where there is no Post and no Brigade Commander; the only remedy then is to resort to Regimental or Garrison Courts.
527. The trial must be conducted as in other Courts-Martial. The rights of the prisoner are the same: he can object to be tried by the Field Officer, and the written objection should be forwarded with the proceedings, although it is not probable that an objection in such cases would be considered either by the officer or the reviewing authority.
528. Witnesses are called, sworn, and examined in the same way, and in the same order, as in other Courts. The Court should be conducted with the same dignity and decorum, and with the same scrupulous regard for the rights of the prisoner and the Laws, regulations and customs pertaining to Courts-Martial.
529. IN the English Service the Lieutenant-Colonel is the Commander of the Regiment. In our Service there are no duties specified by Law for this officer. In practice he takes the place of the Colonel in his absence, and succeeds to the same powers and responsibility. He should therefore be equally well informed in the duties of Regimental Commander, as the Colonel. When the Colonel is present, the Lieutenant-Colonel performs such duties as he may be required by the Colonel, being such usually as pertain to the Commander of the Regiment, and yet capable of being attended to by a Subordinate.
530. The Lieutenant-Colonel, when not the senior officer of the Regiment, has precisely the same kind of duties that the Major is required to perform: Field Officer of the Day, the Command of Detachments, Field Officer’s Court-Martial, etc. Four companies are sufficient to constitute a Lieutenant-Colonel’s Command, when the Regiment is divided about among several posts.
531. As he stands nearest the Colonel, and is his First-Lieutenant, and because much the most important duty he has to perform is to take command of the Regiment in the absence of his superior, what is laid down for the Colonel, and the Commanding Officer is equally applicable to him, and should be quite as well understood by him; it being in reality just what he should know, even in his subordinate capacity.
532. THE Colonel is the senior officer, and therefore the most important in the Regiment, and the Regiment takes its character and standing from him. A Regiment, no matter how well trained under a competent commander, will soon deteriorate and suffer in reputation under an incompetent man, and it is fair to presume that when a Regiment possesses a bad name, it is due to the incompetency of its commander. The terms Colonel and Regimental Commander are synonymous.
533. The Colonel’s peculiar and exclusive duty is to command the Regiment, and it is only his duty as commander that will here be considered. His duty in other capacities will be found under the proper headings. It is proper to state, however, that a Colonel may be Commanding Officer of a Brigade, or Division, or Department, President or member of a Court-Martial, or chief of an independent expedition, by special assignment.
534. Like the company, the command of the Regiment has two distinct varieties of duty relating to it, that call for distinct and separate qualifications in its commander, viz., Government and Administration, and under these general heads we will consider the subject.
535. UNDER this general heading will be considered the following special headings pertaining to the government of a Regiment, viz.:
Instruction in Tactics.
Discipline, including Rewards and Punishments.
Appointment and Reduction of Non-Commissioned Officers.
Parades, Reviews, Inspections, and Musters.
536. ORGANIZATION.—The Law fixes the organization of the Regiment, and it is different for each arm of the Service, and there may be different organizations for the same arm. The changes in the Military Art have required corresponding changes in the organization of armies, and many changes have been made of late years in our service. There are two organizations each for the Artillery and Infantry, and the Cavalry arm has but recently received the same organization throughout.
537. There is no difference in the general principles of forming a Regiment in the Regular or Volunteer Service. In the former, the officers are appointed by the President of the United States, and confirmed by the Senate; in the latter, the Governors make the appointments. In both Services the Law authorizing the troops to be raised, govern the organization, and both, when completed, are generally inspected by an Inspector-General, or a Mustering Officer, who would reject all officers and men in excess of the legal organization.
538. The raising, equipping, and preparation for Service of a Regiment, is a task of no small dimensions, even where the Colonel is a competent man, assisted by experienced Captains, but when from the Colonel down, all are called suddenly from civil pursuits to organize, and proceed to the Field of War, as most of the Regiments were required to do, in the late great Civil War; it is not to be wondered at that disasters occurred upon the field, and great loss of life resulted in the Hospitals of the Camps.
