NEGenWeb Project
Spanish American War

Compiled by Fred Greguras


Camp John W. Thomas, Nashville, TN (See Camp Bob Taylor, Nashville, TN)

Camp Townsend, Peekskill, NY (See Camp Black)

Named for Major General Frederick Townsend, Adjutant General, who established the state camp in 1882 for training New York National Guard units. This was not a new name in 1898 but was the existing name of the camp.
The current Camp Smith, northwest of Peekskill, has been the site of New York national guard military encampments since 1882 according to the web site for the camp. Camp Townsend was at this site in 1898. A souvenir booklet was published on the 1897 encampment.
The 8th, 9th and 12th N.Y. Vol. Inf. regiments mustered in here.
There is a two-page photo spread of Camp Townsend in the Photographic History of the Spanish American War, Pearson Publishing Company, 1898, pages 208-209 (CD version).

Camp Tunnell, Middletown, DE

Ebe Walter Tunnell was governor of Delaware during the Spanish American War.
This was the muster in camp of the 1st Del. Vol. Inf. from about April 26 until August 20, 1898.
The camp was at east end of Middletown south of “Ingleside,” the home of William Green, according to the 1961 Middletown Centennial Celebration Program. Ingleside was north of Main Street and the camp was southeast of the intersection of Main and Catherine Streets. According to the Middleton April 25 and 28, 1898 Every Evening newspapers, the camp was about a quarter mile south of Main Street on a “distinct elevation” and north of Silver Lake. The campsite is presently occupied by houses and a school.

Camp Van Duzee, St. Paul, MN (See Camps Bacon and Ramsey)

Named for Col. Charles Van Duzee of the 14th Minn. Vol. Inf.
 According to Holbrook, the camp was established September 23, 1898 at the present intersection of University and Hamline Avenues. The camp was located across the rail yards from Camp Ramsey. Camp Van Duzee was the final encampment in St. Paul of the 14th Minn. Vol. Inf. before its muster out on November 18, 1898.

Camp Voorhees, Sea Girt, NJ

Foster McGowan Voorhees was elected governor of New Jersey in 1898.
Sea Girt was and continues to be a New Jersey National Guard camp.
All four regiments of New Jersey volunteers were mustered in at Camp Voorhees.

Camp Walthall, Columbus, MS

Named for Confederate General and U.S. Senator Edward C. Walthall of Mississippi who died April 21, 1898.
The 5th U.S. Vol. Inf. was organized and mustered in this camp beginning about June 7, 1898. The regiment departed for Savannah, GA on August 6, 1898 and went on to Cuba from there.
According to the July 1, 1898 New Orleans Daily Picayune, the camp was on the banks of the Tombigbee River about a quarter mile from Columbus. It was “within easy walking distance of the central portion of Columbus.” The camp was located just west of where Moores Creek presently flows into the Tombigbee River.

Camp Walworth, New York, NY

This “camp” was a project of the Women’s National War Relief Association. The Director–General was Ellen Hardin Walworth. Camp Walworth was located in the Salvation Army School for Cadets at 316 East 15th Street in New York City. It operated from September 8 to November 20, 1898 to provide soldiers with a good meal, lodging, clothing, money, or a train ticket home.
Members of the Association also went to the field to serve, for example, as nurses in state side hospitals for convalescing soldiers. Mrs. Walworth’s daughter bravely served as a volunteer nurse at Camp Wikoff and died of disease from her service as did so many soldiers.
Camp Jewett, at Nyack-on-Hudson, New York, just north of the city, was a convalescent home for soldiers established by the Association. The buildings used were the Christian Herald Children’s Home. It was named after Major R. Dickson Jewett whose family in 1894 had first made the Mont Lawn estate available for use as a summer camp for children from New York City. The site is currently the Ramah Day Camp along Christian Herald Road in West Nyack.

Camp Warburton, Newport News, VA (See Camps Brooke and Grant)

From the May 12, 1898 Newport News Daily Press: “Battery A, Captain B. H. Warburton and Battery C, Captain George Waters, arrived in the city yesterday morning from Camp Hastings, Pa., having been ordered here by the War Department.

Brigadier General Royal L. Frank commandant of Fortress Monroe, under whose command the batteries are detailed a lieutenant to receive the artillerymen from Pennsylvania and escort them to their camp near the works of the Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company, which will be known as ‘Camp Warburton.’ . . . As was exclusively stated in the Daily Press today one week ago, these batteries were ordered here to protect the works of the Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Companies where the battleships Kearsarge, Kentucky and Illinois are in course of construction, and the arrival of the artillerymen from Pennsylvania yesterday morning was the result of a request made by President C. B. Orcutt several weeks ago. Today the officers of the batteries will place their guns and locate guards in the shipyard.
On arriving at the large tract of water-front property recently purchased by the multi-millionaire, Mr. Collis P. Huntington, directly adjoining the shipyard on the north, the artillerymen found their guns, battery accouterments and camp equipage in waiting for them and they lost no time in marking out their camp and preparing for an indefinite stay on the bluff over looking the James. Several names were mentioned for the camp, but it was unanimously agreed to name it for the senior commander, and so it is ‘Camp Warburton.’”

