William H. (William Henry) Chaffee.

The Chaffee genealogy, embracing the Chafe, Chafy, Chafie, Chafey, Chafee, Chaphe, Chaffie, Chaffey, Chaffe, Chaffee descendants of Thomas Chaffe, of Hingham, Hull, Rehoboth and Swansea, Massachusets; also certain lineages from families in the United States, Canada and England, not descended from Th online

. (page 58 of 91)
Online LibraryWilliam H. (William Henry) ChaffeeThe Chaffee genealogy, embracing the Chafe, Chafy, Chafie, Chafey, Chafee, Chaphe, Chaffie, Chaffey, Chaffe, Chaffee descendants of Thomas Chaffe, of Hingham, Hull, Rehoboth and Swansea, Massachusets; also certain lineages from families in the United States, Canada and England, not descended from Th → online text (page 58 of 91)
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hundred men were aboard the transport; the 6th Cavalry, with which General
Chaffee served from 1S61 to 1888, a battalion of marines and a detachment of
recruits. On entering the port of Nagasaki, July 21st, two transports loaded with
troops en route from Manila to China were met steaming slowly out of the harbor.
The men cheered their comrades on the Grant, and gave news of the battle of
Tien-Tsin, China, July 13th. Reporting to the War Department his arrival at
Nagasaki, General Chaffee received instructions to proceed with dispatch to
Toku Bay, disembark the troops aboard the Grant, assume command of all United
States troops in China, and co-operate with commanders of troops of other na-
tions for relief of the besieged Legations in Peking. He arrived in Tien-Tsin
July 31st and immediately conferred with Lieutenant-General Yamagochi, com-
manding a division of twelve thousand Japanese troops, with Lieutenant-Gen-
eral Gazlee commanding three thousand British troops, with Lieutenant-Gen-
eral Linevitch commanding four thousand Russian troops, with General Frey,
commanding French troops, and with Field-Marshal Von W^aldersee, command-
ing the German forces. The French and German forces combined numbered less
than one thousand. It was agreed that the advances of the co-operating forces
should begin August 4th. The Chinese were defeated at Pitsang August 5th, at
Yangtsun August 6th, at Yung Chow August 12th, and Peking was entered and


the Legations relieved August 14th. The United States troops engaged in the
operations were the 9th and 14th Lifantry, 6th Cavalry, Reilly's Battery of Light
Artillery, and two battalions of marines, twenty-five hundred men in all. Al-
though the allied troops met severe trials and losses. General Chaffee and his
command maintained the reputation of American arms. During their occupancy
oT Peking the allied troops, with the sole exception of the American forces, looted
the city and showed great cruelty to the conquered Chinese. A New York paper
in commenting on this fact editorially, speaks of General ChafTee as "the General
who kept his troops so well in hand in China, in spite of the disgraceful examples
of cruelty and savagery all around them," and continues:

"In the whole history of the United States army there is no more glorious
chapter than the performance of its expeditionary force which took part in the
rescue of the legations. Every Chinese statesman knows that its military effi-
ciency was not more remarkable than its complete abstinence from the outrages
by which other of the allied forces were disgracing their respective countries in
particular, and the names of Christianity and civilization in general. The Chinese
Government has acknowledged our moderation. It was General Chaffee him-
self, as the commander of one of the corps which effected the relief of the legations,
who expostulated with the German commander so warmly upon the excesses of
looting to which some of the German troops had delivered themselves, that Count
Von Waldersee returned the remonstrance 'on account of its tone.' "

In praise of General Chaffee's work in China the New York Press of Febru-
ary 10, 1901, said:

"At El Caney Chaffee had the eyes of America upon him. In China the eyes
of Europe were turned toward this American to see what he would do. The farm
boy of forty years ago was brought into contact with some of the finest soldiers
with the allied Powers. There he proved that worth and fame
" '. . . from no condition rise;
" 'Act well your part, there all the honor lies.'

