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3rd Battery 3rd Regiment B Cavalry



From Michigan, Illinois and Wisconsin, the states that compose the Sixth Corps Area, there came men from every walk of life, the student, the laborer, the clerk, the banker, the musician and the luxurious plutocrat. They gathered together as in a melting pot. The reason? To become Men. And Camp Custer received them, ready to mold this great assemblage into men.

And from this motley crowd Troop “B” received its quota, consisting of nine Blue men, thirteen White men and forty-three Reds. Before we tell of our accomplishments, we must first speak of the manner in which they were achieved.

Our greatest assistance was our officers, four of them and each well fitted for his duty. Our troop commander, Captain R. N. Atwell has had years of military experience, three years of which has been gained at the University of Illinois, in the capacity of assistant professor of military science and tactics. Our other officers, Lieut. P. B. Sancomb of the 14th Cavalry and Lieut. E. F. Fuller, a graduate of the Cavalry, and Lieut. W. H. Geb­hardt, 86th Cav. Div., ORC., are all thoroughly experienced in military matters, and were of unestimable aid to us cavalrymen—to be.

Upon our arrival in our troop street on that memorable Friday, August 1st, we were assigned to the tents which were to be our homes for the thirty days to follow. At this time we received our medical examination and part of our equipment. The next day we received our rifles, or to be more exact, a mass of cosmoline with a rifle in the center. They were cleaned with the words “Cosmoline to the right of us, and cosmoline to the left of us” ringing in our ears.

On the following Monday our regular schedule began. And it was some schedule. What didn’t it include? The Red’s first instruction was in pistol firing in which twenty-two per cent of them qualified for marksmen or better. Aside from pistol firing we were also instructed in cavalry drill, musketry and equitation. The last named was the greatest attraction of all subjects because of its novelty, but after the first ride some of the novelty wore off.

In all this work it was a sincere ambition of Troop “B” to maintain the "Esprit de Corps" of the cavalry, and we are proud to say that we continually did. But regardless of that, it was also the ambition of the troop to lead all other troops in anything it under­took, and in most cases it did. One of the great factors in the fulfilling of this ambition, was the work of the Blue men, since they had nothing but the interest of the troop at heart, especially Higley with his one-lunged whistle and extraordinary command, ‘dis­misss-ss-st!” And then the Whites trying hard to follow in the footsteps of those exception­ally dignified Blues, and succeeding about as well as a ten year old boy trying to imitate his father smoking! And last, but not least, are the Reds who form the backbone of the troop, this backbone being slightly bruised after the first day’s riding.

In athletics we were more or less consistent, although we did not star in any particular branch except volleyball in which we took the squadron championship. Place and Couch were our star athletes, Place playing on the Michigan state football team and Couch on the Illinois team.

The most remarkable of our horsemen was Davidson who hit the line—that is, the picket line—and was most ungently and ungracefully swept of his horse, much to the horse’s regret.

In concluding, Troop “B” wishes to extend its heartiest appreciation to all concerned in making this so pleasant and beneficial a month, and also wishes to the Troop “B” of next year as much if not more success than was ours.

Third Battalion 3rd Regiment Company B Cavalry

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