NEGenWeb Project
Spanish American War

Compiled by Fred Greguras

Camp Florida, Tampa, FL (See Camp Mitchell)

Fontana Barracks, San Francisco, CA

This camp was located in the Fontana warehouse building at Van Ness and North Point Streets, east of and adjacent to Fort Mason. This is just behind (south) of Aquatic Park. This was a 4 story brick warehouse which was used as a military warehouse up into the 1960s. It is now the site of high-rise apartment buildings named Fontana Apartments. The Fontana warehouse building can often be seen in older aerial photos of Fort Mason, at the east side of Fort Mason.
The troops assigned to Fontana Barracks were likely to be west coast garrison troops rather than a part of the Philippine expeditions. 
The May 18, 1898, San Francisco Chronicle, page 3, reported that signs of cracks in some wood pillars at “Fontana’s warehouse” had caused the 600 men of Batteries A, B, C and D of the 1st Artillery Battalion, California Volunteers, to leave their temporary barracks the previous night to camp outside. The California volunteers spent their first night in the warehouse on May 11. According to this article and another the next day, Fontana & Company had offered the warehouse as a temporary barracks at no cost. At the time of this incident, Fontana & Co. occupied the first floor of the building, the artillerymen were on the second floor and each of the third and fourth floors were the barracks for about 400 men of the 1st Wash. Vol. Inf. The 1st Wash. had arrived in San Francisco on May 13. The fourth floor was also a commissary warehouse. The Washington volunteers stayed in the warehouse even on the night the cracks appeared and continued living there following an inspection of the building the next day. The post was abandoned when the last battalion of the 1st Wash. left Fontana Barracks on July 2, 1898. The California artillerymen moved to the Presidio about May 17, 1898. The articles indicate the Fort Mason parade grounds were used for drill for the troops at Fontana Barracks.

Camp Fornance, Columbia, SC (See Camps Dewey and Ellerbe, SC)

Named for Capt. James Fornance, 13th U.S. Inf., mortally wounded on July 1, 1898 near Santiago, Cuba. He died of his wounds on July 3, 1898.
In early November, 1898, the third brigade of the second division of the Second Corps was camped at Columbia. Troops first arrived from Camp Meade on November 2, 1898. This winter camp lasted through March, 1899.
The camp was located in what was then north Columbia in an area later called the Camp Fornance section of the city. This area is generally the rectangle formed by U.S. Highway 176 and Richfield Drive and Union and Florence Streets. This area is identified on some maps as Camp Fornance at least as late as 1948.

Camp Fornance, Macon, GA (See Camp Haskell, Macon)

This camp was also named for Captain Fornance according to the November 24, 1898 Knoxville Sentinel.
This was the winter camp of the 2nd Ohio Vol. Inf. from about November 16, 1898 until February 10, 1899. In December, 1898 the Ohio soldiers called this “Camp Mud.”
The camp was located at Ocmulgee Park on the north side of Macon, north of Vineville.

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

Named after Major Albert G. Forse, 1st U.S. Cavalry, who was KIA at San Juan Hill, July 1, 1898. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
As of November 10, 1898 there were 3 regiments of cavalry regulars and 4 regiments of infantry regulars at the camp. By December 29, 1898, only 1 regiment of cavalry and 2 of infantry remained. Two of the infantry regiments had been moved to Cuba. The February 11, 1899 Army and Navy Journal reported the camp was “rapidly dwindling” because of the troop departures. The camp was abandoned March 7, 1899 according to the March 8, 1899 Huntsville Weekly Mercury.
A caption on a photo in the Huntsville-Madison County Public Library states: “Regular army soldiers camped on Monte Sano, 1898.” Monte Sano Mountain is on the east side of Huntsville.
According to Record, A Dream Come True, 1978, published by James Record, page 95: “The war ultimately brought about 14,000 soldiers to Huntsville, AL, mostly from the Tampa, Florida area. . . . The main body of soldiers arrived in August, 1898. During the stay of the soldiers, the ante bellum Robinson homestead on Meridian Pike, Oaklawn, along with the Sullivan Home on Greene and Randolph were turned into military facilities. Soldiers were stationed all over the city. The Fifth Ohio Cavalry was at Brahan Spring; the Sixty-Ninth New York nearby; the Tenth and Second Cavalry was at West Huntsville; and the Second Georgia was on the William Moore place. . . .
The Eighth Cavalry, Third Pennsylvania, Seventh Cavalry and Sixteenth Infantry were located on the Chapman Farm, while the Fifth Maryland Engineers and the First Florida were on the Steele place, where main headquarters were located, and the Second Brigade Hospital was located in Moore’s Grove. Others were in the College Grove near Randolph Street, and Calhoun Grove, as well as McCalley Grove. The Medical Supply House headquarters was on Holmes Street. Generals S. Coppinger and Joe Wheeler were successive commanders of the post, Camp Wheeler. When Wheeler assumed command, he changed the name to Camp Albert G. Forse.” The name change occurred by October 31, 1898.
The Brahan Spring camp was primarily a cavalry camp. Brahan Spring Park is currently located in south Huntsville.
General Coppinger’s headquarters was at the Steele home in east Huntsville. This house is located at 808 Maysville Road and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Robinson home mentioned above is also on the National Register and is located at 2709 Meridian.
Demobilization camp for 69th N.Y. Vol. Inf. Described in Empire State pages 144-151. The 69th’s camp was “about a mile west of the town in a beautiful farming valley.”

