Hugh L. Scott AP-43 - History

Hugh L. Scott AP-43 - History

Hugh L. Scott AP-43

Hugh L. Scott

(AP-43: dp. 12,579; 1. 532'; b. 72'; dr. 30'6"; s. 16 k.; cpl 119)

Hugh L. Scott (AP-43) was built as Hawkeye State for USSB by Bethlehem Shipbuilding Co., Sparrows Point, Md., in 1921. Renamed President Pierce, she sailed for the Dollar Steamship Co., and later for the American President Lines as a passenger liner. Taken over by the Army 31 July 1941, she was renamed Hugh L. Scott and made four voyages to the Far East before sailing to the East Coast in July 1942. The ship was taken over by the Navy 14 August 1942, and converted to an attack transport at Tietjen and Lang (later Todd Shipbuilding & Drydock Co. ), Hoboken, N.J. She commissioned 7 September 1942, Captain Harold J. Wright commanding.

The transport was slated for participation in the North Africa landings, the giant amphibious assault mounted across the entire width of the Atlantic. Hugh L. Scott joined Transport Division 3 for this, our brst offensive move in the European-African theater, and sailed 24

October after intensive amphibious training. She approached the beaches at Fedhala, French Morocco, early on the morning of 8 November and after bombardment by surface ships, landed her troops. Scott then cleared the immediate invasion area, and did not return until 11 November, when she entered the refueling area and then anchored in the exposed Fedhala roadstead tn unlead her supplies.

During the evening of 11 November, German submarine U-178 slipped inside the proteotive screen to torpedo transport Joseph Hewe&, tanker Winooski, and destroyer Hamberton. nugh L. Scott and the other transports went to battle stations the entire night, and resumed unloading tbe next clay. That afternoon, 12 November, another submarine, U-150, stalked the transports and torpedoed Hugh L. Scott, Edward Rutledge, and Tasker H. Bliss. Scott, hit on the starboard side, burst into flames and foundered, but owing to the availability of' landing craft for rescue, casualties were held to a minimum— 8 officers and 51 men. U-178 was later sunk by destroyers, but U-150 escaped.


Building

The vessel was designed to be a troopship, [ 1 ] ordered by the USSB from Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation, Sparrows Point, Maryland, and laid down in 1920. Her intended name was to be Berrien, but when she was launched on 17 April 1921, it was as Hawkeye State. [ 1 ]

Hawkeye State was a turbine steamship, with four steam turbines driving twin propeller shafts by single reduction gearing. [ 2 ] These gave her a speed of up to 18 knots (33 km/h) [ 1 ] – as fast as many ocean liners of her era.


USS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)


USS Hugh L. Scott on 14 Sep, 1942. US Naval Historical Center Photograph #19-N-34581

This is a listing of people associated with this ship.
We also have a detailed page on the American troop transport USS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43).

Aboard USS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) when hit on 12 Nov 1942

You can click on any of the names for possible additional information

NameAgeRankServed on
Bournazian, Paul S., USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Bright, Paul Robert, USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Campbell, William A., USNR Machinist's Mate First ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Carroll, Thelbert Sebern, USN18Crew memberUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
DiNitto, Angelo Henry, USNR21Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Dolan, John Charles, USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Dusenberry, Charles K., USN Fireman First ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Enright, John P., USNR Seaman First ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Fontana, Albert Vincent, USN29Chief Commissary StewardUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Gann, Warren Junior, USN20Watertender First ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Herbert, Leroy John, USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Hiner, Warren Stanley, USNR Ship's Cook Third ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Hobbs, E.D., USN Electrician's Mate Third ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Iudiciani, Vincenzo, USN22Crew memberUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Jacobs, Sanford F., USN18Chief Navigation OfficerUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Kazlow, Vincent A., USNR Chief StewardUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Kelly, Charles Henry, USN Chief Commissary StewardUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Kinsman, Leo F., USN Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Klimczak, Florian, USN Fireman First ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Larsien, Richard Leon, USNR21Machinist’s Mate First ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Lavinder, James M., USN Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Lewis, Eugene A.L., USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Low, Dean Gordon, USN Machinist's Mate Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Marconi, Geoffrey L., USNR Fireman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Marone, Richard V., USNR Fireman Third ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Mashburn, Elvin Gordon, USNR PassengerUSS Hambleton (DD 455), USS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
McGinn, Robert E., USNR Fireman First ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
McMahon, George J., USNR Fireman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
McMahon, Roger J., USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Mitchell, Arthur A., USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Nydegger, Richard J., USN Fireman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Pattison, Robert E., USN Boilerman First ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Pennell, John Harlan, USN Fireman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Price, Clifford James, USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Price, Oscar D., USN Fireman First ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Puk, Joseph Stanley, USNR Fireman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Rasicavage, Stanley J., USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Rayburn, Parnell, USNR Fireman First ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Reilly, John J., USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Rogers, Walter Joseph, USNR Fireman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Schroder, Robert, USN Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Singer, Frank Joseph, USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Skopek, Joseph Walter, USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Sparks, Herman Troy, USN Fireman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Stark, Jack Otto, USN Machinist's Mate First ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Stoddard, James A., USNR Warrant OfficerUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Stump, Wilbur Doyt, USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Sutherland, Fred C., USN Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Theis, Frank V., USNR Lieutenant CommanderUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Turner, Lowell Ray, USN Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Vallandingham, Carl, USN Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Wallace, Robert W., USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Whitney, Thomas Earl, USNR Shipfitter Third ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Williams, Harold Eugene, USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Williamson, John H., USNR Seaman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +
Wright, Harold J., USN CaptainUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43)
Wyatt, Charles N., USN Fireman Second ClassUSS Hugh L. Scott (AP 43) +

