National Military Park
July 30, 1931
Subject: Annual Report; Fiscal Year 1931.
To: Quartermaster, Third Corps Area, Baltimore, Md.
1. FINANCIAL DISBURSEMENTS, F. Y. 1931, APPROPRIATION.
|Salaries and Wages
|Stationery and Office Supplies
|Nonstructural Improvements to Land
|Roads, Walks and Drainage, Repair of
|Water Rent & Farm Pump Repairs
|Bridges, repair of
|Fences, trellises and walls, repair of
|Flagstaffs, monuments, etc., repair of
|Equipment, repair of
|Hire of teams
2. "NO-YEAR APPROPRIATION.
|Balance July 1, 1930
|Remitted July 19, 1930
|Remitted October 20,1930
|Remitted November 22, 1930
|Remitted April 8, 1931
|Remitted April 16, 1931
|Remitted April 27, 1931
|Remitted May 4, 1931
Repairs to Wheatfield and Mummasburg Roads
Repairs to Park Farm Buildings
3. EMPLOYEES: Three employees retired during the year, Wm. C. Storrick, Forester, Harry Clay, Messenger, and Wm. M. Tawney, Guard. Mr. Tawney was retired because of a reduction in forces necessitated by reduced allotment for civilian personnel.
The designation of Ellis G. Starner was changed from Guard to Laborer because of the readjustment necessary in personnel.
4. MONUMENTS, MARKERS AND TABLETS: Of the 845 monuments on this Park there were 134 cleaned during May and June 1931 and paid for from the item of $2,000 in the 1931-32 Appropriation made available in March 1931. Contract with Charles Kappes was executed on June 27, 1931 for cleaning the Pennsylvania Monument, the Stannard Vermont Monument and the United States Regulars Monument in the amount of $600 and payable from the 1931 f. y. appropriation.
The usual amount of painting of cannons, caissons and iron tablets and polishing of bronze tablets was accomplished.
5. PROPERTY ACCOUNT: In compliance with letter of your office (688 (Gettysburg) 40), Subject: Procurement and Accountability for Supplies, dated December 4, 1930, there was forwarded shipping ticket covering supplies on hand at this Park on January 8, 1931.
6. NEW EQUIPMENT: One new 30 in. cut gasoline driven mower and 2 hand mowers, 16 in. cut, were purchased by H. Q. 3rd C. A. and a 3 1\2 ft. side cut horse drawn mower was purchased for use on the Park.
One hundred Fence Post Molds for making of Concrete Fence Posts were received. These were furnished the M. J. Grove Lime Co., Lime Kiln, Md. with whom contract was let for manufacture of 1660 posts.
The 600 gallon water tank on hand was equipped with a pump and engine for filling the tank and spraying the water from the tank onto the monuments which are being cleaned as outlined in paragraph 4, thereby accelerating the cleaning and accomplishing a much greater amount of work with the funds available. This apparatus will also save considerable labor in cement construction and repair on the Park.
The gasoline engine from one of the worn out power lawn mowers was rigged to a grind stone for grinding tools, especially scythes, saving considerable labor. Scythes are now kept in shape for use without interrupting the work of the mowing gangs.
7. MOWING: The usual amount of mowing was done during July, August and September of the calendar year 1930 and during April, May and June of 1931, along the 22 miles of avenues and on the many large memorial plots.
All mowing was done with horse drawn and power mowers. Mounds surrounding monuments and markers were kept trimmed with hand lawn mowers.
8. FENCING: Repairs to post and rail fences were made during the year, 500 new posts being purchased under contract at 35 cents each, total $175.00.
9. PAINTING: The gun carriages, caissons, pyramids of shells, iron tablets and stands, bridges, guard railing and chains, and posts in part of the pipe fences were painted. This work was accomplished by the Painters who are employed on the Park. Their work is practically continuous during the season when painting can be done, and even at that they cannot do all that should be done.
10. GUTTERS & DRAINS: During the fiscal year 11,244 feet of old stone gutter along the avenues were removed and replaced with concrete. This gives much more substantial support to the sides of the avenues and eliminates the need for applying weed killer in the gutters.
11. LAND UNDER LEASE: There are now 16 Government owned farms under lease with an aggregate acreage of 1297.54. Of these, two tracts are without buildings.