These artillery units were Pennsylvania Light Artillery Batteries A and C. They were in Newport News from May 11 to August 5, 1898 when they departed for Puerto Rico. 
The site of Camp Warburton was the same general site where Camps Brooke and Grant were later located.
From a photograph caption in a 1995 Newport News Daily Press newspaper: “In 1898, when war with Spain broke out, National Guard regiments were billeted in Newport News and the Huntington Rifles were called to active duty. Tent encampments were erected along 23rd Street, a block away from the Hotel Warwick, and on the Casino Grounds and along the James River between 45th Street and 50th Street. The city was one of the chief ports of embarkation for American troops going to Cuba. The battleships Kearsarge and Kentucky and three Navy gunboats were launched that year at the shipyard.”

Camp Wells, Jacksonville, FL (See Camp Cuba Libre)

Named after Captain George Wells, commanding Company G of the 2nd N.J. Vol. Inf.
This was the camp of Company G which operated the division rifle range for Camp Cuba Libre. Camp Wells was near Panama Park which at that time, was about three miles north of Jacksonville. The division was the second division of the Seventh Corps. The camp was occupied from mid-July, 1898 until about September 20, 1898
The August 6, 1898 Centralia (WI) Enterprise and Tribune reported that the rifle range was at Panama Park.

Camp Wetherill, Fort Thomas, KY (See Camp Allyn Capron at Fort Thomas)

Named after Captain Alexander M. Wetherill of the 6th U.S. Inf., killed July 1, 1898 at San Juan Hill. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
From Charles H. Bogart, The Military Post at Ft. Thomas, pages 7-9, unpublished manuscript: “While Ft. Thomas was without a regular garrison during the Spanish American War its military activity did not cease. First it was used as a rendezvous for volunteer army regiments. Among the troops stationed at the fort during this period were Company A and B (immunes) (Colored) Indiana Volunteers. These troops were followed on 9 July 1898 by the 8th U.S. Volunteer Infantry (immunes) (Colored) under Colonel Haggins. The 8th Volunteer Infantry were not stationed on the post but were “camp(ed) just outside the reservation at Ft. Thomas.” In all probability this camp was located just to the north of the fort. The troops were housed in tents. These troops shipped out from Ft. Thomas in September for Chickamauga, Tennessee where they went into camp until January, 1899 when they were mustered out of service. The 8th was not housed in the barracks at Ft. Thomas as they had been converted to hospital wards to treat the sick pouring in from the volunteer regiments. “. . . Political pressure also resulted in the ordering of the 6th Infantry back to Ft. Thomas even though no barrack space was available as all the barracks were being used as hospitals. The 6th Infantry upon arrival at Cincinnati by train on 20 September 1898 paraded through the city crossed over to Newport and marched out to the end of the streetcar line serving Southgate, Kentucky. Here was established Camp Wetherill, named in honor of Captain Alex M. Wetherill killed at San Juan Hill. The 6th remained here until 28 September when it moved to Ft. Thomas but remained housed in tents. On 26 October the 6th Infantry departed for San Antonio, Texas.” See also Bogart, The Military Post at Fort Thomas, Kentucky, Journal of America’s Military Past, Winter, 1999, page 60.
According to Charles H. Bogart, the camp was located on the Congressman Berry farm in Southgate, Kentucky, about one mile from Ft. Thomas, near Evergreen Cemetery.
An article in the Cincinnati Post, August 11, 1997, by Jim Reis, provided the following information about Camp Wetherill: “When the U.S. Army’s Sixth Regiment came marching home in September, 1898 from combat duty in Cuba, the troops returned to a hero’s welcome but no permanent place to call home. The military post at Ft. Thomas had been turned into a hospital. So the men of the Sixth Regiment had to set up a temporary tent camp in what is today Southgate. Accounts list the camp as off Alexandria Pike about three-quarters of a mile from the railroad station at the head of Monmouth Street. A map in The Kentucky Post on Sept. 20, 1898, showed it in the Southgate woods just north of Evergreen Cemetery and west of the Highland House. A writer said the temporary camp, called Camp Wetherill, was visible from Alexandria Pike. . . .”
The 8th U.S. Vol. Inf. was camped at Fort Thomas until October 7, 1898 when it left for Camp Thomas, Georgia.

