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Bill Thayer

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 [decorative delimiter] Class of 1852

Vol. II

(Born Pa.)

George H. Mendell

(Ap'd Pa.)


George Henry Mendell: Born Oct. 12, 1831.

Military History. — Cadet at the Military Academy, July 1, 1848, to July 1, 1852, when he was graduated and promoted in the Army to

Bvt. Second Lieut., Top. Engineers, July 1, 1852.

Served: as Asst. Top. Engineer on the Survey of the Northwestern Lakes, 1852‑54; on the Staff of Bvt. Major-General Wool, commanding the Department of the Pacific, Apr. 3 to Nov. 30, 1854; as Assistant Top. Engineer of Exploration for a Railroad from the Bay of San Francisco to Ft. Yuma, Cal., 1854‑55; on Expedition against hostile tribes in

(Second Lieut., Top. Engineers, Mar. 3, 1855)

Oregon and Washington Territory, May to Dec., 1855; as Top. Engineer of the District of Puget Sound, Wash., during Operations against the Indians, Mar. 25 to Sep. 29, 1856; in charge of construction of the Military

(First Lieut., Top. Engineers, July 1, 1856)

Roads in Oregon and Washington Territory, 1856‑58; and at the Military Academy, 1859‑63, as Asst. Professor of Natural and Experimental

(Captain, Top. Engineers, Sep. 28, 1861: Corps of Engineers, Mar. 3, 1863)

Philosophy, Jan. 3, 1859, to Sep. 1, 1860, — and Principal Assistant Professor, Sep. 1, 1860, to June 18, 1863.​a

Served during the Rebellion of the Seceding States, 1861‑66: as Top. Engineer of Colonel Miles's Division in the Manassas Campaign of July, 1861; . . .º in command of the U. S. Engineer Battalion, June 28, 1863, to Aug. 11, 1864, being engaged in the Pennsylvania, Rapidan, and Richmond

(Major, Corps of Engineers, Aug. 15, 1864)

Campaigns in making reconnoissances, building, guarding, and destroying bridges, constructing batteries, block-houses, rifle-trenches, etc.,

(Bvt. Lieut.‑Col., Aug. 15, 1864,
for Gallant and Meritorious Services during the Campaign before Richmond)

 p474  making and repairing roads, and carrying on Siege Operations before and about Petersburg, Va.; as Asst. Engineer on the Defenses of Baltimore, Md., Aug. 19 to Sep. 8, 1864; at the Military Academy as Instructor of Practical Military Engineering, Sep. 21, 1864, to July 3, 1865;

(Bvt. Colonel, Mar. 13, 1865,
for Gallant and Meritorious Services during the Rebellion)

and as Superintending Engineer of the construction of the Defenses of New Bedford Harbor, Mas., July 8, 1865, to Oct. 29, 1866, and of the Preservation of Plymouth Beach, Mas., July 30 to Oct. 29, 1866.

Served: as Superintending Engineer in charge of the Fortifications of Alcatraz Island and of Lime Point, San Francisco Harbor, Cal., since Jan. 1, 1867, — of the Defenses at the mouth of the Columbia River, Feb., 1867, to Apr., 1871, — of Defenses at Ft. Point, San Francisco, Cal.,

(Lieut.‑Colonel, Corps of Engineers, June 30, 1879)

Mar. to Apr. 30, 1870, Sep. 7, 1885, to June 23, 1886, and since Sep. 6, 1886, — of San Diego Bay since Sep. 6, 1886, — of the Removal of Rincon Rock, San Francisco Harbor, Cal., 1872‑77, — and of various River and Harbor improvements in California, removal of wrecks, surveys, etc., since 1874; as Member of the Board of Engineers for Fortifications on the Pacific Coast, Jan. 1, 1867, to June 23, 1886, — of Commission upon a System of Irrigation in the San Joaquin, Tulare, and Sacramento Valleys, 1873‑74, — of Advisory Board of Commissioners on the Harbor Lines of San Francisco, Cal., 1874 to Mar., 1881, — and of various Engineer Boards, 1873‑90; absent in Europe on professional duty,

(Colonel, Corps of Engineers, Sep. 16, 1886)

Mar. 30 to July 29, 1889; as Supervising Engineer of Districts in California, Oregon, and Washington in charge of junior officers, Sep. 1, 1884, to Dec. 3, 1888, — and Division Engineer for the Inspection of Engineer Works in the Pacific territory of the United States, since Dec. 3, 1888.

Civil History. — Engineer to Water Commissioners of the City of San Francisco, Cal., 1876‑78. Author of Report on Water Supply for San Francisco, 1877. Consulting Engineer of the State of California, 1878‑80.

Vol. IV
[Supplement, Vol. IV: 1890‑1900]

Military History. — Division Engineer of Pacific Division to Oct. 12, 1895, and Inspector of Engineer Works on Pacific coast after 1892. — In charge of construction of defenses of San Francisco harbor, 1890‑95, including gun and mortar batteries at Fort Point, torpedo casemates at Alcatraz Island and Point San José, and torpedo storehouse at Yerba Buena Island. — In charge of construction of Oakland harbor to 1895. — Chairman of Boards of Engineer Officers which reported on various subjects, as follows: viz., Deepwater Harbor on coast of Southern California between Points Dume and San Juan Capistrano, 1890; Ship canal to connect Puget Sound with Lake Washington, 1890; Improvement of Sacramento and Feather rivers, Cal., 1890; Improvement of Humboldt harbor, Cal., 1890; Improvement of Columbia River near The Dalles, Ore., to overcome obstruction to navigation at Celilo and Three Miles Rapids, 1892‑93; Improvement of mouth of Columbia River by a jetty, 1893; Harbor Lines Boards for California, Oregon, and Washington waters to 1895; California Débris Commission appointed by the President, 1893‑95. — Member of Commission appointed by President to select a site for Naval dry-dock, on Pacific coast north of latitude 42°, 1890. — Member of Board to select a site for a military post at San Diego, Cal., 1891. — Member of Board of Engineers, New York, when considering Pacific coast defenses to 1895.

Retired from Active Service, he being 64 Years of Age, Oct. 12, 1895.

Civil History. — Consulting Engineer, San Francisco, Cal. — Member of California Academy of Sciences, of Technical Society of the Pacific Coast, and of American Society of Civil Engineers. — President of the Board of Commissioners of Public Works of San Francisco from Dec. 31, 1899 to –––––; Residence, San Francisco, Cal.

Vol. V
[Supplement, Vol. V: 1900‑1910]

Military History. — Retired officer.

Civil History. — President of the Board of Commissioners of Public Works of San Francisco from Dec. 31, 1899, to Oct. 19, 1902. — Residence, San Francisco, Cal.

Died Oct. 19, 1902, at San Francisco, Cal.: Aged 71.

Buried, Cypress Lawn Memorial Park, Colma, CA.

See Annual Association of Graduates, U. S. M. A., 1903, for an obituary notice, with a portrait.

Thayer's Note:

a In 1862, he translated, jointly with Indicates a West Point graduate and gives his Class. William Craighill, General Jomini's "Précis de l'Art de la Guerre".

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