The McMillan Land, which is without buildings, and consisting of 55 acres, has been leased for one year.
The McPherson lands, which could be among the best of the farms on the Park, have been difficult to rent because all the buildings except a barn were burned some years ago. They have, therefore been a source of expense through the necessity for mowing to keep down grass, underbrush and noxious weeds. Finally a tenant was found who for an almost nominal rental agreed to try farming them for not to exceed three years. If he finds it profitable he may be expected to renew the lease. If not, these lands may be expected to revert to an item of expense. Were the farm buildings restored, this would become one of the most easily and profitably rented tracts on the Park. Recommendations for this restoration have been submitted.
Construction of silos on three or four of the largest and best farms would also be a profitable investment. Increased rental to cover the cost of construction within a reasonable period could be secured and after the structure was paid for would become revenue. A concrete silo would cost from about $600.00 to $800.00 and could be so located as not to noticeably change the natural appearance of the Park.
Of the farm rentals placed in the No-Year appropriation $730.89 was used for repair and general maintenance of farm buildings.
The tenants on farms under lease have followed the prevailing rotation of crops of this section and have shown proper care of the buildings.
12. BUILDINGS: The building on the Park in which General Meade had his headquarters has been reconditioned inside and a balustrade built in the doorway so that visitors may see the interior without entering or touching the relics which are on exhibit there. The Meade's Headquarters barn has been roofed with galvanized roofing. This was necessary as the old shingle roof had so deteriorated as to become useless.
The Headquarters building itself is gradually deteriorating from dry rot and may be expected to become ruinous in the not very distant future.
13. CAMPING ON PARK: During the year a number of U. S. Army units camped on the Wheatfield and on Pardee Field on the Park.
A number of Boy Scout troops, in charge of Scout Masters, were given permission to camp on the park.
A custom is developing among visiting military units of placing wreaths and holding services at some selected monument. Quite often these are at a monument to an organization of which the one conducting the ceremonies is a descendent. On July 1, 2 and 3 several local patriotic organizations held services on the battlefield in honor of organizations, individuals or events connected with the battle. On July 4th, Independence Day, exercises were held at the Pennsylvania State Monument. These are believed to be worthy of commendation and encouragement, especially as teaching patriotism to the rising generations and refuting the pacifist propaganda now so insistently and insidiously preached.
14. GUIDE SERVICE: At the beginning of the calendar year 96 guide licenses were issued. On account of increased traffic on the Park 20 guides, selected from the eligible list established, were licensed on August 25, 1930, to solicit and act as guides after 1 p. m. each day for three weeks. These were not licensed during the calendar year 1931 because of the greatly decreased amount of tourist traffic.
Quarterly reports were rendered by the guides to the Superintendent of the number of tourists conducted by each over the battlefield and show that 113,594 visitors were conducted over the Park by guides and the total number of visitors is estimated to be 567,970 for the fiscal year. This is a decrease of 146,970 under the preceding fiscal year.
On Dec. 17, 1930, the guide license of J. Warren Gilbert was revoked because of insubordination and failure to show visitors the whole field. This man disregarded the revocation and continued guiding without a license thereby requiring court action to restrain him from guiding. Temporary restraining injunction was served on him on Feb. 9, 1931, and a hearing of the case held in the Federal Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania at Scranton, Pa. on March 13, 1931, when the Government witnesses were heard but at request of defendant's attorney the case was continued to permit him to file a motion to dismiss for want of legal cause of action. This motion was heard at Harrisburg on April 13, 1931, and overruled. Defendant then prayed permission to file his answer, which was granted. Briefly his allegations are want of jurisdiction to enjoin commission of a criminal act, in the court, want of property interest sufficient to support proceedings in equity, and that there is adequate legal remedy. If decision should finally be in favor of the defendant, the case should be carried to the U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals, and if the decision there should be in defendant's favor, no legal means will remain of enforcing departmental regulations.
E. E. Davis,
688 Gettysburg, (7-30-31) 1st Ind.
HQ THIRD CORPS AREA, OQM, Baltimore, Md., August 6, 1931. To: The Quartermaster General, Washington, D.C.
A. K. B.