Camp Wetherill, Greenville, SC

Beginning in early November, 1898, the headquarters of the second division of the Second Corps and two of its brigades were at Camp Wetherill. The first brigade was camped on the north side of town near the intersection of Main Street and Stone Avenue. The second brigade was camped on the southwest side of the city, just north of the present day Dunean area, south and east of the Norfolk Southern Railroad tracks. These site locations are based on 1899 maps of the camp.
According to Huff, Greenville: The History of the City and County in the South Carolina Piedmont, University of South Carolina Press, 1995, pages 256-257, the first brigade camp was north of Earle Street between Buncombe Street and Wade Hampton Boulevard. This is the same general site identified above. The second brigade camp was located south and east of Anderson Street stretching beyond Mills Mill. This is also the same general site identified above. The division headquarters was located on the site of Greenville General Hospital at 101 Malland Street.
The 5th Mass Vol. Inf. was camped here from November 18, 1898 until muster out on March 31, 1899. The official roster of this unit was published at Camp Wetherill in March, 1899.

Camp Wheeler, Huntsville, AL (See Camp Albert G. Forse)

 The camp was established in August 1898 and named after Major General Joseph Wheeler by Major General J.J. Coppinger on August 15, 1898. Wheeler was the second commanding general of the Fourth Corps.
It was renamed Camp Albert G. Forse when General Wheeler assumed command of the camp.

Whipple Barracks, Prescott, AZ

The 1st Territorial Vol. Inf. mustered here in July, 1898. It was comprised of men from Arizona, Indian Territory, New Mexico and Oklahoma.
The regiment also concentrated at Fort Reno, Oklahoma.

Camp Wikoff, Montauk Point, Long Island, NY

Named after Colonel Charles A. Wikoff, commanding officer of the 22nd Infantry from Fort Crook, NE who was KIA near Santiago, Cuba, July 1, 1898. See his photo at page 233 of source (7) and a brief biography at page 297. Col. Wikoff was then commanding the 3rd Brigade of the First Division comprised of the 9th, 13th and 24th U.S. Infantry regiments. He was killed at the ford across the San Juan River which became known as “Bloody Ford” because of the large number of men killed and wounded there. Wikoff is buried in Easton, Pennsylvania.
In existence from approximately August 7, 1898 through October, 1898. “Decontamination” area for troops returning from Cuba, quarantining them for possible tropical diseases.
Montauk Historical Society has published a map showing the Rough Riders’ campsite from August 15 - September 15, 1898.
The Munsey Magazine, November, 1898, at page 256, contains the article, “Life at Camp Wikoff,” with many photos.
See page 297 of source (7).
Book on this camp: Heatley (ed.), Bully! Colonel Theodore Roosevelt, The Rough Riders & Camp Wikoff, Montauk, New York 1898, published by the Montauk Historical Society in cooperation with Pushcart Press, 1998.

Camp Wilder, Knoxville, TN (See Camps Poland and Bob Taylor)

Named after Brevet Brigadier General John T. Wilder, who along with his “Lightning Brigade” was a hero of the battle of Chickamauga in the Civil War. He was a businessman in Chattanooga at the time of the Spanish American War. According to the Knoxville Sentinel of June 15, 1898, the Tennessee governor sought a major generalship of volunteers for Wilder but no appointment was ever made.
Both Camps Bob Taylor and Wilder were established in late June, 1898 near Lake Chilhowie in Chilhowie Park. This park was the site of the 1910 Appalachian Exposition. Camp Bob Taylor was the camp of the 4th Tenn. Camp Wilder was the camp of the 6th U.S. Vol. Inf. Both camps were near Magnolia Avenue. The 6th moved its camp on June 29, 1898 about 6 miles to near Lonsdale. According to the June 29 Knoxville Sentinel, the camp is “about a half mile northeast from the Knoxville College . . . .” This places the camp just north of the Baxter Street exit from I275. The July 4 newspaper gave the following directions “to go to Camp Wilder, take the Middlebrook line, get off at Boyd Street and then go up that street over the line of General Longstreet’s fortifications and then down the hill to the camp.”
From Rule, Standard History of Knoxville, Tennessee, Lewis Publishing Company, 1900, page 189: “General John T. Wilder, on a visit to Secretary of War Alger, June 20, 1898, secured assurances that Knoxville would be made a campsite in the location of the camps for soldiers that were not sent forward to Cuba, or while they might be in waiting. Sites for the Fourth and Sixth regiments were selected June 22, that for the Sixth being on what was formerly Elmwood Park, two miles east of the city on the Park street short line, and consisting of seventy acres of land surrounded on three sides by woodland, and about fifty yards to the eastward was the site of the camp of the Fourth regiment, nearly south of the residence of N.S. Woodward, seventy acres of grass land and well drained. About 5,000 acres of land, partly covered with timber, was there available for a drill and parade ground. A pipe line was laid to the Knoxville water works though the camp, and there were pipes, four inches in diameter, from this main pipe through the center of the camp with hydrants where needed.”
The 6th abandoned Camp Wilder about July 30, 1898 when it left for Camp Thomas and eventually Puerto Rico. General Wilder presented the regiment with a flag as part of the departure ceremonies.