539. It will be well to state here the main points to be regarded in the organizing of a Regiment, as was required finally after much experience, by the War Department, during the Rebellion. Governors of States adopted their own systems of recruiting and appointing, but before a Regiment was considered in the Service, it was first inspected and mustered by a duly authorized officer, generally of the Regular Service, whose duty it was to see that the Regiment conformed to the Law in its organization, and that it was properly supplied with the necessary equipments, and that it was neither over-supplied, nor deficient in its allowances. The pay and emoluments of officers and men commenced generally from the date of muster-in. Provision, however, was made for the expenses incurred in recruiting the men out of the funds appropriated for that particular purpose.
540. It was found that in many cases the officers who possessed the means and influence to raise men under the Volunteer System were unfit to command them in the field, and it required some service and experience before they were displaced, and the right men were found in the right place. The popularity and amiability that could induce the men to Volunteer, could exist without the necessary qualifications for an officer.
541. The appointment and promotion of the Regimental Officers rested with the Governors, and much delay, and often confusion, resulted in the filling of vacancies, until the system of Mustering Officers was in complete working order, and even then the regulations required such conditions that officers were often performing the duty of an increased grade, long before they had an opportunity to muster-in, and receive the pay of the new grade.
542. The Governors of the different States each adopted their own method for raising troops, and organizing Regiments, and it would be difficult to ascertain which should be regarded as the best, as the course pursued in one section would not do in another, and the plan adopted at the beginning of the war, when patriotism was not checked by sad experience, would not work towards the close, when townships taxed themselves voluntarily beyond all precedent to buy substitutes, to avoid a draft.
543. As all great wars in this country must depend upon the will of the people, none can take place that the people will not be willing to enlist in, and therefore the plan of raising troops by voluntary enlistment will be the basis upon which our future armies will be organized; it proved eminently successful in the past, and will therefore be resorted to until it fails in the future.
544. The Colonel of the Regiment is appointed by the Governor, and the other officers should, at least, believe that their appointments have originated with the Colonel, and that their future success and promotion depend upon his good-will; this is absolutely necessary in volunteer organizations for temporary service, as in the late Rebellion, to secure their hearty cooperation. The Colonel then, as the Superintendent of the Recruiting Service for his Regiment, gives his orders as to the stations to be taken, respectively, by the officers for recruiting purposes.
545. A circular should be carefully prepared, containing complete instructions for the guidance of the officers, giving sufficient details to enable the officers fully to comprehend their duties, for it is in the first formation that the greatest care is necessary in order to get started right. (Par. 479.) Much depends upon the completeness of the instructions, for little progress can be made where the first steps taken are not correct.
546. The officers are distributed about in localities where recruits may be expected, and are directed in their duties from the Headquarters of the Regiment, by the Colonel, through the Adjutant of the Regiment. The Headquarters should be favorably located for supplying the troops, and for transportation and communication.
547. Those companies where the men and officers came from the same district, were found to be much less efficient than where the officers were strangers to the men. The men are apt to presume on officers who were friends and neighbors in civil life, and this evil existed in the most aggravated form where the men elected their own officers.
548. As soon as a company had recruited the number of men contemplated by law, it was ordered to the rendezvous, and the course of instruction began in daily routine and Tactics. It added much more to the efficiency of a Regiment, where recruits were sent in detachments, and organized into companies, without reference to locality, or who recruited them; as soon as a sufficient number of men were assembled at the Rendezvous to form a company, the senior Captain, and senior First and Second Lieutenants, were assigned to it, and the nucleus was formed for the Regiment. The next company was formed in the same way, and this was found to be the best way to build up the Regiment.
549. Full details should be contained in the circular of instructions to the Recruiting Officers, as to the subsistence and quartering of the men, and the time and means of transportation of the recruits to the depot. Clothing should be supplied to the recruits as soon as possible, as the uniform assists greatly in controlling and disciplining the men. The mode of procuring the clothing, and from what source, and in what quantity it should be drawn and issued, should be fully explained, and the more inexperienced the officers are in military matters, the more detailed should be the instructions.