"Whether in diplomatic conference or on the field of battle Chaffee showed
the stuff Americans are made of. He fell not before those men among whom a
diplomatic blunder is a crime, and on the field he took his staff where foreign officers
and newspaper correspondents alike feared to follow. Chaffee is cast for the com-
mand of the Philippines, and if he lives long enough he will have the honor, barren
though it may be, of ' commanding ' the United States army. But the beauty of
it all is that it isn't 'Chaffee luck,' but plain American ability that put him where
he is."

February 9, 1901, General Chaffee was raised to the rank of Major-General
of the regular army, and the promotion was celebrated by his friends in Peking,
as the following dispatch relates :

"Peking, Feb. 14. The past week in Peking has practically been devoted
socially to Gen. Chaffee, in honor of his promotion to the rank of IMajor-General
in the regular Army. The officers of the American camp at the Temple of Agri-
culture gave a reception in his honor at the club, at which nearly all the American
officers and civilians in Peking were present to congratulate him. United States
Minister and Mrs. Conger gave a dinner on February 9 in Gen. Chaffee's honor,
after which there was a smoker at the American Club. Owing to the dinner, it
was late before Gen. Chaffee put in his appearance — shortly after 11 o'clock. As
soon as it was known that he was coming through the gates the preparations were
made to receive him in style and an international guard of honor was formed, the
commanding officer of which was the British General, Richardson, the band
playing 'Hail to the Chief and afterward 'He's a Jolly Good Fellow.' Gen. Rich-
ardson led the cheering which followed the music and which was long and pro-
nounced. Fully four-fifths of the British officers from the Temple of Heaven were
present, with quite a number of the German officers, including members of the


Field Marshal's staff, and a scattering of French and Japanese. The French
Minister and Mme. Pichon gave a luncheon party in Gen. Chaffee's honor on
Feb. 10, and several other dinners and receptions have been arranged. The en-
listed men of the command are unfeignedly delighted over the promotion, for to
them Gen. Chaffee is the exemplification of all that a good soldier should be. An-
other reason is that the General was once an enlisted man himself. It is doubtful
if there is any man in Peking to-day who is so much liked and respected by the
people of all nations as is Gen. Chaffee."

General Chaffee remained in Peking until May, 1901, when he was appointed
Military Governor of the unpacified portion of the Philippines, relieving Major-
General McArthur, July 4, 1901. Thus he came for the first time into inti-
mate relations with Governor Taft, the civil head of affairs in the archipelago,
the two men exercising a joint rule over the islands. The relations between
them were exceedingly harmonious and have always remained so. General
Chaffee's work in the Philippines had for its most important feature the sup-
pression of the insurrection in the island of Samar, where he succeeded in
capturing the famous guerilla Chieftain Lukban, thus putting an end to the war
in that part of the archipelago. He also captured Malvar, another bandit of
much celebrity, in Luzon, and by that means pacified an entire province. In
fact it may be said that these two exploits put an end to the rebellion in the Philip-
pines. He held command in Manila until September 30, 1902, being then trans-
ferred to command the Department of the East, with headquarters at Governor's
Island, New York Harbor. In October, 1903, he was detailed as member of the
General Staff of the army and entered upon duty at the War Department as
Assistant to the Chief-of-Staff, Lieutenant-General Young. Upon the latter's
retirement from active service, January 9, 1904, General Chaffee succeeded him
as Lieutenant-General and Chief-of-Staff, the highest position in the American
army. The day after this promotion, the New York Herald contained the
following :

"Adna R. Chaffee, who yesterday succeeded General Young as head of the
United States Army, is just a plain fighting man. No courtier soldier he, but a
grim warrior who has seen many a stricken field and the bulk of whose life has
been spent in hard service on the frontier chasing bad Indians and leading the
advance guard in the march of civilization across this continent.

