OCR Interpretation

The Rio Grande rattler. ([McAllen], Hidalgo County, Tex.) 1916-1917, December 15, 1917, Image 10

Image and text provided by New York State Military History Museum

Persistent link: http://www.nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/sn87030234/1917-12-15/ed-1/seq-10/

Thumbnail for 10
8 TH E WADSWORTH GAS ATTACK a n d RIO GRANDE RATTLER HOW TO WIN COMMISSION IN ENGI­ NEERS. Examinations for Lieutenancies to Be Held Here January 21. Announcem ent is made at Division H e a d ­ quarters that, owing to the shortage of offi­ cers in the engineer corps of the army, it is proposed to hold a com p etitive exam ­ ination in Camp W a d sw o rth, beginning J a n ­ uary 21, to fill some of those vacancies, and enlisted men and civilians who may aspire to appointm e n t as provisional second lieu­ tenants in the engineers are asked to com­ pete. According to law, vacancies in the corps of engineers may he filled, first, by cadets as they graduate from the m ilitary acad­ emy, and, second, through the com p etitive exam ination of other candidates. In order to be eligible to take this exam ination, a candidate m u s t be an unm a rried citizen of the U n ited States betw e en the ages of 21 and 29 years and m u st hold a diploma show­ ing graduation in an engineering course from an approved technical school. Command­ ing officers are required to subm it, not later th a t D ecem b er 15, a list of approved can­ didates in their organizations. Concerning the chances of the enlisted men to pass the exam ination, the bulletin states: “It is expected th a t by relieving them as much as, p o ssible from their regular duties, such of these candidates as may be ap­ proved will be given special opportunities to prepare them selves to some extent for a w ritten exam ination w hich will be held be­ ginning January 21, and presum ably at the station of this organization. This com p eti­ tive exam ination is required by law, but will be considerably sim p ler in character than the one which persons outside of the service are required to take. It will, however, be sufficient to show to w h at extent the candi­ dates have assim ilated the principles which they learned in their course at the technical schools. “A rrangem e n ts have been made for the exam ination of candidates who may be at officers’ training camps at the time, and further arrangem e n ts have been made in order th a t the opportunities may be given those in France, or may be en route there­ to, to be examined likew ise.” WHY SUPPLY SERGEANTS ARE UN­ POPULAR. Whatever Else They Lack, They Always Have Plenty of Red-Tape on Hand. I dislike Supply Sergeants. They irritate me. They are alw ays asking personal ques­ tions. They w a n t to know the “Hows” and the “W h e res.” They question your motives. They go on the supposition th a t all people —excepting them selves, of course—are de­ ceitful or ignorant or both. They are sus­ picious. S er ge ant-Mis ers. They look upon all G o v ernm ent property as a m iser looks upon gold. They are for­ ever inspecting and taking inventories. They are selfish. They think a man can dress well and be presentable in “one (1) hat, service; one (1) undershirt, canton flannel, w inter; one (1) breeches, cotton, O. D., p r .; one (1) stockings, It. wt., woolen, pr.; one (1) shoes, russet, m arching, pr.; and two (2) ornam e n ts, collar, bronze.” W h e n e v er I lose anything I invariably find out th a t it has found its way into the Sup­ ply T e n t and—in such event—the Supply Sergeant refuses to retu rn it until I have presented him w ith two “bits” cash for the Mess Fund. Judging from my contributions to this fund, our mess should begin to pick up considerably w ithout further delay. Supply Sergeants are unfriendly. They speak of and to you by num b e r only. W hen they are not asking you questions they are dem anding th a t num b e r so and so “sign h e r e ! ” ■ Tag, Tag, Who Has the Tag? I was well-known in civil life. I used to get five and ten dollars at fairs and bazaars for my signature. In the Army I m u st at­ tach my signature at least four tim es to va­ rious papers before I can persuade the Sup­ ply Sergeant to give me so much as “one cord, hat, inf.” or “one laces, shoes, russet, pr.” Three or four m o n ths ago the tape from which my identification tag dangles upon my chest broke and I lost my tag. An identification tag is a sm all m e tal disc upon which is stam p ed your name, rank and the company and regim e n t th a t has possession of you. In case you are lost the person who finds you is able to locate your owner by this tag and return you w ithout much in­ convenience. You see, these tags are vitally im p o rtant. I went, therefore, im m ediately to the Supply Sergeant to get a new tag and this is the conversation—as nearly as I can re ­ m em b er—th a t ensued: “Sergeant,” I reported; “I have lost my identification tag.” . “W h e re did you lose it?” snapped the Sergeant. “T h a t seem s to be a secret?” I replied, pleasantly. “Don’t try to be funny,” said the Ser­ geant. Supply Sergeants lack all sense of humor. “Have you reported the loss to your corporal?” “ How dare you laugh at me? ’’ “ I w a sn’t laughing at you, Sergeant P a t- son. ’ ’ “ Well, w h at else was there for yon to laugh a t ? ” “Yes, sir.” “Did he give you perm ission to report to> m e ?” “Yes, sir.” “W hy haven’t you reported sooner?” “I have only ju s t lost the tag, sir.” “Did you ever have a tag ? ” “ Yes, sir.” “W ho are you?” “Private John Blank.” “T h a t m eans nothing to me. W h a t’s your num b e r?”’ “N-83, sir.” A fter a search through a thousand odd property slips and a large ledger, the Sup­ ply Sergeant resum ed the conversation. The Third Degree. “Yes, you had one tag, identification, and one yard of tape for tag issued to you on July 2nd, 1917. How did you lose it?” “I was digging a trench, stripped to the- waist. The tape broke and the tag fell.” “Did you look in your clothing when you returned to cam p ?” “No, sir. I had no shirt on and th<§ tag m u st have fallen to the ground.” “Did you look on the ground for the tag ? ” “Yes, sir.” “Did you find it?” “No, sir.” “C a relessness! ” was the brief summing up. “You can’t have another.” “W h a t shall I do?” I ventured. “Make out a R e p o rt on Survey, Form No. 186 A. G. O.” Now a report on survey is made out in triplicate. Upon it is entered all the facts of the case; the article lost, how it was lost and the date, hour and m inute upon which the loss was discovered. A ttached to this form are affidavits sworn to by all present and the Supply Sergeant stating th a t there existed such an article, th a t it was actually issued to you and th a t you received and signed innum e rable forms for it and giving all particulars over again. Unwinding the Red Tape. This form was filled in with great care and presented by the Supply Sergeant to the company comm ander. The M ajor of the battalion then signed it and passed it on to the Regim e n ta l Supply Sergeant who let the Regim e n ta l Supply Officer give it th e (Continued on page 29)

xml | txt