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THE CHIEF OF ENGINEERS,
UNITED STATES ARMY.
OFFICE OF THE CHIEF OF ENGINEERS,
UNITED STATES ARMY,
Washington, D. C., October 16, 1885. SIR: I have the honor to present for your information the following report upon the duties and operations of the Engineer Department for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1885:
OFFICERS OF THE CORPS OF ENGINEERS. The number of officers holding commissions in the Corps of Engineers, United States Army, at the end of the fiscal year was 107 on the active list, seven of whom were graduates of the Military Academy and commissioned second lieutenants, Corps of Engineers, to date June 15, 1984, and eight on the retired list; the latter, however, under section 1259 Revised Statutes, not being available for duty.
Since the last annual report the Corps has lost by resignation one of its officers, Capt. James Mercur, to take effect September 30, 1884, who entered the United States Military Academy at West Point as Professor in Civil and Military Engineering,
There have been added to the Corps by promotion of graduates of the Military Academy two second lieutenants whose commissions date from June 14, 1885, but they did not become available for duty until after the close of the fiscal year, and are therefore not included in the strength of the Corps.
On the 30th of June, 1887, the officers were distributed as follows:
, Board of Engineers, Board of Visitors, and Battalion of Engineers.
, Mississippi River and Missouri River Commissions, and Board of Engineers, Board of Visitors, and Mississippi River Commission.
River and harbor works
Board of Engineers, Board of Visitors, and light house duty...
divisions and departments, Light House Establishment, Military Academy,
100 The officers detached were on duty as follows: Col. Thomas L. Casey, in charge of the construction of the building for the State,
War, and Navy Departments; of the Washington National Monument; of the improvement over the grave of Thomas Jefferson, at Monticello, Va.; of the erection of a monument at Washington's Headquarters at Newburgh, N. Y.; of the erection of building for the Ariny Medical Museum and Library and erection of a statue to the late President Gartield; member of Allvisory Board to Committee on Ventilation and Acoustics of the Honse of Representatives; member of Light-House Board
1 Maj. Jared A. Smith, engineer fifth and sixth light-house districts
1 Maj. David P. Heap, engineer secretary to Light-House Board.. Maj. William R. Livermore, on staff of Commanding General, Department of
Texas. Maj. William S. Stanton anil Lieut. William M. Black, on duty with Company F,
Battalion of Engineers, and at Military Academy Maj. Thomas H. Handbury, on staff of Commanding General, Division of the Missouri..
1 Capt. James F. Gregory, on staff of Lieutenant General of the Army
1 Capt. Charles E. L. B. Davis, engineer tenth and eleventh light-bouse districts. 1 Capt John C. Mallery, engineer fourth light-house district..
1 Capt. Thomas Turtle, secretary and disbursing officer of The Mississippi River Commission....
1 Capts. Frederick A. Maban, Francis V. Greene, and Lieut. Curtis McD. Townsend,
assistants to Engineer Commissioner, District of Columbia .. Capt. Joseph H. Willard, secretary and assistant to construction committee of The Mississippi River Commission
1 Lieut. Dan C. Kingman, on statt of Commanding General, Department of the Platte 1 Lieuts. Eugene Griffin and Gustav J. Fiebeger, on duty at the Military Academy. 2 Lieut. Walter L. Fisk, secretary and disbursing otficer of The Missouri River Commission..
1 Lieut. Thomas L. Casey, on staff of Commanding General, Division of the Pacific
and Department of California Lieut. Theodore A. Bingham, on staff of Commanding General, Department of Arizona.
1 Lieut. John Millis, on duty mder the immediate orders of Colonel Duane as his assistant in connection with experiments upon electric lighting
1 Lieut. John Biddle, on staff of Coinmanding General, Deparument of Dakota 1
SEA-COAST AND LAKE-FRONTIER DEFENSES.
During the year operations have been restricted to those necessary for the preservation and repair of existing works.
As far as available funds would admit, the platforms were put in serviceable order of ten aud tifteen-inch smooth-bore guns, of mortars, and of rifle guns bearing upon the channels of entrance to the various harbors, as well as the necessary magazines pertaining thereto.
The subject of the defensive system of the country, so far as regards the ports at which fortifications or other defenses are most urgeutly required, having been referred by Congress to a Board of which the Secretary of War is president, it would be inexpedient at this time for me to treat the subject further, especially as I had the honor in my last annual report to call attention to the defenseless state of the sea-coast, and to present estimates for fortifying certain important harbors.
The following estimates for the modification and repair of existing works, for torpedoes, &c., are respectfully submitted :
ESTIMATES OF APPROPRIATIONS REQUIRED FOR 1886–87.
$9,000 00 50,000 00
10, 000 00 500, 000 00
For acquisition of sites of two Martello towers at Key West, Fla., by
purchase or condemnation..
Fort Marion, Florida :
it was left by the Spaniards..
there may be no special appropriation available....:
them, for closing the channels leading to our principal sea-ports..
175, 000 00
300, 000 00
200, 000 00
30, 000 00
1, 274, 000 00
DEFENSES OF THE NORTHERN FRONTIER.
Fort Wayne, Michigan, in charge of Lieut. Col. 0. M. Poe, Corps of Engineers. This work is situated on the west bank of Detroit River, adjacent to the city of Detroit, and is intended to command the chandel of the river.
It is a nearly square bastioned work, commenced in 1841, having a scarp-wall of brick and concrete in place of the original timber scarp, a detached parapet of brick on the curtains and faces, and unfinished water-batteries on the up-stream and down-stream sides.
The construction of the fort in its present form was commenced in 1862, and completed in 1871; its repair was begun in 1882, and was completed in September, 1883.
Since the last Annual Report repairs on the fort have been confined to the renewal of the demilune magazine roof and of the parade revetment on the southwestern front.
These were done by contract and agreement with A. J. Dupuis, and were completed in November, 1884.
No estimate of funds required to complete the work is submitted. No appropriation was made for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1886. No appropriation asked for next fiscal year.
Fort Porter, Black Rock, near Buffalo, New York, in charge of Capt. Edward Maguire, Corps of Engineers.—This work, commenced in 1812, is situated on the Niagara River, within the limits of the city of Buffalo, and consists of a square stone tower or keep, in ruins, surrounded by a square barbette battery.
The keep was nearly destroyed by fire many years ago, and the entire work is, in its present condition, useless for offense or defense.
By joint resolution of Congress, approved July 11, 1870, published in General Orders 93, July 22, 1870, permission was granted to the city of Buffalo, through its park commissioners, “to improve and beautify the grounds known as Fort Porter, situated in said city, and belonging to