20 March 1917
CO. K STAYS AT DES MOINES
A telegram received by the Mayor Smith from Adjutant General Logan late
last evening says: "Mustering out of Second Infantry indefinitely
postponed." This cancels all preparations of a homecoming for Co. K
this week and probably means that the Iowa guardsman are being held for
service in the war with Germany which yesterday's dispatches declare is
inevitable and drawing near.
CALL IOWA TROOPS
MUSTERING OUT OF GUARDS IS SUSPENDED
DUE TO THE ACTION OF GERMANY
New and Aggressive Action Will Be Taken To Protect
American Shipping As
a Result of Sinking Unarmed Merchantmen
A Des Moines dispatch in last night's Sioux City Tribune says:
|"Major Sturdevant, in charge of mustering out
of the Second Iowa regiment at Fort Des Moines received an
order from the war department late Sunday directing that the
regiment be held until further orders."
The order came as bitter
disappointment to the men, who had served eight months on the Mexican
border, and were within two days of home. The work of mustering out was
practically completed, and the men were to have left for home stations
on special trains Tuesday afternoon.
Gossip at the fort is to the effect that the other Iowa regiments will
be called back in service within a week.
Even thought the order is countermanded within a day or two, it will
require another week to muster the men out since everything has been
checked up to Tuesday night and all the paper work based on the
supposition that the men would leave for home on that day.
Last night's papers declare war with Germany seems inevitable and that
United States is preparing for aggressive action by striking at German
submarines which sunk three American vessels Sunday. The dispatches
|"New and aggressive action to protect
American shipping against German submarines appears certain as
a result of yesterday's sinking of three unarmed merchantmen,
with possible loss of American lives."
Calling of congress in extra session before April 16, loomed as the
strongest possibility, although President Wilson was understood to have
other courses under consideration.
With American ships already being armed, the most probably step would
be an active campaign to clear submarines out of the shipping lanes.
There appears to be no plan to have the United States enter the war in
the sense that the European nations have entered it.
The fact that some American ships are on the other side of the ocean
unarmed is a factor in the situation, and as large warships are
ineffective against submarines, the problem for the government is to
get small submarine chasers. Most of the American fleet is needed at
home to guard against operation of German submarines in American
SUBJECT TO CALL
Obligation of Guardsman Under the Federal Law
Webster City Journal: Owing to the many misinterpretations placed on
late laws dealing with the national guard, many people, and especially
the guardsmen themselves are at a loss to explain definitely the exact
status of the troops after mustering out. Thorough information obtained
from acts of congress, enables the Journal to publish the facts
concerning the matters most under debate.
All national guardsmen are subject to a call of the president, to
defend the nation, until their enlistments expire. This applies to all
men, whether under the federal oath or not. In case of war, every man,
civilian or military, would of course, be subject to a call for
volunteers, but the guard units would be called first, and would go as
a unit wherever the president sent them.
The take of the federal oath known to army men as the "dual oath"
places men under federal jurisdiction, and they participate in federal
pay, which is more than the state pays. Under this oath a man pledges
himself to three years active service and three years in the militia
reserve. Those not taking the oath are not in the reserve, except those
who enlisted after the June movement of the militia. These men,
enlisting after the movements, are automatically under the dual oath,
by virtue of the law going into effect at that time.
The dual oath does not, as its enemies have claimed, prescribe any
great amount of responsibility onto the civilian soldiers. They are
subject to special calls of the president, while those not taking the
not. Special calls, however, involve only duty for defensive purposes,
and in such event it is very improbably that the federal oath men would
be called before any other guard unit. An advantage of the dual oath is
that when under jurisdiction of the federal government the pay is much
more, and the men are not subject to call to put down strikes and riots
of local natures. The state troops are subject to such calls.
In case of another call those companies declining the dual oath would
be compelled on the first call to go through the red tape of another
mustering into federal service, the same procedure which took up so
much time at the call to the Mexican border.
-source: LeMars Semi-Weekly
Sentinel newspaper, LeMars, Plymouth Co., Iowa; Friday, 20 Mar 1917