Served on indicates the ships we have listed for the person, some were stationed on multiple ships hit by U-boats.

People missing from this listing? Or perhaps additional information?
If you wish to add a crewmember to the listing we would need most of this information: ship name, nationality, name, dob, place of birth, service (merchant marine, . ), rank or job on board. We have place for a photo as well if provided. You can e-mail us the information here.


Badger State · Bay State · Buckeye State · Empire State · Golden State · Hawkeye State · Hoosier State · Keystone State · Lone Star State · Nutmeg State · Palmetto State · Peninsula State · Pine Tree State · Silver State · Southern Cross · Wenatchee

Bluegrass State · Cotton State · Sunflower State


Hugh L. Scott AP-43 - History

NOTE: Items marked with an asterisk (*) have been proofread.
Please contact us ([email protected]) before starting to proofread, to avoid duplication of effort.

27 January 2019

17 March 2013

6 March 2013

  • US NAVAL VESSELS INDEX. (ONI-51-I) (Issued 12-43.) (PDF only)
  • USN NAVAL AUXILIARIES (ONI-51-A) (Issued 9/5/43) (PDF only)
  • U.S. LANDING CRAFT (ONI-54-LC) (Issued 8-4-43) (PDF only)
  • US COAST GUARD VESSELS (ONI-56-CG) (Issued 9/5/43) (PDF only)
  • US NAVAL VESSELS (ONI-54-R) Supplement 4 (Issued 8-4-43) (PDF only)
  • United Kingdom Naval Vessels (ONI 201)
  • Warships of the British Commonwealth(PDF only)
  • Italian Naval Vessels [ONI 202] PDF
  • German Naval Vessels [ONI 204]
  • Standard Classes of Japanese Merchant Ships (ONI-208-J) PDF
  • SHIP SHAPES: Anatomy and Types of Naval Vessels. (ONI-223) (PDF only)
  • ALLIED LANDING CRAFT AND SHIPS. (ONI-226) (PDF only)
  • Japanese Military Aircraft (ONI-232 ONI-232-S)

Post Mortem No. 1 has been added. (Better copy needed.)

18 February 2013

POST MORTEMS ON ENEMY SUBMARINES

DIVISION OF NAVAL INTELLIGENCE

(PDF copies via links in table)

These booklets, mostly less than fifty pages, contain as much intelligence as could be shared at the time from what had been collected from the sub and/or crews.
This table will be updated as new files are added and bumped to the top of this page.

(We do not have No. 1. A paper copy in good condition or a high quality PDF would be very welcome. Any other serial nos. we don't have, same-same.)

Final Report of Interrogation of Survivors from U-352 Sunk By USCG Icarus on May 9, 1942, in Approximate Postiion Latitude 34.12.04 N., Longitude 76.35 W.

Report of Interrogation of Survivors of U-701 Sunk by U.S. Army Attack Bomber NO. 9-29-322, Unit 296 B.S. on July 7, 1942.

Report of Interrogation of Survivors of U-210 Sunk by HMCS Assiniboine August 6, 1942.

Report of Interrogation of Survivors From U-94 Sunk (by USN PBY Plane and HMCS Oakville) On August 27, 1942.

