Harry Lee Bailey Bannock Indian War journal. 1878.

Bailey, Harry Lee, 1854-1934 [Browse]
1 v. 10 x 17 cm (174 pages [7 blank])


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Summary note
  • This journal, which covers the span of the Bannock Indian War from July to September 1878, provides a detailed account by U.S. Army officers of events in the field and at headquarters. Primarily kept by Harry Lee Bailey (1854-1934), 2nd Lieutenant, U.S. Army, it is predominantly comprised of the text of letters and telegrams to and from General Oliver O. Howard, as well as those sent by his chief officers in the field, Colonel Frank Wheaton, Colonel George A. Forsyth, and Captain Evan Miles. The journal's other contributors include Captain Samuel Tobey Cushing and 2nd Lieutenant Charles Walter Rowell. Both Bailey and Rowell served as Acting Assistant Adjutant General during the campaign.
  • The journal contains records of individual activities, copies of orders sent from the Columbia, Fort Vancouver, Washington Territory, and the text of telegrams sent to and from headquarters consisting of full accounts of troop movements in the field, intelligence reports, plans of action, and after action reports, some several pages long. Also noted are such things as the need for money to pay Indian scouts; the distribution of funds, guns, and horses; and reports of skirmishes and casualities. For example, a telegram entry dated July 18 notes the following: "Honor to report the situation...Forsyth's cav. column reached Starkey's ranch on Daily's road following 93 Umatillas who are in charge of three white scouts...the Umatilla struck the main trail of the hostiles...They had overtaken them at that point & charged them. Killed 17 bucks capt'd 25 women & children & 60 or 70 head of stock, Umatillas only losing two horses. They report the hostiles breaking up into small parties...Captured Paiute squaw say the hostiles intended to try & make their way over into Weiser Country & thence to Bannock or Buffalo country. The death of [Snake chief] Eagan [sic] evidently demoralized them...Wheaton. (page 19)"
  • Included with the volume is a loose printed field order dated July 22, 1878, from temporary headquarters at Baker City, Oregon from Lieut. Harry Lee Bailey, Acting Assistant Adjutant General, to Capt. Samuel Tobey Cushing. Cushing's subsistence endeavors are recorded in various places as he was at the time serving as Purchasing and Depot Commissary at San Francisco, California.
According to the dealer description, a telegram dated July 18, 1878 is the only correspondence known to be quoted anywhere. The description explains that it is possible that some of the telegrams were copied by E. H. Holland, who is listed as telegraph operator.
Source acquisition
Purchase, 2015. AM 2016-52.
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