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Bill Thayer

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 [decorative delimiter] Class of 1855

Vol. II

(Born Mas.)

George H. Elliot

(Ap'd Mas.)


Military History. — Cadet at the Military Academy, July 1, 1851, to July 1, 1855, when he was graduated and promoted in the Army to

Bvt. Second Lieut. of Artillery, July 1, 1855.

Second Lieut., 1st Artillery, July 1, 1855.

Served: in garrison at Ft. Columbus, N. Y., 1855; on frontier duty at Ft. McIntosh, Tex., 1856, — and Scouting, 1856, being engaged against Lipan Indians in a Skirmish on the head waters of the Nueces River, Tex. Apr. 13, 1856; in garrison at Ft. McHenry, Md., 1856‑57; and as

 p610  (Transferred to Corps of Engineers, Jan. 26, 1857)

Asst. Engineer in the construction of the Defenses of San Francisco Harbor, Cal., 1857‑61.

Served during the Rebellion of the Seceding States, 1861‑66: as Superintending Engineer of the Fortifications at Fort Point and Alcatraz Island, San Francisco Harbor, Cal., July 20 to Nov. 7, 1861; and as Asst.

(First Lieut., Corps of Engineers, Aug. 3, 1861)

Engineer on the Defenses of the Pacific Coast, Nov. 7, 1861, to Nov. 23, 1865.

Captain, Corps of Engineers, Mar. 3, 1863.

Served: as Superintending Engineer of the Fortifications at Alcatraz Island, Mar. 8, 1862, to Jan. 1, 1867, — of the Pacific Coast, Nov. 23,

(Bvt. Major, Mar. 13, 1865, for Meritorious Services during the Rebellion)

1865, to Jan. 1, 1867, — and of the construction of Fort at Fort Point, Cal., Jan. 1, 1867, to Feb., 1870, — and of Surveys of San Francisco

(Major, Corps of Engineers, Mar. 7, 1867)

Peninsula, Jan. 1, 1867, to Apr., 1869; as Member of the Pacific Board of Engineers, Dec. 4, 1866, to Feb., 1870; as Engineer Secretary of Lighthouse Board, Apr. 12, 1870, to May 21, 1874 (Inspecting Lighthouse systems in Europe, Apr. 28 to Sep. 11, 1873); in charge of Washington Aqueduct, Nov. 15, 1870, to Oct. 13, 1871; as Assistant to the Chief of Engineers, at Washington, D. C., May 21, 1874, to Oct. 26,

(Lieut.‑Colonel, Corps of Engineers, Aug. 8, 1882)

1882; in charge of various Works of Defense in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, and of River and Harbor Improvements and removal of wrecks in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut, Nov. 1, 1882, to Apr. 1, 1887; as Member of Advisory Council to Rhode Island State Board of Harbor Commissioners, Feb. 27, 1884, to Apr. 1, 1887; on sick leave of absence in Europe, Apr. 1, 1887, to July 1, 1889; and in charge of the Washington Aqueduct, — of increasing the water supply of Washington city, — and erection of fish-ways at the Potomac Falls, since July 17, 1889.

Civil History. — Author of "Lighthouse Establishments in Europe," 1874; and of "The Presidio of San Francisco, Cal.," 1874.

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

Civil History. — In charge of the Washington aqueduct; of increasing the water supply of Washington, D. C.; and of the erection of fishways at the Great Falls of the Potomac, July 17, 1889 to March 31, 1895. — Member of the Light House Board, at Washington, D. C., Feb. 19, 1892 to June 2, 1893.

(Colonel, Corps of Engineers, May 18, 1893)

Retired from Active Service, he being 64 Years of Age, March 31, 1895,

but by special direction of Congress contained in the Act approved March 2, 1895, he continued in charge of the improvement of the Dalecarlia Reservoir of the Washington aqueduct system, which he had planned and commenced, until its completion, Nov. 15, 1895.

Died March 23, 1900, at Marmion (?), Va.: Aged —.​a

Thayer's Note:

a This is a bit puzzling: the Register has just stated that he was retired in 1895 because he was 64 years old; as elsewhere, this was, as the Register often states, "by operation of law", and the law in these other cases, or in as many as I've been able to check, was regularly taken to the strictest letter, the date of retirement being the officer's sixty-fourth birthday.

We can safely infer that Col. Elliot was born Mar. 31, 1831, and therefore was 68 years old when he died; the Register usually rounds up and should normally have had "Aged 69." Online, the only relevant source I've found confirms it: a letterbook of his (U.S. Coast Survey, San Francisco, Jan. 16, 1858 to Jan. 4, 1860) is in the collections indexed in the Online Archive of California, and the bibliographical record there gives the year of his birth as 1831.

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