550. ROUTINE.—Having taken all necessary measures to procure the men, and to provide for them, until they reach the depot or rendezvous where the Regiment is to be organized, the next thing is to establish the routine or order in which the camp duties are to be performed. No camp can be well governed without system, and no Regiment can be properly instructed without established hours for the different exercises.
551. A Regimental Order should be published, setting forth the hours for the various Roll-Calls, and when the Drills are to take place, and in an entirely new Regiment it will be necessary to explain the mode of doing, and the object of the various duties required. An explanation under this head of the various duties is given, in Par. 423.
552. The enforcement of these duties is the task of the Commander. He must see that his orders are rigidly obeyed and executed. He uses his Field Officers as his inspecting officers, and requires them to attend at the various hours of duty to see that his orders are obeyed. It may not be necessary to require all his Field Officers at the same time, but he should assure himself that everything is properly done, and to this end he should use them all, if necessary.
553. The Officer of the Day, and the Officer of the Guard, are two of the most important aids in enforcing the routine of Camp duties. He should hold them rigidly to the performance of their respective duties. It is through them mainly that order is preserved, and punctuality observed in the hours of duty.
554. Modifications are necessary in the routine of duties depending upon the location of the Regiment, the season of the year, and the condition of the same, whether it has been long in service, whether it requires improvement, whether it is in Camp or Garrison, or on Campaign. System must be preserved at all these times. The rule is, to adhere to the condition and routine of a Camp of Instruction, as near as possible, and according to the necessities of the Regiment.
555. INSTRUCTION.—The manner in which instruction in Tactics is imparted to the troops, is through the theoretical instruction of the officers, and practical exercises by the enlisted men. Schools are established, thus: the Non-Commissioned Officers of each Company form a School, and recite to the Officers of the Company under the direction of the Captain of the Company; their instructions should extend through the “School of the Soldier,” and “School of the Company.” The Commissioned Officers of the Companies are united into one or more Schools, under the Field Officers, and their recitations should cover the entire range of Tactics.
556. The practical exercises are carried out, thus; the men of each company are divided into squads of three or more men each, and exercised in the “School of the Soldier,” under a Non-Commissioned Officer, and these exercises are superintended by the Commissioned Officers of each Company, respectively. These exercises are continued daily, until the men are sufficiently instructed to be united into platoons, when they are drilled by the Commissioned Officers, until the men and officers are perfect in the School of the Company. The Companies are then united and exercised in the “School of the Battalion,” by the Colonel and Field Officers of the Regiment.
557. The schools should progress with the exercises, and keep about one lesson in advance, in order that the lesson as soon as understood in theory, may be impressed on the mind by practice. Weekly reports should be made of all the recitations in the various schools, in the form given for record of examinations, page 69. These reports will serve to show that the schools are in operation, and what progress they are making, and also the relative merits in the same school of the members composing it.
558. In nearly all climates there is a season when the exercises are, for a portion of the year, suspended. When the season returns for the resumption of the exercises, they should begin with the fundamental exercises, viz., the “School of the Soldier,” and proceed progressively through the whole subject, according to the character and composition of the command.
559. When recruits are received, they are drilled more frequently than the old soldiers in the “School of the Soldier,” until they are sufficiently proficient to be admitted to the exercises of the company, after which no distinction is made between them and old soldiers, so far as relates to exercises.
560. Target practice is an exercise that has never been properly enforced in our service, and yet if men do not know how to fire accurately, and have no confidence in their weapons, all other qualifications of the soldier are virtually of no avail in the hour of battle. This exercise, like the other, should combine theory with practice, the men should be taught the principles involved in firing, and required to apply them in practice.
561. Other schools and gymnasium exercises are found of service to the soldier, in European armies, particularly during such seasons of the year when out-door exercises are, for the time, necessarily suspended. Soldiers are necessarily precluded from promotion, unless they can read and write, and every man is valuable to the service in proportion to his intelligence.