Report of Interrogation of Survivors From U-162 Sunk (by HM Ships Pathfinder, Vimy, and Quentin) on September 3, 1942.

Report of Interrogation of Survivors From U-595 Grounded and Scuttled Off Cape Khamis, Algeria, November 14, 1942.

Report of Interrogation of Survivors From U-164 Sunk by US PBY On January 6, 1943.

Report of Interrogation of Sole Survivor From U-512 Sunk by US Army Bomber (B-18A) on October 2, 1942.

Report of Interrogation of Survivors From U-606 Sunk by Polish Destoryer Burza and USCG Campbell on February 22, 1943.

15 February 20123


Biography

Born September 22, 1853 in Danville, Kentucky, he grew up there and in Princeton, New Jersey where he attended The Lawrenceville School.

He graduated from West Point in 1876 (his Cullum Number was 2628), and was commissioned in the Cavalry. For some twenty years thereafter he served on the Western frontier, chiefly with the 7th United States Cavalry. He was assigned to the quarters only recently vacated by the widow of George Armstrong Custer. In fact, Scott was sent out to the Little Big Horn battle site to mark gravesites for Custer's men killed in the battle. He also had the opportunity to interview many of the Native Americans who fought on both sides of the battle on June 25, 1876. He saw action in campaigns against the Sioux, Nez Perce, Cheyenne and other tribes of the Great Plains and became an expert in their languages and ways of life. He was promoted to First Lieutenant in June 1878.

About 1889, while stationed with the 7th Cavalry at Fort Sill in Oklahoma, Scott made the acquaintance of an Indian scout name I-See-O (Plenty Fires) of the Kiowa tribe. I-See-O enlisted in the Indian Scouts in 1889 and taught Scott Native American sign language and techniques of frontier warfare. When Scott was given command of Troop L of the regiment, he has I-See-O serve as his first sergeant. During the ghost dance phenomenon of the early 1890s, I-See-O helped in persuading the Apache and Kiowa tribes not to go to war. This action, while serving the interest of white settlers and speculators, undoubtedly also saved the lives of many Native Americans. Scott's gratitude to I-See-O was such that, when he was Chief of Staff of the Army, he allowed for Sergeant I-See-O to remain on active duty for life. [2]

In 1890-91 he was given the responsibility for suppressing the "Ghost Dance" religious movement that swept the Indian Reservations and received official commendation for that work. In 1892, he organized Troop L of the 7th Cavalry, composed of Kiowa, Comanche and Apache Indians, and commanded it until it was mustered out, the last Indian unit in the United States Army, in 1897. In 1894-97, he had charge of Geronimo's band of Chiricahua Apache Indian prisoners at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. He was promoted to captain in January 1895, having served as a first lieutenant for 16 and a half years.

In November 1897 he was attached to the Bureau of American Ethnology of the Smithsonian Institution, where he began preparing a work on Indian sign languages. In May 1898, after the outbreak of the Spanish–American War, he was appointed major of Volunteers and Assistant Adjutant General of the 2nd and 3rd Divisions, I Corps. He saw no action in that war, but in March 1899 went to Cuba as Adjutant General of the Department of Havana, with the rank of lieutenant colonel of Volunteers.

In May 1900 he became adjutant general of the Department of Cuba and remained in that post until May 1902. During that time he served for a time as acting governor and took an active part in the transfer of government into Cuban hands. He was promoted to major in the Regular Army in February 1903 and served as Military Governor of the Sulu Archipelago, Philippines, in 1903-06 and also commanded troops there, taking part in various skirmishes, reorganized the civil government and institutions.

In August 1906 he was named Superintendent of The United States Military Academy (West Point), a post he held for four years with the temporary rank of colonel. He was promoted to permanent lieutenant colonel in March 1911 and in colonel in August of the same year. He then commanded the 3rd U.S. Cavalry Regiment in Texas, engaged in settling various Indian troubles.

In March 1913 he was promoted to brigadier general in command of the 2nd Cavalry Brigade, still posted to the Southwest. He won special commendation for his skillful handling of Navajo disturbances at Beautiful Mountain, Arizona, in November 1913. He was named Assistant Chief of Staff in April 1914 and Chief of Staff of the United States Army from 1914 to 1917, including the first few months of American involvement in World War I. He was promoted to major general in April 1915. He continued to act in a diplomatic role with Indians and Mexican border officials in the Southwest, settling problems with the Paiutes of Utah in March 1915 and recovering property "confiscated" by Pancho Villa in August.

