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Diary of
Earl Bohannon
(Personal accounts of the
Spanish-American War of 1898)
With associated footnotes


This work was graciously contributed to the KSGenWeb Digital Library by John Leach (JLeach9273@aol.com) 29 June 1999.

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The following pages contain the day-by-day account of Earl Bohannon's participation in the Spanish American War of 1898.  It is written word for word, letter by letter, as near as I can translate it.  It is written from his personal diary and takes place from April 3, 1898 when he enlisted at Abilene to October 28, 1899 when he mustered out at San Francisco.  He was 19 years old when he enlisted.
-John Leach

Earl Bohannon

Born March 6 1879, Dillon Kansas
Married Eva M. Sherwood Feb. 6, 1907 KC Mo.
Attended State Normal College at Salina
Admitted to BAR at Muskogee in 1907
Practiced law 20 yrs at Muskogee before moving to Oswego, with Deming office in Oswego
Established practice in Parsons - associated as partner with Lacy Goodrich & Dwight Olds
Became partners with J Logan Shuss in 1940
Veteran of Spanish American War
Served in Philippines with 20th Kansas regiment
He was third district commander of the Spanish American war veterans
Member of 1st Methodist Church
President of Kiwanis Club
Member of Masonic Lodge & VFW
Membership in Labette County Bar Assn. and Oklahoma & Kansas Bar group
Buried Memorial Lawn cemetery, Parsons, Kansas
Died Nov. 23, 1952, Parsons, Kansas


FEB 4, 5, 6

Battle of Manila
FEB 10 Battle of Caloocan
FEB 11 to MAR 24 Defense of Caloocan
MAR 25 Battle of Tulijan River
MAR 26 Battle of Polo
Battle of Malinta
MAR 27 Battle of Marilao
MAR 28 Outpost Skirmishes
MAR 29 Battle of Bocave
MAR 30 to MAR 31 Advance on Malolas
APR 1 to APR 24 Defense of Malolas
APR 25 Battle of Bagbag River
APR 26 to APR 27 Battle of Rio Grande
MAY 4 Battle of Santo Tomas
MAY 6 to JUN 25 Defense of San Fernando
MAY 24 Battle of Bacolor
MAY 25 Engagement N of San Fernando
JUN 16 Battle General Attack on San Fernando
Various Skirmishes, Night Engagements and Scouting Expeditions


Earl Bohannon
Company L
20th Regiment
Kansas Vol. Inf.