"There was no influence at Washington to help him scale the ladder of pro-
motion. Such scant rewards as he enjoyed up to six years ago were hard earned
and well won. At the time of the outbreak of the war with Spain he was only a
lieutenant colonel, and the highest flight of his ambition was a colonelcy in the
cavalry. If in the winter of 1897-98 anybody had told him that he would become
a lieutenant general and occupy the place then held by General Nelson A. Miles,
he would have laughed at the absurdity of the suggestion.

"Chaffee's career might be said to represent the apotheosis of the enlisted man.
In 1861, at the beginning of the civil war, he was a private in Company K of the
6th Cavalry, and it was not until nearly two years had passed that he obtained
his first commission, as second lieutenant in the same regiment. At the end of
that memorable conflict he was only a first lieutenant and he did not become a
major until July, 1888. It was the Spanish war that gave him his great oppor-
tunity, enabling him to rise in less than six years to the very tip top of the military
tree. . . . Chaffee is a highly educated man, but most of his schooling he
obtained for himself after he had grown to manhood. Born in Ohio he had only
a common school training, which was discontinued when he was eighteen years of
age, but after the close of the civil war he studied hard, even taking a course in
law. In the army he has always been respected for his brains as well as for his
prowess as a fighter. He furnished the military ' problems ' for some of the recent


luanoeuvers, and it is an interesting fact that the map used by General Shafter
in Cuba to guide his operations there — the only map that could be got — was
drawn by Chaffee from a reconnoissance made by himself through the enemy's
country, much of it by travelling on his hands and knees. . . . There was
an occasion, twenty-one years ago, when he was one of a command under Gen-
eral Crook, out in Arizona, when he was reported killed, together with all the rest
of the party.

"Having survived so much hardship and so many perils, General Chaffee finds
himself to-day at the summit of military ambition. He lives in Washington with
his charming wife in a luxurious apartment on Connecticut Avenue. He has a
son at West Point, the elder of his two daughters is married to an army officer,
Captain George F. Hamilton, and his little grandson, who is his special pride, is
Adna, 3d.

"One of the most popular men in the army, Adna R. Chaffee is still the unpre-
tending soldier. A hard worker, he loves his home and a good cigar. Those are
his pleasures in life."

"General Chaffee is of the school of Grant and Lawton — quiet, unobtrusive,
modest, but full of fight. He has never advertised himself or solicited others to
do it for him. Although appointed from the ranks to a commission, no West
Pointer could be more punctilious in all that pertains to a soldier and officer or
more devoted to the traditions of the regular army than is General Chaffee.

"General Chaffee is loved by his troops and respected by every officer with
whom he is associated or who has ever heard of him. ... In all his long
service not a breath of criticism has ever touched him, but the official records are
replete with mention of his gallant work and bear testimony to his scrupulous
honesty and fine executive ability.

"If his advancement, brevets and promotions had depended upon his urging
his own merits, General Chaffee would still be a lieutenant in the Sixth Cavalry.
That sense of honor so strong in the old line officer that preferment must come
without seeking is possessed to its fullest extent by General Chaffee. He is as
innocent as a child of anything approaching log-rolling or "poHtical pull." He
despises anything of the sort and would not lift his little finger to secure the in-
fluence of a man in power. These qualifications, united with his record as a fighter,
organizer and executive pointed to him as the fittest officer in the service for the
China command.

" General Chaffee's record is part of the history and romance of the great Indian
wars west of the Mississippi. He began his service there very shortly after the
Civil War in frontier posts and trailing the Indians over the great West and South-
west until the war with Spain opened and he went to make a new record in Cuba.
General Chaffee does not like to be hampered in his operations and in his Indian
fights he showed rare self-reliance and a disposition to cut loose from higher au-
thorities when those authorities were not as well posted on the situation as he.
Here is an anecdote which illustrates this characteristic:

"When captain in the Sixth Cavalry he was ordered to look after some unruly
Indians in Arizona. Just before starting one evening he dropped into the signal
office and said to the operator in charge : ' Are there any orders for me from Wash-

" 'No, sir,' said the operator.