From February to March 1916, he served as ad-interim Secretary of War but his energies were directed more toward preparation for possible U.S. entry into World War I. He was very influential in winning early acceptance among civil officials of the notion of conscription. He retired at the statutory age in September 1917 but remained on active duty. He became commander of the 78th Division at Camp Dix, New Jersey, in December and of Camp Dix again in March 1918. He retired finally in May 1919 and served on the Board of Indian Commissioners from 1919 to 1929 and was Chairman of the New Jersey State Highway Commission from 1923 to 1933. In 1928 he published an autobiography, "Some Memories of A Soldier."

He died at Washington, D.C. on April 30, 1934 and was buried among many other family members in Section 2 of Arlington National Cemetery. There is a large bas relief Memorial Plaque in his honor in the Washington National Cathedral.


WW II Vet John Edward O’Hara, of Narragansett, Dies at 99

John was born March 20, 1921 in Reddish, Stockport, England, the son of John O&rsquoHara and Clara &ldquoWorthington&rdquo O&rsquoHara. The family immigrated to America when John was 2 years old, moving to Riverside, RI before settling in North Providence, Rhode Island. As a child, John lived through The Great Depression. During John&rsquos teenage years, he became a graduate of La Salle Academy before joining the Civilian Conservation Corps (the CCC), Unit- S 51, Charlestown, RI @ Burlingame&rsquos road building crew.

In 1942, John enlisted in the U.S. Navy immediately after the Pearl Harbor attack leading to WWII. John bravely served in the three major theatres of WWII: the European Theatre, the Pacific Theatre, and the Mediterranean- African & Middle East Theatre. It was during &ldquoOperation Torch&rdquo, the invasion of North Africa that he served with the Western Task Force (Battle of Casablanca) under commanders, Major General George S. Patton, and Rear Admiral Henry Kent Hewitt. On November 12, 1942 - while below deck on the USS Hugh L. Scott (AP-43), a German submarine, U-130 torpedoed the Hugh L. Scott, hitting the starboard side which burst into flames. Wounded and fighting for his life, John was able to get out before the ship floundered, awarding him a purple heart.

After recovery John was assigned as a member of the crew of the USS Alabama (BB60) Battleship where he served until the end of the war. John served as Gun Captain of the 40 MM anti-aircraft guns and crew. During his tour of duty on board the Alabama, John was engaged in many furious naval battles!

In 1943, the Alabama was involved in the Invasion of Sicily, Operation Zitronella, and Operation Governor, against the German naval force. August 1943, the USS Alabama left the Atlantic for the Pacific for operations against Japan. The Alabama joined the Fast Carrier Task Force (T38 3rd Fleet & T58 5th fleet) under Admirals Raymond "Quiet Warrior" Spruance, William "Bull" Halsey and John "Slew" McCain Sr. John soon rose to the rank of Gun Captain of the 40 MM anti-aircraft guns. In November of 1943, the Alabama took part in Operation Galvanic&mdashTarawa and Makin Islands and participated in Operation "Forager during the spring of 1944. The Alabama saw heavy action at the Battles of the Philippine Sea, and the battles at Okinawa, Luzon, Kwajalein and Surigao Strait. During a major Battle of Leyte Gulf and specifically the Battle off Cape Engaño, the American fleet destroyed four Japanese carriers and damaged two battleships in what is known as the Liberation of the Philippines. In December 1944, the Alabama encountered the fierce typhoon &ldquoCobra&rdquo that sank three American destroyers and caused the Alabama to roll more than 30 degrees.

In May of 1945 off the Japanese home island of Kyushu, the American fleet came under intense aerial attack. The USS Alabama&rsquos Gun Captain John O&rsquoHara expertly commanded his 40 MM anti-aircraft gun crew who successfully shot down two Japanese aircraft and helped to destroy two others. One kamikaze nevertheless penetrated the fleet's anti-aircraft defenses and struck the USS Enterprise (CV-6) carrier.

The Alabama nicknamed &ldquoThe Might A&rdquo led the U.S. fleet into Tokyo Bay after the formal surrender, and documents were signed on September 2, 1945. As a crew member, John often referred to being part of a proud moment in U.S. history.

During Johns&rsquo military career he had engaged in 13 major battles. He is the recipient of the Purple Heart, 13 Battle Stars, and 2 Silver & 3 Bronze Stars along with numerous other medals & ribbons. John ended his tour of duty in November of 1945.