Camp at Fort Macon, NC (See Camps Dan Russell and Bryan Grimes)

This was the assembly and training camp for the 3rd N.C. Vol. Inf., an all-Black regiment which was commanded by Black officers, including its commanding officer, James H. Young of Raleigh.
The camp was outside the fort as the fort had been temporarily occupied by regular artillery troops.
The camp was occupied from late May, 1898 until the middle of September, 1898 when the regiment was transferred to Camp Poland in Knoxville.
The information above was derived primarily from Richard S. Barry, The History of Fort Macon, unpublished Masters Thesis, Duke University, 1950.

Camp Foster, New Orleans, LA (See Camp H.C. Corbin, New Orleans)

Named for the wartime governor, Murphy J. Foster, according to Annual Report of the Adjutant General of Louisiana for 1898, 1899.
Muster in location for 1st and 2nd Louisiana Vol. Inf. 
Established at the fairgrounds about May 1, 1898 according to the Annual Report. The lst Louisiana was housed in the large brick exposition building and the 2nd Louisiana was in tents in the center of the race track. The 1st Louisiana left New Orleans about June 1 and the 2nd about May 30. Both regiments went to Camp Coppinger in Mobile. There were also regular army regiments camped at the fairgrounds beginning about April 19, 1898. Source (11) indicates the 18th and 23rd U.S. Inf. and 5th U.S. Cav. were at the fairgrounds at the same time as the state volunteers. The regulars camped in tents in the center of the race track and left New Orleans about May 24, 1898.
A photo in Harpers Weekly, May 7, 1898, page 442, bottom left, shows the camp at the New Orleans fairgrounds. There is a photo of Camp Foster at page 228 of Photographic History of the Spanish-American War, Pearson Publishing Company, 1898 (CD version).
An 1898 map of New Orleans indicates the fairgrounds were in the center of the city just to the east of City Park. A current map places the fairgrounds in the same location.

Camp Frank, Ardmore, Indian Territory (OK)

According to source (8), this was a temporary post established in September, 1898 by 2nd Lieutenant T.E. Morrill, 1st Artillery, with Battery G, from Fort Point at Galveston, Texas. Camp Frank was located one mile southeast of Ardmore in Carter County.

Camp Fuller, Columbia, SC (See Camp Dewey, Columbia, SC)

The camp was named after Captain Ezra B. Fuller, the “chief muster officer” who mustered out the regiment. The camp was referred to as Camp Geiger and Camp Dewey in articles in the Columbia State prior to being named Camp Fuller on October 30, 1898.
This was the muster out camp of the 1st S.C. Vol. Inf. from September 24 until November 12, 1898.
The camp was located near Geiger’s Spring which was where Camp Dewey had been located. Geiger’s Spring was likely where Earlewood Park is located along north Main Street.

Camp Geiger, Columbia, SC (See Camp Fuller)

J.B. Gibbs General Hospital, Camp Hamilton, Lexington, KY

Dr. John Blair Gibbs was an acting assistant naval surgeon serving with the 1st Battalion, U.S. Marines. He was killed in a night attack on the Marines’ Camp McCalla at Guantanamo, Cuba early in the morning of June 12, 1898. He was practicing in New York and volunteered for active service in the war. He was the only medical officer killed in the war. According to the June 13, 1898 San Francisco Examiner, his father was “Major Gibbs of the regular army, who fell in the Custer massacre.”
This hospital was near Camp Hamilton. Camp Hamilton is noted in the Lexington newspapers as having the second largest army hospital among the camps at the time of its establishment on August 23, 1898. This hospital was about one mile from camp according to Webber, Twelve Months with the Eighth Massachusetts Infantry in the Service of the U.S., Newcomb & Gauss Printers, 1908, page 100.

Camp Gilman, Americus, GA

The Americus Weekly Times-Recorder of November 25, 1898 reported that the camp had been named Camp Gilman in honor of Major Gilman. This was Brevet Major Benjamin Gilman of the 13th Inf. who was brevetted for his meritorious service in the presence of the enemy at Santiago on July 2, 1898. Gilman died of dysentery and malarial fever on July 26, 1898. He is buried at West Point. According to Webber, Twelve Months with the Eighth Massachusetts in the Service of the U.S., Newcomb & Gauss Printers, 1908, 117-118, this camp was first named Camp Forse but was changed because another camp had been named Camp Forse (at Huntsville, AL).
The second brigade of the second division of the First Corps was camped at Americus, Georgia during November-December, 1898, according to source (8). It was intended to be a three-regiment camp but no more than two regiments of state volunteers ever occupied it.
The camp was located about 2 miles south from the center of Americus, in the vicinity of the country club located at 1800 South Lee Road.
According to the Americus Weekly Times-Recorder of November 4, 1898, the “dwelling houses upon the site selected will be used principally as offices, . . . “A detachment of the 8th Mass Vol. Inf. arrived around November 3 to prepare the site, identified as “Rylander’s farm.” The 12th N.Y. arrived in mid-November. The November 25 paper reported that officers’ mess halls, bathhouses, stables and other buildings had been constructed.
The 12th N.Y. left in late December 1898 and the 8th Mass. left in early January, 1899.