" 'Well,' responded Captain Chaffee, 'I am going out to look for some Indians.
I wouldn't be surprised if your telegraph lines were cut. You will probably hear
of some dead Indians, but will hardly get anything on the wires from Washington.'

"Captain Chaffee and his band started out, and sure enough, the telegraph lines
were cut, and sure enough there were several dead Indians next morning. There
was no means by which Washington could telegraph the captain not to 'shoot

"According to General Lawton, the credit of the battle of El Caney and most
of the maneuvers of the troops before Santiago belongs to General Chaffee. He
was the most active of any of the officers, his wiry frame giving him strength and


endurance. Beside, he had the faculty of at once catching the saHent features of
the surrounding country and his reconnoisances were accurate and of the greatest
value. . . .

"General Chaffee is intensely loyal to his friends and to his superior officers.
While attending a banquet in St. Louis a short time after the Cuban campaign
something was said derogatory of General Shafter. General Chaffee at once arose
and resented the reflection. He said that General Shafter had been his com-
mander in Cuba and had there carried out the most wonderful and effective cam-
paign. He launched into a panegyric of his superior officer that aroused the
wildest enthusiasm and had everybody at the banquet cheering for General Shaf-
ter." [Philadelphia Press.]

During the summer of 1905, General Chaffee was for a time Acting Secretary
of War, in the absence of Secretary Taft, and Acting Secretary Oliver. Later
in the summer, accompanied by his wife and daughter, he went to France, where
at the invitation of President Loubet of that country he witnessed the army


"President of France Welcomes American on Field of Sham Battle

"Chateau Brienne, Department of the Aube, France, Sept. 11. — President
Loubet arrived on the field of the army manoeuvres to-day, accompanied by War
Minister Berteaux and General Brugere. The President went from point to point
in the vast theatre of operations. At Ville Hardouin he met Lieutenant General
Adna R. Chaffee, Brigadier General J. Franklin Bell, Brigadier General William
Crozier and their staffs. The Americans were presented to M. Loubet, and the
latter, addressing General Chaffee, said France was glad to receive the American
military mission and thus acknowledge America's reception of the French military
mission, which attended the Rochambeau exercises. General Chaffee in reply
paid a tribute to the splendid organization and equipment of the French army.
The manoeuvres ended with a brillant banquet, at which President Loubet pre-
sided. M. Casimir-Perier, former President of the Republic, sat at the President's
right and Lieutenant General Chaffee at his left.

"President Loubet, in proposing a toast to the heads of the states represented
at the banquet, assured the foreign officers that their presence was heartily wel-
comed by the army and people of France.

"^Minister Berteaux, in behalf of the French army, thanked the representatives
of the foreign Powers for their attendance at the manoeuvres, making special
reference to the presence of the American mission.

" Lieutenant General Chaffee, in behalf of the President of the United States and
the American Army, gave expression to their hearty recognition of the splendid
reception which had been accorded the American mission by President Loubet
and the French army." [New York Press.]

February 1, 1906, he retired from the service of the country he had served
so long and faithfully. Since then he has made his home in Los Angeles, Cal.


"In the forty-fifth year of his service as an American soldier, Adna Romanza
Chaffee, who has filled and honored every grade in the regular army, from pri-
vate soldier to lieutenant-general, except that of brigadier-general, retires to-day
from the chief command of the military forces of the United States, and from the

"There have been few officers of high rank with whom the country has parted
with more regret than it will part with Gen. Chaffee. He is one of the most sol-
dierly soldiers who ever drew a saber in the country's service. An ideal cavalry-
man, an ideal regular, his record for brilliant bravery is rivaled only by his record
for hard, patient, unselfish work.

"He is, we believe, the only chief commander of the United States army who


rose from the ranks of the regular army. An Ohio country boy of nineteen, he
enUsted in the Sixth Cavalry in 1S61. He had been in the service less than two
years when the material of a fine officer was recognized in him, and he was made a
lieutenant. Twice during the civil war he was brevetted for gallantry in action,
and twice afterward in Indian wars.