John is an Honoree at the National WWII Memorial, Washington DC, The National WWII Museum, New Orleans, LA, The National Purple Heart Hall of Honor, New Windsor, NY, the USS Alabama Battleship Memorial, Mobile, AL, and the U.S.S Arizona Memorial at Bolin Memorial Park, Phoenix, AZ (dedicated brick).

John was a man of many talents. He was a professional photographer for over 50 years, and authored two books of poems: &ldquoShirley, His Only Love&rdquo, and &ldquoWorld War II&rdquo. He appeared in three WWII documentaries and one Japanese documentary on Okinawa. John&rsquos war memoirs and poems are registered at the Navy College Library of Newport, Rhode Island.

After the war, John moved to NYC to work at The New York Journal-American daily newspaper. Before returning to Rhode Island, he was hired at the United States Postal service and enjoyed a 34-year career rising to the position of Postmaster before retiring.

In 1961, John met with President John F. Kennedy. The momentous occasion was documented by a photograph of both men discussing a US Postal bill.

John was a member of numerous organizations including AARP, NARFE, Silver Hair Legislators, Seekonk School committee & Town Representative member. He was also an honored member of Kelly Gazzerro-VFW Post 2812 of Cranston, RI

In his senior years, John dedicated his time to touring the local schools of Rhode Island, New London Counties of Connecticut and Bristol Counties of Massachusetts delivering lectures to children and young adults on his experience during WWII. Throughout this time, John was able to meet and have a positive impact on many wonderful young men & women before their journey into adulthood.

John was a proud parishioner of Saint Peters by the Sea Episcopal Church, Narragansett, RI.

John was the husband of the late Shirley Elizabeth (Johnson) who was the love of his life. On April 23, 1949, the two were married and moved to Seekonk, Ma. Since 1955 John and Shirley summered in Breakwater Village, Point Judith, Narragansett where they finally settled during their sunset years.

On January 4, 2004 after 55 years of marriage, Shirley went home to God. John has now rejoined Shirley and they will be together for eternity.

Besides his wife, John leaves behind 6 sons: Michael & his wife Diane of Detroit, MI, Wayne & his wife Grace of Somerville, Mass, Brian & his wife Judith of Jamestown, RI, Brett of Providence, Dale & his wife Sherri of Narragansett, RI, and Jason of Seekonk, Mass. He was the brother to six siblings: the late Robert J. O&rsquoHara & his wife Brenda of San Diego, Ca, his sister the late Irene Foster, and the late siblings who passed as toddlers Mary, Marjorie, William, & George. John also leaves behind 16 grandchildren, 15 great grandchildren, 14 nieces and nephews, and numerus cousins from U.S., England & Australia.

As one of his last wishes, John requested that a personal heartfelt thank you be sent to all who cared for him and helped keep him living for a century! The three women that cared for him and as John referred to as, Johnnie&rsquos Angels are Sherri L. O&rsquoHara, Rebecca L. Gilbert RN, Bandy Gomez C.N.A. He was also grateful to his dedicated son Dale, as well as his medical team: Dr. Lidia A. Vognar, Dr. Angela M. Taber, Dr. Peter Pleasants, the wonderful men and women on the Narragansett Fire & Rescue Department and the nursing staff at South County Hospital & Home Care.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude Children&rsquos Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105

Due to COVID-19 the funeral will be private and a memorial /celebration of life will be held in the summer or fall of 2021.

To send sympathy gifts to the family or plant a tree in memory of John Edward O'Hara, please visit our tribute store.

Ranked among the top two percent of funeral homes nationwide, the Pursuit of Excellence Program's award recipients are dedicated to maintaining a positive image for funeral service by consistently providing outstanding service to families, ongoing education to staff and adherence to only the highest ethical and professional standards. Created in 2006, the Hall of Excellence Award recognizes funeral homes for their dedication to evaluating and improving their level of service to families and communities. Upon receiving its tenth Pursuit of Excellence Award, a funeral home will be inducted into the Hall of Excellence.


A Brilliant But Doomed Mission

Naiche, the youngest son of Chiricahua Apache Chief Cochise, was among the three Apache leaders who signed on to U.S. Army Capt. Hugh L. Scott’s plan. Photographed here with wife Haozinne, he rode with Geronimo in a number of reservation breakouts, surrendered in 1886 and lived as a prisoner of war in Florida, Alabama and ultimately Fort Sill in Oklahoma. He died on the Mescalero Reservation in New Mexico in 1919.
– True West Archives –

Imagine Oklahoma Territory’s Fort Sill in 1895, almost 10 years after the surrender of Geronimo.