Camp Godwin, Jefferson Barracks, St. Louis, MO (See Camp Stephens)

Camp Gordon, St. Simons Island, GA

Named for the Confederate General John B. Gordon.
This camp was first established by a company of the 3rd Texas Vol. Inf. on July 30, 1898. The headquarters and four companies of the 2nd N.C. Vol. Inf. arrived the next day. Two additional companies of the 2nd N.C. later joined the camp. The 2nd N.C. had returned to Raleigh by September 14, 1898. The purpose of the camp was coast defense. 
The camp was near the lighthouse at the southern tip of the island.

Camp Graham, Tybee Island, GA

Named for Brig. General William Montrose Graham (Maj. Gen. U.S.V.), commander of Atlantic Coast defenses, according to Adams, A History of Fort Screven, Georgia, JMA2 Publications, 1996, pages 18-19. Graham was the initial commanding officer of the Second Corps.
See Gaines, Fort Screven: The Modern System of Defense at Savannah, 1886-1946; Coast Defense Study Group Journal, Vol. 3, No. 3, page 30. Capt. John M.L. Davis and Battery F of the 1st U.S. Artillery were sent to Tybee Island where Capt. Davis established Camp Graham on March 18, 1898. On May 5, 1899, the military reservation on Tybee Island was renamed Fort Screven.

Graham Barracks, Kansas City, MO (See Camp Jackson, MO)

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

Named after General U.S. Grant, father of Brig General F.D. Grant, initial commanding officer of the third brigade of third division of the First Corps, according to source (10), the regimental history of the 160th Ind. Vol. Inf., pages 24-26. The 160th Ind. was in Newport News from July 30 to August 31, 1898 when it departed for Lexington, Kentucky. The unit was to be part of the Puerto Rico campaign but was held in Newport News because the peace protocol had been signed.
This was the camp of third brigade of the third division of the First Corps. The camp was located “above” the shipyard in the area of 45th street to beyond 50th street, the James River to the west and the C&O railroad tracks to the east.
According to source (10), established July 30, 1898 “on the banks of the James River” and abandoned August 21, 1898.
The 1st Ky. Vol. Inf., a regiment in the third brigade, moved to a camp on the casino grounds located northwest of 25th and West Street at the end of the first week in August. This is the area where Christopher Newport Park is located. A photograph shows the 5th Ill. camp was located just south of the Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company on the James River at about 35th Street at one time. This may have been the regiment’s camp after its August 11 disembarkation from the transport ship on which it was to sail to Puerto Rico. The regiment was ordered to disembark because it was no longer needed in the campaign.

Camp Bryan Grimes, Raleigh, NC (See Camp Dan Russell and Camp at Fort Macon)

Bryan Grimes was a Confederate major general from North Carolina during the Civil War.
The camp was established about April 23, 1898 as the muster in location for the 1st N.C. Vol. Inf. The camp was east of the fairgrounds (where Camp Dan Russell was located) and was on both sides of Hillsborough Street as far south as the railroad tracks and what is now Pullen Park. There is a state historical marker for the camp on Hillsborough Street.
The camp is described in Steelman, North Carolina’s Role in the Spanish-American War, North Carolina Division of Archives and History, 1975, pages 3-8.
A photograph identified as “1st Reg. N.C. Volunteers U.S.A. Camp Grimes, May, 1898” shows an outdoor scene with several rows of small tents in a grove of trees. No buildings can be seen.

Camp Gulstan, Honolulu, HI (See Camp McKinley, Honolulu, HI)

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

Named after Brigadier General Peter C. Hains, in command of the second brigade of the first division of the 1st Corps. The correct spelling is Hains. General Hains is buried at Arlington.
References to Camp Haines are in the July 24 and 29, 1898 Richmond Dispatch and July 29, 1898 Atlanta Constitution. This was the camp of Hains’ second brigade in its brief stay at Newport News and was north of the shipworks. Camp Haines and Camp Brooke are likely the same camp, named differently by two units. The July 29, 1898 Richmond Dispatch reports that Grant’s third brigade camped on the same site as Camp Haines.
The July 28, 1898 Marion (Ohio) Daily Star reported the 4th Ohio had left Camp Haines and was on board ships bound for Puerto Rico. The article indicates the 3rd Illinois, 4th Pennsylvania, Troops A and C of the New York cavalry and four artillery batteries also left the camp to embark. The 4th Penn and Troop C unit histories refer to the camp as Camp Brooke.


©2005 Fred Greguras