Apr 30 Enlisted at Abilene
May 2 Arrived at Topeka
7 Ar. S (Army Service?) examination
10 Sworn in and signed U.S. muster rolls
13 Regimental muster
16 Regiment started for the coast.  I was taken with unease.
21 Leave Topeka
22 Arrived at Denver
24 arrived at San Fransico
June 17 Regt. paid
July 15 Company moved
Aug 4 Exhibition drill
5 moved to Presidio
Sept 12 paid second pay
Oct 27 Second and Third Batallions leave for Manila
Nov 1 paid fourth time
8 9:50 left Presidio and arrived at Pacific.  Mail.  Dock at 11:40 a.m.  Left for Manila 3:15
Nov 15 arrived at Honolulu.  Docked Nov 16
19 11:00 a.m. left Honolulu
30 sighted volcano
Dec 3 arrived at Manila
11 landed at Manila
Jan 7 moved quarters
26 moved quarters to Wq barracks
Feb 4 Filipinos attacked outpost and troops were sent to the front
K-1(footnote) 5 L Co went under fire for first time
6 dug intrenchment
7 Battle near Caloocan
8 .............
9 .............
K-2 10 Battle of Caloocan
11 entrenched again
12 still entrenched
18 "        "
19 "        "  but fighting in the night
20 still in trenches McArthur's first message from Caloocan.  Caloocan is taken and the 20th Kansas is a mile and a half ahead of the lines.  Will stop them if I can.
21 still in trenches
22 "     "     "
23 Artillery dual followed by an attack.  The attack was repulsed.  Firing at times all night.
24 sharp shooting
25 very quiet all day
26 quiet
27 Flag of truce lasting through the day
28 no firing wharever
Mar 1 still in trenches
2 "     "     "
3 "     "     "
K-3 4 Bennington fired on and (Malabon) burned.  Transport Senator arrived with C Co of the 22nd regulars.  USS Baltimore arrived with Filipino commission.  Dewey takes rank of Admiral and commander of the Navy
5 everything quiet.  (Ohio) arrived with rest of the 22nd
6 mail arrived and received my only birthday present.  A picture of the Wells & Ida & Levi
7 regiment paid
8 quiet
9 still quiet
K-4 10 USS Grant arrived with 4th Infantry & 1 Bat. 17th on board
11 still fighting
12 still fighting
13 Kline killed and heavy fighting on right
14 fighting
15 attacked at midnight
16 quiet
17 quiet
18 received mail
19 received mail
20 heavy fighting on right
21 quiet
22 quiet
K-5 24 leave trenches to take place in flying column
K-6 25 6 a.m. commenced firing on our line
9 a.m. forded river
26 began the advance Polo taken.  Advance.  Rest at Polo
27 still advancing
28 9:30 advancing
K-7 29 severe fighting
30 rested
31 advancing on Malolos.  10:30 a.m. Malolos taked
Apr 1 laying at Malolos
2 "         "     "
3 "         "     "
4 "         "     "
5 "         "     "
K-8 6 each co. issued 25 Krag Jorgenson's
7 still at Malolos
8 received the mail
9 attacked at night
10 firing on right
11 still at Malolos
12 "            "
13 company on out post
14 Sheridan arrived
14 Penn relieved
15 stood inspection
16 went to Malolos
17 nothing of importance happens
21 mail arrives
22 Lawton's division swings (in) the right
23 heavy firing on our right.  Mail arrives.  Go as engineer guard.  Start just after night, advance about 2 miles, lay 4 lengths of rails then fall back and join company before midnight 2:30
K-9 24 ate breakfast before daylight so as to be ready to advance on Calumpit.  Waited all day for orders but did not get them
25 8:00 a.m. still waiting for orders.  9:00 a.m. advanced on Calumpit.  Armored car in action
K-10 26 found the natives entrenched behind a large river.  The use cannons.  Made night attempt to cross Rio Grande R
27 Calumpit
27 forced (passage) over the river and took next town.  Slept all night in the rain
K-11 28 Aquinaldo asked for peace terms at Apalit
29 moved into Apalit and went into quarters
30 mustered
May 1 doing garrison duty again
K-12 2 Gen. Linared comes in to see Otis
3 make preparations for advance
K-13 4 San Thomas captured
5 (51st Ia) occupies San Fernando
6 We again go into quarters at San Fernando
8 out posts attacked.  4 reinforcement sent out
9 General (Im anager) of R.R. comes in from insurgents line
10 Col. Little takes command of the regiment
11 K & G Co's sent to guard San Thomas.  The Hancock arrives with the 21st Infantry.  Lieut. Simpson relieved from duty with L Co and Murphy sent to take his place
12 out post firing
14 received mail.  I was on out post.
16 Co L called out to strengthen out post
17 Co was on call but expecting an attack
18 received fresh beef for first time
K-14 19 Gen Furston takes command of our brigade
20 received mail and pay
22 was on pay masters escort
24 fought Battle of (Bacalor)  Ryan was wounded and died at midnight
25 natives attacked us and are defeated
26 outposts were attacked at 4:00 a.m. but held their position and natives retreated at daylight
28 received mail
June 1 two guns of Utah Art. came up from Manila
5 the 17th Infantry relieves our outposts
6 Rumold goes to the hospital
10 (S. at) relieved and goes to town L Co goes on scouting expedition
14 received mail of the 24th of April
16 General attack which was repulsed.  The enemy loss heavy
22 we are on outpost.  Our center and right strongly attacked.  Received mail
24 3rd Battallion starts for town at 8:00 a.m.  Our Battallion leaves S Co for Manila at 3:15 p.m. and arrives there at 6:30.  Go into (Cuartil) de Esponce
25 2nd Battallion comes in
July 3 went to Cavite
K-15 13 3rd Batallion went to Paranagne and the regiment was paid
16 went to Cavite and the Co H Art went on board the Sherman
26 the Sherman sailed
31 Grant sailed
Aug 10 3rd Battallion is relieved and comes in from Paranague.  The Sheridan leaves with S Dakota and Minmesota.  The (City) of (Par) arrives
Sept 2 the regiment goes on board the Yartar(?)
3 5:45 p.m. sailed from Manila
5 passed wrecked ship
6 arrived in Hong Kong in the morning
7 I went to the city.  The Fartar goes dry dock
8 Fartar goes out of dry dock
9 commences coaling and finishes on 12th
13 left the coal dock
14 5:45 p.m. started for Olkahoma
18 we enter the inland sea of Japan late in the afternoon.  Saw a Japanese train running along the shore
19 passed out of the inland sea and into the Pacific in the afternoon
20 entered (Judo) bay and anchored after dark.  The sea has been very rough and it has been raining all day
21 12:00 a.m. Jack Inginmorn died.  Very stormy all day.  The health inspector would not board our boat because of it
22 examined by health officers
22 I went on shore in the afternoon
25 10:00 a.m. sailed from (a) Oklahoma
Oct 2 10:30 a.m. crossed 180th Meridian
10 entered San Francisco bay shortly after 6:00
11 moved into dock at noon and came on shore at 2:00 - 3:00.  Our regiment took supper with the 1st (Mantance)
From Oct 11 until Oct 28 waiting for muster out.
Feb 25 L Co was relieved by (G) at Caloocan
Jan 8 I went to (Qarite)
Apr 27 at 11:00 a.m. started to cross Rio Grande.  I was on duty with the attacking party.
May 4 Col Franston was promoted to Brig Gen

Norc    4-12+7=28-10-10
Emma  4-11+7-28

Ida            8/13
Home        8-6    9-23
Aunt Ell     8-5

                                    No of Watch
no of works 4597113
AMW Co Riverside
wah hom  MASS
No of case  0709
No in back of case  110709  Silverode

Dry dock at Hong Kong is 426 ft long by 120 ft wide at ME to &
60 ft at the bottom.  The propeler is 20ft & 6" across & the blades are 4 ft wide

The Blockade runner & Perkins Tracy

The Baggage Coach Ahead
On the Lake of Ponche Train
Break the news to Mother
Poor little Joe
In the Shadow of the Pines

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