Imagine Mexico’s Sierra Madre, where hit-and-run attacks by Apaches on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border continued to create chaos.

Imagine what we would call today a “Special Ops” assignment, 1895 style, that could have prevented further devastating upheaval and turmoil.

Hunting Deer with a Brass Band

The Apache Kid and fellow warrior Massai were still on the loose in the late 1800s. Adelnietze and Natculbaye (José María Elias) continued to raid. Apaches attacked and killed Mormon and Mexican ranchers. They stole cattle and welcomed runaways from the reservations. Even roughly a century later, whispers endure, of Apaches living among the narcotraficantes or hiding in plain sight as residents of small rancherías or pueblos.

The military had seemingly forgotten how it once tracked the insurgents with Apache scouts, mules and gutsy troopers. United States Army Capt. Hugh L. Scott claimed that, instead of tracking swiftly and striking with deadly force, his soldiers were “hunting deer with a brass band!”

Scott’s colorful description of military incompetence, written years after he departed Fort Sill, must have made his military cohorts and Mexican counterparts want to hide under the table. And well they should have because Scott, while serving at Fort Sill as a first lieutenant in the 7th Cavalry, had devised a simple and workable strategy that could have succeeded in capturing the bronco Apaches. He described in his 1928 memoirs precisely what his plan envisioned in 1895.

Why was this special operation never carried out by the military?

Threat of Outbreak

Scott was well respected by American Indians, and particularly Apaches, as he advocated on their behalf. Having been dispatched to Florida and Alabama hellholes, Apaches were unhappy, dying and miserable. The military ultimately moved them to Fort Sill in Oklahoma. Both Scott and interpreter George Wratten moved with them, helping to set up private enclaves along the creeks and hidden arroyos of that military installation to give the men and their families some semblance of dignity.

Even those Apaches perceived as the most warlike had settled down and become good leaders they kept order and worked hard at hauling hay, raising cattle, growing melons and corn, and learning English. Many of their children had been sent to boarding schools to become “tame” Indians. Geronimo, Naiche, Yanosha, Toclanny, Perico and Kaytennae, among others, seemed to be getting used to this new way of life.

Nevertheless, the fear of the warrior culture, which had caused violence and mayhem in Arizona and New Mexico during the Apache campaigns, prevented any logical discussion about returning Apaches to their homelands anytime soon. These leaders were still in their prime. Should they escape, the military believed war would break out once again.
The Apaches ached to see mountains, drink the fresh water from cascading waterfalls, hunt wild turkey, deer and elk, and sit at night talking and smoking together around their campfires. The white man’s rules against the old ways wore thin, but had to be followed. Under such circumstances, yearning for one’s homeland and dreaming of a return could become an obsession.

When Scott heard about runaways and rumors of possible outbreaks from Fort Sill, he called together a group of Apache leaders. He pointed out to them that if they, or their older children in schools farther east, tried such a move, he would hunt them down and fire upon them. He showed the Apaches that he had equipment, mules and rations for 20 days, should any of them try to escape.

He had a map drawn up by a Mescalero that covered the entire gamut of possible escape routes to New Mexico. This map, Scott wrote, showed the “trail with all its water holes over the 700 miles to the Mescalero Agency…copies of this map were sent to the department commanders to enable him to cut off the runaways” should that threat ever arise.

The problem was that the map pretty much ended at the Mescalero Agency. What about on down into Mexico, into the depths of the old Apache strongholds? Something needed to be done to prevent any such false hope of freedom in joining the Sierra Madre Apaches.

Scott wrote: “When the Apaches first arrived at Fort Sill and several years after the surrender those who had known them in Arizona predicted their escape to old Mexico…that was the common belief.”

Ten years later, the fear remained. How to counter that concern was a subject of much discussion.

Trust the Apaches

Realizing that all of “his Apaches” were extremely familiar with the Sierra Madre strongholds, Scott knew that chasing the so-called renegades without their help would not be successful. Using Apache scouts prior to 1886 led to the surrender of Geronimo, a lesson some in the military had apparently forgotten.