562. DISCIPLINE.—The preservation of order, the prevention of all kinds of offenses, and the faithful performance of every kind of duty, without delay or interruption, is what is meant by discipline. It is maintained more by attention to all the duties of the Regimental Commander, than by attention to any one particular duty, and consists not alone in requiring every one to do his particular part, but also in doing his own towards his command.
563. There are certain general principles that should be observed in the requirements of duty that tend greatly to the preservation of discipline. The commanders of companies, guards, and detachments, should be held responsible for the proper deportment and attention to duty of their respective commands, and the Commander of the Regiment should never attempt to make corrections or changes, except through the proper subordinate. Each subordinate should have complete and exclusive control of his own command, and any orders or instructions to it should be issued to the commander, and none other.
564. When an officer is relieved from the responsibility of any duty by the interference of any one in authority, all interest is lost in the matter, he becomes indifferent, and if he does not positively neglect it, he does no more than he is obliged to do. This principle is universal, every one to be efficient in his position must feel a certain amount of self-importance in it.
565. The duty is immensely simplified by requiring the officers to do their duty; if successful in that, it follows as a matter of course, that the men do theirs. It is much easier to direct a few officers of the Regiment, than to direct all the officers and men individually; if the Captains can be made to do their duty, their companies will be efficient, and consequently the Regiment.
566. The certainty of reward for meritorious conduct, and the equal certainty of punishment for dereliction of duty, are pre-eminent in the preservation of discipline. There should, therefore, be certain inducements in the way of promotion, furloughs, relief from arduous duties, preference for special or desirable duty, medals, badges, etc., etc., to encourage those who are faithful, and do their duty well.
567. For the insubordinate and vicious there should always be a Court-Martial impending, and a punishment commensurate with the offense. There should be no delay or shrinking, the first and highest offender should be always selected for an example. The discomfiture of a leader in such a case is the intimidation of all his followers.
568. But all rewards and punishments must be administered “without partiality, favor, or affection,” with a just appreciation of the merits of all, and the strictest regard for justice; there must be no “friends to reward, or enemies to punish,” in the government of a Regiment, and above all, there must be no feeling manifested, except such as it may be desirable to excite in the minds and hearts of the officers and men; for the feelings which are exhibited by the Commander excite corresponding feelings in the command.
569. APPOINTMENT AND REDUCTION OF NON-COMMISSIONED OFFICERS.—The Regulations have provided how Non-Commissioned Officers are appointed and reduced. (Par. 410, 411. Reg. 73 and 79.) All Non-Commissioned Officers are appointed by the Colonel or Commanding Officer; but those of the companies are appointed upon the recommendation of the Company Commanders. The Non-Commissioned Staff of the Regiment are entirely selected by the Colonel. Captains have the exclusive right to select their First or Orderly Sergeant, from the Sergeants. (Reg. 80.)
570. There are but two ways of reducing Non-Commissioned Officers: first, by order of the Regimental Commander, on the application of the Company Commander; second, by sentence of a Court-Martial; any other means is irregular and contrary to Regulations. (Reg. 79.) If the Captain and Colonel do not unite on the subject of the reduction of a Non-Commissioned Officer, the only course left is to prefer charges and have him tried by a Court-Martial. An officer of superior grade has no right to order the reduction of a Non-Commissioned Officer, but he may prefer charges, like any other officer, and bring him to trial.
571. The Colonel or Commanding Officer of the Regiment issues a Warrant to each Non-Commissioned Officer, signed by himself and countersigned by the Adjutant of the Regiment, corresponding to a Commission for a Commissioned Officer. The blanks for the Warrants are furnished by the Adjutant-General’s Department. (Reg. 80.) A Regimental order is always made to announce the appointment of a Non-Commissioned Officer, in which the grade and data of its commencement should be distinctly stated, and the Warrant should be made out to correspond to it. The issuing of Warrants should not be neglected, for the Non-Commissioned Officers place great value on them.
572. Much of the discipline of a Regiment depends upon the care in the selection of the Sergeants and Corporals, and the distinction that is made in these appointments. If they are well selected, properly sustained and directed, the Regiment will be well governed, for they will furnish the material aid to govern the men.