"But for twenty-one years this brilliant soldier occupied the grade of captain
of cavalry. The best of his life, from his twentj'-fifth to his forty-sixth year, was
spent in patient service in mere company command. These long years were the
regular thing then. They won the captains the honorable title of 'the old man,'
by which the soldiers knew them.

" Days of more rapid advancement came for Capt. Chaffee, however. The Span-
ish and Philippine wars brought him out as a commander, and the Pekin campaign
proved that a very good diplomatist, as well as general, may be developed from a
'high private in the rear rank.'

"Through all this honorable career. Gen. Chaffee has been just a plain Ameri-
can, democratic, quite without fuss or glitter, and a student as well as a fighter.
The example of his record is worth a dozen military academies.

"For West Point exists not to make something else, or something more orna-
mental, than he, but to make men like him. As for Chaffee, he never needed West
Point, yet never scorned or slighted it." [New York Evening Mail.]

Children, by first wife, born in Fort Grifhn, Tex. :

4778 i A son,9 born in September, 1868; died about February, 1869, aged

five months; buried in Austin.

4779 ii A son, born in August, 1869; died in Fort Griffin, August, 1869, aged

one day.
Children, by second wife :
+ 4780 iii Kate Grace Chaffee, born February 4, 1876; married Captain George
F. Hamilton.

4781 iv Mabel, born in Xew York City, September 4, 1877; died there March 4,

1877; buried in Woodlawn Cemetery.

4782 v Adna Romanza Chaffee, Jr., born in Junction City, September 23,

1884; he was educated in the public schools until September,
1898, when he was placed in St. Luke's School for Boys, Wa}Tie,
Pa., remaining there nearly four years; in the spring of 1901 he
visited his father in command of the United States troops in
Peking, China, and accompanied him to Manila, returning to
the United States with his sister Helen in August of that year.
He entered the L^nited States Military Academy, West Point,
N. Y., June 15, 1902, graduating June 12, 1906, ranking thirty-
one in a class of seventy-two ; he was assigned Second Lieutenant,
15th Cavalry, and on expiration of graduating leave joined his
regiment at Fort Ethan Allen, Yt., very soon thereafter embark-
ing with his regiment for service in Cuba.

4783 vi Helen Valentine Chaffee, born in Junction City, February 14, 1888;

she was a student in Mrs. Hazen's school for Girls, Pelham Manor,
N. Y., for five years and for one year in j\Iiss Somers' School for
Young Ladies, Washington; in June, 1901, she accompanied her
mother to Manila, returning with her brother to the United States
in August of the same year; visited her parents in INIanila in
July, 1902, returning to Xew York via the Suez Canal in Octo-
ber of that year; during the fall of 1905 accompanied her parents
to France.

2662 Gurdon Amos » Chaffee (Amos,^ Amos,^ William,^ Jonathan,* Jona-
than,3 Nathaniel, 2 Thomas i) was born in Ashford, Conn., May 10, 1837, and
died in Union, Conn., May 7, 1889. He married (1) Sarah S. F. Lyon of Union,
Conn., (2) Caroline F. Capwell, who survived him. Mr. Chaffee enlisted for nine
months in Company G, 9th Connecticut Volunteers. He also enlisted as a Private


in Company F, 22d Connecticut Infantry, in Eastford, September 10, 1862. He
was mustered in September 20, 1862, and mustered out July 7, 1863. While with
the army in Virginia he was wounded in the hand and contracted rheumatism.
He received a pension of $50 a month for several years preceding his death. About
1863 he settled in Union, where he spent the rest of his hfe.

Children, by first wife:
+ 4784 i Amos F.9 Chaffee, born in 1864; married Phoebe Capwell.

4785 ii Elmer Elsworth Chaffee, born in 1866.

4786 iii A son, died about 1867 in infancy.