If the three leaders with whom he worked wanted to return to their Southwestern homelands before they became toothless old men, perhaps he could convince them to become part of a strategic plan he was formulating. If this daring plan was accomplished, it would be proof that the Apaches could be trusted citizens and might lessen the burden of their prisoner of war status and continued imprisonment. It would also save innumerable lives.

Scott submitted his plan first to Col. Henry Ware Lawton, inspector general, who in turn sent it to Gen. Nelson Miles. Both approved the plan. No doubt Miles was aware of the depredations, even after he and his troops supposedly ended the Apache Wars.

Scott discussed his clever and succinct plan with his three head Apaches: Naiche, Toclanny and Kaytennae. They agreed to his terms, almost surprisingly, since his proposal included holding their families essentially as hostages to ensure their loyalty not to escape.

Why the leaders agreed so willingly is puzzling. Scott was the Indah (white man) whom they had to obey while they were still POWs. Did they think they could escape and later retrieve their families? Did they believe at least they, as warriors, could live like free men and have their families safe at Fort Sill? They respected Scott and recognized that he was an honorable man who had helped them in many ways. They also knew he would not harm innocent women and children.

For the journey, Scott intended to accompany the three Apache leaders, along with 15 officers and troops. His plan “was to go west on a hunting trip from Fort Sill, telling no one of their destination…taking also [Allyn] Capron, [Thomas] Clancy and about 15 officers and sergeants picked for such service and boarding a train somewhere in the Southwest…. [Henry] Lawton agreed to have supplies and a pack train waiting for us at Fort Bowie, Arizona and we would start out ostensibly to hunt, moving slowly outside the foothills of the Sierra Madre in old Mexico, chasing deer and small game.”

They were to allow the scouts time to examine the trails and to track anyone they felt was part of the renegade band into their strongholds. However, they were not to go into the camps. They were to return to the troops, unseen. Then the three Apaches would lead them to within a night’s ride of the outlaw camps, surrounding the renegades before daybreak, bringing surprise on their side.

No doubt the preference was to bring the Apache broncos in peacefully. But would they surrender without a fight? The team was more than well armed, and apparently Scott had no qualms about who would have the upper hand.

Plan of Action Foiled

Scott traveled to Washington, D.C. to follow through with this plan. Everyone was on edge, hoping for a quick approval from Mexican Minister Matías Romero. Then the plan was blown to hell. Romero “refused to allow us to enter Mexico unless on a hot trail within certain limits of the Border, as laid down in a treaty with Mexico,” Scott wrote.

Those limits did not include the region that was crucial to the operation. And any “hot pursuit” would have alerted the renegades, adding fuel to the fire of angry, displaced and resentful enemies.

One can just imagine the extreme disappointment of all those involved. Some may have thought about crossing the border without permission, much as they had always done.

We will never know for sure the backroom scenarios that foiled the plan, but this one could have saved lives and created goodwill among citizens of both nations. Naiche, Toclanny and Kaytennae, three prominent warriors, could have been credited with their assistance to the military and been pardoned. If the operation had been approved by Mexican officials, then the many killings, raids and anxiety that kept the borderlands in turmoil for at least another 40 years could have all been avoided.

But fate had the last laugh. Through official Mexican intransigence, a precious opportunity to end Apache raids was lost forever to the mists of time.

The eventual violence, capturing of children, death and destruction of the Apaches could have been avoided if U.S. Army Capt. Hugh L. Scott (above) had gotten his plan approved for an 1895 special operation into the Sierra Madre Mountains. Dozens of men, women and children were killed or maimed from 1895 through the late 1930s.
– Courtesy Fort Sill National Historic Landmark and Museum Archives –

The Fenn Brothers in a 1924 photo represented yet another group searching for Apaches in Mexico’s Sierra Madre, southern Arizona and New Mexico. (From left) Joe, Moroni, Alvah and Pete.
– Courtesy Lynda A. Sánchez/Eve Ball Collection –

Lynda A. Sánchez researches Apache history, legend and lore, following the footsteps of her mentor, Eve Ball. She is revising a soon-to-be-published manuscript about the lost Apaches. Material for this article comes from Angie Debo’s Geronimo: The Man, His Time, His Place and Hugh L. Scott’s Some Memories of a Soldier.