573. As a rule, the Company Commanders being most interested, and having greater opportunities to judge of the merits of the candidates, the Colonel will have little else to do than to confirm the recommendations of the Company Commanders, for the appointments. He should not oppose the wishes of the Captain, except for manifest reasons. The appointing power is given to the Colonel as a check, and the fact that he possesses it is sufficient to control the recommendations for the appointments in favor of the best interests of the service.
574. Company and Post Commanders may make temporary appointments, subject to the approval of the Colonel. (Reg. 74.) When a Non-Commissioned Officer is reduced by sentence of a Court-Martial, at a Post not the Regimental Headquarters, the Company Commander will forward a copy of the order to the Commander of the Regiment. (Reg. 79.)
575. If in addition to the care in selecting Non-Commissioned Officers, there is also the hope held out that where a Non-Commissioned Officer is recommended by his Company Commander as a worthy candidate for a Commission, under the provisions of the Act, August 4, 1854, he will certainly receive an examination, and if found competent, be recommended for promotion, the rank and file will feel that the gate of preferment is open to them, and thus the greatest stimulus be given to meritorious conduct and ambition. There can be no progress in human nature, in the ranks or out of it, unless there is a hope that time and successful labor will bring its rewards.
576. PARADES, REVIEWS, INSPECTIONS, AND MUSTERS.—These are ceremonies instituted by Regulations for various purposes so closely related and intermingled, yet all with different objects, that, although under one heading they require to be treated of separately.
577. A Parade is a ceremony that in our service takes place daily when the weather permits, at sundown; it may be required at other hours, but this is not usual. (Reg. 337.) It consists of a display of the command in a manner established by Art. XXXII of the Regulations; it is the occasion on which orders are published, and such other information as may be necessary to communicate to the command collectively.
578. The form given is for the Infantry arm, there is no form given in Regulations for Artillery or Cavalry. A form is generally provided in the Tactics for those arms. In practice throughout the service, these different ceremonies in the Artillery and Cavalry assimilate themselves as near as possible to the forms given for Infantry in the Regulations.
579. The form for Review is also found in Art. XXXII. This is a ceremony of compliment to some superior officer, and usually precedes the prescribed Inspections and Musters as an exercise. The form given is for a single Battalion or Regiment of Infantry; Artillery and Cavalry are required to conduct their reviews on “similar principles, and according to the systems of instruction for those arms of service.” (Reg. 374.) For larger commands the necessary modifications are suggested in the Regulations. (Reg. 371.)
580. An Inspection is a ceremony instituted to show the condition of the command with regard to numbers, equipment, and general fitness for service. Art. XXX of the Regulations relates to inspections. It prescribes the form of the ceremony, and requires that stated Inspections should be made by Captains every Sunday, by the Colonel every month, and at every muster for payment. (Reg. 304.) Inspection is usually preceded by Review. (Reg. 303.) The Commanding Officer is also required to visit the Quarters, Hospitals, Guard House, and other departments of his command. (Reg. 305.)
581. The form prescribed is for Infantry, which is totally inapplicable to Artillery or Cavalry in the details. The form may be adhered to in the main, when mounted; but for a minute inspection of individuals, they must be dismounted, and it is therefore attended with much more inconvenience and difficulty. An established form is greatly needed. It is the custom to make a cursory inspection, as near the form prescribed for Infantry, as the dissimilarity of arms will admit, and then dismount the men to inspect in detail.
582. Muster is a ceremony required to be performed on the last day of February, April, June, August, October, and December, for the purpose of ascertaining the presence of the men and officers borne on the rolls, and to prepare the rolls for the payment of the troops for the two preceding months. (Art. XXXI.) This ceremony cannot be dispensed with; it is usually preceded by a Review and an Inspection. The muster is required to be performed by an Inspector-General, or a Special Inspector, designated by the Corps, Division, or Department Commander, but generally neither are present, in which case it is the duty of the Commanding Officer of the Post. (Reg. 327.)
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Transcribed by Scott Gutzke, 2006.
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