Camp Wilmer, Pimlico, MD, near Baltimore

Named after the then Maryland Adjutant General L. Allison Wilmer according to Fifth Regiment, Infantry, Md. Nat. Guard U.S. Volunteers, published by Geo. A. Meekins, 1899, page 218.
The camp was located at the Pimlico race track. Part of the 1st and the entire 5th Maryland Vol. Inf. were mustered in here beginning in late April, 1898. Many of the buildings were used by the volunteers, including under the grandstands where the “messrooms” were located.

Camp Wilson, Lexington, KY (See Camp Hamilton, KY)

Camp Wolcott, Gloucester, MA

This camp was named after the wartime governor of Massachusetts.
The camp was located at Eastern Point to guard the entrance to Gloucester and also the eastern part of Massachusetts Bay.
This camp was established about May 9, 1898 by Massachusetts state militia units; a battalion of the 5th infantry regiment and Battery C of the 1st battalion of light artillery. These units were not mustered into U.S. service. The battalions of the 5th regiment rotated in and out as occupants of the camp. Battery C stayed until the camp was abandoned on May 31, 1898. Battery C moved to State Fort Park inside Gloucester Harbor and the infantry went home when the camp was abandoned.

Camp Wood, San Antonio, TX

The camp was named after the Rough Riders first commanding officer, Colonel Leonard Wood.
San Antonio was picked as the assembly area for the 1st U.S. Vol. Cav. in May, 1898. Colonel Wood arrived in San Antonio on May 5, 1898 to select a campsite. Troops started arriving about May 7, 1898. The camp was abandoned when the 1st U.S. Vol. Cav. left for Tampa on May 30, 1898.
Riverside Park was selected for the campsite. The fairgrounds and Riverside Park were across the street from each other. The Exposition Hall and grandstand were initially a barracks for the men while officers occupied tents between the main entrance to the park and the barracks. “Troops sleep on coarse gray blankets beneath the high roof of the old Exposition Hall at the Fair Ground.” Troops later moved into tents as soon as they were available. This site had recently been used for a pre-war encampment for troops from several states, according to a newspaper article.
According to a National Park Service report: “Immediately south of Riverside Park, the San Antonio International Fair and Exposition opened in 1888 and was held through 1904. Though Riverside Park attracted large numbers of visitors to the area, the fair, which included a theater, race track, and transportation, machinery, and agricultural exhibit halls, greatly expanded the “visitor industry” in the vicinity of San Antonio’s missions . . . .”
The park is located at 100 McDonald Street and is partially a golf course. The campsite was apparently in the golf course area of the park.
The parade grounds were near San Jose Mission.
A good source is John Rayburn’s article “The Rough Riders in San Antonio, 1898” in the journal “Arizona and the West,” Vol. 3, No. 2, 1961, pages 113-128.

Camp Wrenn, Tampa, FL

Camp Wrenn is identified as a camp near Port Tampa City, Florida in the history of the 3rd Penn Vol. Inf. on the PA Spanish American War web site. The 3rd Penn was in camp at Port Tampa and was moved about “three-quarters of a mile” to Camp Wrenn on July 8, 1898.
Perhaps named after Robert D. Wrenn of Troop A of the Rough Riders. Robert Wrenn was a tennis champion. He won four U.S. singles championships, the last in 1897, before his service with the Rough Riders. Wrenn contracted yellow fever during his service and never regained his pre-war playing form. He was named to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1953.
See page 297 of source (7) for a camp photograph.

Camp S.B.M. Young, Augusta, GA (See Camp MacKenzie)

This winter camp was initially informally named after Major General Samuel B.M. Young, U.S. Vols, second commanding officer of the Second Corps, who had a leadership role in the operations around Santiago. See page 100 of source (7) for a brief biography. According to the Augusta Chronicle, November 13, 1898, General Young was to be the camp’s commanding officer. Young is buried at Arlington National Cemetery. 
Formally named Camp MacKenzie in late November, 1898.


©2005 Fred Greguras