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Bill Thayer

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The text that follows is reproduced from (the report of the) Sixty-sixth Annual Reunion of the Association of the Graduates of the United States Military Academy, June 11, 1935.

[image ALT: A three-quarter-length photograph of a young man in a plain high-collared military tunic; he has a serious and somewhat abstracted expression. He is West Point graduate Lewis Douglass Greene, the subject of this webpage.]

 p100  Lewis Douglass Greene
No. 2729 Class of 1878
Died February 23, 1935, at Washington, D. C.,
aged 79 years.

Lewis Douglass Greene was born at Medina, Orleans County, New York, on May 23, 1856, the son of Joseph Norton and Ann Douglass Greene. He received his early education in the schools of Orleans and Cortland Counties, New York and was appointed to the Military Academy, from the latter in 1874. He graduated number 13 in the Class of 1878 and was commissioned 2nd Lieutenant and assigned to the 7th Infantry on June 14, 1878.

He joined his regiment at Fort Snelling, Minnesota, the following October and served with it during all of his active service. In 1879‑80 he was with his regiment during the Campaign against the Ute Indians in Northern Colorado and in the latter year was at Fort Buford, North Dakota, when Sitting Bull and other chiefs, leaders in the Custer fight in 1876, returned to the United States from Canada and surrendered. During the years 1882‑85 he served with the regiment at Forts Lincoln, Dakota and Fred Steele, Wyoming, and in the latter year when a massacre of Chinese took place at Rock Springs, Wyoming, he  p101 was sent with his company to prevent a repetition of the disturbances and remained there until June of 1887.

Lieutenant Greene was appointed Aide-de‑Camp to Major General Indicates a West Point graduate and gives his Class.George Crook then commanding the Department of the Lakes with headquarters at Chicago. He served in this capacity until he was relieved at his own request in June 1889. He received his promotion to the grade of First Lieutenant in December, 1888. On his return to his regiment he was appointed Regimental Quartermaster and served in that capacity, both at Fort Laramie, Wyoming and Fort Logan, Colorado, until July, 1893. During this time the regiment took part in the campaign against the Sioux in South Dakota during the winter of 1889‑90.

In 1894 he was detailed as Quartermaster and Commissary of the Army and Navy General Hospital, Hot Springs, Arkansas and served on this duty until he was retired for physical disability on April 26, 1898, as a Captain of Infantry. The war with Spain being in progress and not being able to accompany his regiment due to his retirement, he obtained a position as a special correspondent of the Boston Herald and accompanied General Brooke's command to Porto Rico. On returning to the United States he accepted the position as Superintendent of Marine Transportation under the Depot Quartermaster at Seattle, Washington, and as such had charge of the shipment of troops and supplies to the Philippines and China during the Philippine Insurrection and the Boxer Rebellion. In 1900 he became connected with the shipping firm of Frank Waterhouse, Inc., of Seattle and remained with them until he moved to Chicago, Illinois in 1902.

For several years he engaged in private business in Chicago and while there was commissioned a Lieutenant Colonel, Adjutant General's Department, Illinois National Guard. In 1908 he was detailed by the War Department on active duty as Instructor of the Illinois National Guard. While serving in that capacity, and at the request of Governor Deneen, he revised the laws of the State pertaining to the National Guard and served as Chief of Staff of the Illinois Division. This position he held until the fall of 1913 when he was detailed by the War Department to duty at Staunton Military Academy, Staunton, Virginia. He was promoted to the grade of Major on the retired list in 1914.

At the outbreak of the World War he was relieved from duty at Staunton and detailed to duty in the Militia Bureau in Washington, serving therein with distinction until he reverted to the retired list on March 11, 1922. He attained the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in 1920 and was promoted Colonel on the retired list in 1930.

After his retirement he lived in New York City and Washington, D.C. until the illness, from which he had been suffering for many years, claimed him at last and he peacefully passed away on February 23, 1935 at the age of 79, thus bringing to a close a life of long and  p102 faithful service to his country which could not but merit the words found in the last verse of the song of his Alma Mater:—

And when our work is done

Our course on earth be run

May it be said well done.

Be thou at peace.

He lies buried where he had always wanted to be, in the cemetery of his beloved West Point.

His Son.

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Page updated: 31 Oct 15