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Lynda A. Sánchez earned the 2007 Preservation Award recognizing her work in saving New Mexico’s Fort Stanton, a story she shares in her book Legacy of Honor, Tradition of Healing: Fort Stanton. She and her family live on a small ranch along the Bonito River in southern New Mexico. Her time in the Peace Corps in South America, her archaeological field work at Mesa Verde and in Mexico and Belize all guided her to the colorful mosaic of folk heroes, legends and the incredible history of the American Southwest. Sánchez is also an advocate for the preservation of our veterans’ legacy.


Hugh L. Scott AP-43 - History

According to our records Pennsylvania was his home or enlistment state and Luzerne County included within the archival record. We have Plymouth listed as the city. He had enlisted in the United States Navy. Served during World War II. Rasicavage had the rank of Enlisted. His military occupation or specialty was Seaman Second Class. Service number assignment was 6506572. Attached to USS Hugh L Scott (AP-43). During his service in World War II, Navy enlisted man Rasicavage was reported missing and ultimately declared dead on November 12, 1942 . Recorded circumstances attributed to: Missing in action. Incident location: Algerian-Morocco Landings, North Africa. He was reported Missing on November 12, 1942 during the landings at Algeria. He was officially declared dead on November 13, 1943. Stanley Joseph Rasicavage is buried or memorialized at Tablets of the Missing North Africa American Cemetery Carthage, Tunisia. This is an American Battle Monuments Commission location.

Born September 22, 1853 in Danville, Kentucky, he grew up there and in Princeton, New Jersey where he attended The Lawrenceville School.

He graduated from Little Big Horn battle site to mark gravesites for Custer's men killed in the battle. He also had the opportunity to interview many of the Native Americans who fought on both sides of the battle on June 25, 1876. He saw action in campaigns against the Sioux, Nez Perce, Cheyenne and other tribes of the Great Plains and became an expert in their languages and ways of life. He was promoted to First Lieutenant in June 1878.

About 1889, while stationed with the 7th Cavalry at Fort Sill in Oklahoma, Scott made the acquaintance of an Indian scout name I-See-O (Plenty Fires) of the Kiowa tribe. I-See-O enlisted in the Indian Scouts in 1889 and taught Scott Native American sign language and techniques of frontier warfare. When Scott was given command of Troop L of the regiment, he has I-See-O serve as his first sergeant. During the ghost dance phenomenon of the early 1890s, I-See-O helped in persuading the Apache and Kiowa tribes not to go to war. This action, while serving the interest of white settlers and speculators, undoubtedly also saved the lives of many Native Americans. Scott's gratitude to I-See-O was such that, when he was Chief of Staff of the Army, he allowed for Sergeant I-See-O to remain on active duty for life. [2]

In 1890-91 he was given the responsibility for suppressing the "Geronimo's band of Chiricahua Apache Indian prisoners at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. He was promoted to captain in January 1895, having served as a first lieutenant for 16 and a half years.

In November 1897 he was attached to the Bureau of American Ethnology of the Smithsonian Institution, where he began preparing a work on Indian sign languages. In May 1898, after the outbreak of the Spanish–American War, he was appointed major of Volunteers and Assistant Adjutant General of the 2nd and 3rd Divisions, I Corps. He saw no action in that war, but in March 1899 went to Cuba as Adjutant General of the Department of Havana, with the rank of lieutenant colonel of Volunteers.

In May 1900 he became adjutant general of the Department of Cuba and remained in that post until May 1902. During that time he served for a time as acting governor and took an active part in the transfer of government into Cuban hands. He was promoted to major in the Regular Army in February 1903 and served as Military Governor of the Sulu Archipelago, Philippines, in 1903-06 and also commanded troops there, taking part in various skirmishes, reorganized the civil government and institutions.

In August 1906 he was named Superintendent of The United States Military Academy (West Point), a post he held for four years with the temporary rank of colonel. He was promoted to permanent lieutenant colonel in March 1911 and in colonel in August of the same year. He then commanded the 3rd U.S. Cavalry Regiment in Texas, engaged in settling various Indian troubles.

In March 1913 he was promoted to brigadier general in command of the 2nd Cavalry Brigade, still posted to the Southwest. He won special commendation for his skillful handling of Navajo disturbances at Beautiful Mountain, Arizona, in November 1913. He was named Assistant Chief of Staff in April 1914 and Chief of Staff of the United States Army from 1914 to 1917, including the first few months of American involvement in World War I. He was promoted to major general in April 1915. He continued to act in a diplomatic role with Indians and Mexican border officials in the Southwest, settling problems with the Piutes of Utah in March 1915 and recovering property "confiscated" by Pancho Villa in August.