2663 Martha Susan » Chaffee (Amos,^ Amos,^ William, ^ Jonathan,* Jona-
than, 3 Nathaniel,^ Thomas i) was born in Ashford, Conn., June 22, 1839, and died
in Preston, Conn., May 30, 1879. She married S. H. Preston of Eastford, Conn.

Children :

4787 i Florence Emily ^ Preston, born in 1861; married in December, 1888,

John Rathbone of Norwich, Conn. ; residence, 1883, Boston, Mass.
+ 4788 ii Mattie S. Preston, born in 1865; married E. G. Standish.

2664 Annie Emily s Chaffee (Amos,^ Amos,^ William,^ Jonathan,* Jonathan, 3
Nathaniel, 2 Thomas i) was born in Ashford, Conn., June 11, 1840, and married
Gordon S. Haven of Illinois, a jeweler. In 1883 they lived in Greenville, lU.,
and in 1889 in Altamont, 111.

Children :

4789 i Grant C.a Haven, born about 1866.

4790 ii Curtis Chaffee Haven, born about 1874.

4791 iii Artie C. Haven (a daughter), born about 1877.

2666 Harriet Amanda « Chaffee (Amos,^ Amos,^ William,^ Jonathan,* Jona-
than, 3 Nathaniel, 2 Thomas i) was born in Ashford, Conn., October 26, 1843, and
married George A. Dennis, a stonecutter. In 1883 they lived in Waterbury,
Conn., and in 1889 in Bridgeport, Conn.

Children :

4792 i Ernest Milton » Dennis, born about 1868.

4793 ii Mary C. Dennis, born about 1872.

2667 Esther Lurancie » Chaffee (Amos,^ Amos,^ William, s Jonathan,* Jona-
than, 3 Nathaniel, 2 Thomas i) was born in Ashford, Conn., March 24, 1847, and
married John A. Young, a farmer. In 1883 they lived in Eastford on the home-
stead which had at that time been occupied by the Chaffee family for ninety

Children :

4794 i Mary Lillie » Yovmg, bom in 1865; married James Mimson of Water-

bury, Conn.

4795 ii John Young, born in 1875.

2670 John Milton s Chaffee (Amos,^ Amos,6 William,^ Jonathan,* Jonathan, 3
Nathaniel, 2 Thomas i) was born in Eastford, Conn., March 13, 1851, and married
in Killingly, Conn., May 1, 1873, Mary Evangelme, daughter of Israel Plummer
of that place. In 1883 they lived in Putnam, Conn., and in 1889 in Norwich,
Conn., where he kept a grocery store. He has also been a salesman.

Children :

4796 i Milton LeRoy » Chaffee, born in Preston, Conn., May 1, 1874.

4797 ii Mary Evangeline Chaffee, born in Norwich, July 10, 1877.


4798 iii Ethel Maxwell Chaffee, born m Norwich, June 21, 1879.

4799 iv Joseph Zane Chaffee, born in Putnam, April 18, 1881 ; died June 25,


4800 V Clarence Walter Chaffee, born in Putnam, May 22, 1882 ; died March 18,


4801 vi Ella P. Chaffee, died in infancy.

4802 vii Eloise F. Chaffee, born in 1886.

4803 viii Clara W. Chaffee, born in 1888.

2671 Ellen Adelia « Chaffee (Amos,^ Amos,*" William, ^ Jonathan, * Jonathan, 3
Nathaniel, 2 Thomas i) was born in Eastford, Conn., March 26, 1854, and mar-
ried Gilbert S. Shippee of Rhode Island. In 1883 they lived in Roxbury Station,

Online LibraryWilliam H. (William Henry) ChaffeeThe Chaffee genealogy, embracing the Chafe, Chafy, Chafie, Chafey, Chafee, Chaphe, Chaffie, Chaffey, Chaffe, Chaffee descendants of Thomas Chaffe, of Hingham, Hull, Rehoboth and Swansea, Massachusets; also certain lineages from families in the United States, Canada and England, not descended from Th → online text (page 58 of 91)