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The day book. (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, April 18, 1916, LAST EDITION, Image 3

Image and text provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045487/1916-04-18/ed-1/seq-3/

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SAFETY FIRST FOR AMERICAN TROOPS MAIN
CONSIDERATION IN MEXICAN STAND
San Antonio, April 18. Basing
their belief that the report of Pancho
Villa's death had been manufactured
at Juarez, on a report of Gen. Bell,
submitted to Major Gen. Funston to
day, army commanders today began
a new hunt for the bandit leader.
El Paso, Tex., April 18. Villa hunt
today was , secondary matter. Pro
tection of U. S. troops in Mexico is
now the main thing. Gen. Pershing
is understood today to have made a
report to that effect to Gen. Funston.
Question whether body presuma
bly being taken into Chihuahua City
is that of Villa was still considered
important, but safety of American
expedition, following Parral incident
and withdrawal request from Gen.
Carranza, was uppermost in minds of
army chiefs along border.
Gen. Pershing has left his ad
vanced base at Satevo and returned
to Namiquipa staff headquarters. At
Namiquipa, about midway along the
lines of communication, he can keep
closer watch on the situation and
better direct his army. No American
troops are now believed to be south
of Santa Cruz.
If Villa is not dead but has escaped
into Durango, as formerly reported,
American pursuit has apparently
been halted. If body reported ex
humed west of Satevo is not Villa's
neither U. S. or Mexican authorities
have any adequate idea of bandit
chief's whereabouts, they admitted
today.
Mexican officials, only authorities
professing to have direct knowledge
of finding of Villa's- body near San
Francisco Borja, claimed wires which
went down last night prevented re
ceipt of further information early to
day. While failure of Mexicans rap
idly to produce body for identifica
tion by Americans has increased
skepticism, delay may be due to nat
ural causes, such as slow means of
transportation. It was also pointed,
out that Carranza officials may be
honest and yet themselves victims
of hoax or misapprehension.
If Col. Carlos Carranza, who
knows Villa intimately, identifies the
corpse as Villa the United States is
expected to accept the identification
and recall the troops. No obstacles
are expected to be placed in the way
of American officials also identifying
the body, but if the de facto govern
ment officially announces confirma
tion of Villa's death government of
ficials here today do not see how it
could be disputed.
With the American Army in Mex
ico, April 16, Via Wireless to Colum
bus, N. M., April 18. Gen. Pershing
arrived today at his field headquar
ters near Namiquipa after an all
night ride from- Satevo -for confer
ence with members of staff.
Men in Pershing's command
brought details of Parral fight of
'April 12, which placed matter in the
light of a deliberate attacfby Car
ranzista soldiers, even possibly of an
attempt to annihilate the little force
of 114 cavalrymen under Major
Tompkins.
After one of his men had been
killed Tompkins made up his mind
that if his command was going to be
slaughtered they would die fighting.
He "cut loose," as one of Pershing's
men said, and the Mexicans soon re
treated, leaving 40 dead on the field.
Tompkins held his men in restraint
until he noticed on an adjacent hill
in Parral a body of soldiers over
whom the Mexican flag was flying.
In answer to Tompkins' question,
Gen. Lozango, a Carranza officer who
led the American column into the
city, told him that the troops on the
hill were part of the garrison watch
ing the movements of the Americans
with intent to guard them. '
Just then the so-called guard fired
a volley into the American detach
ment, killing one trooper
I -TIF 1 1 iiifciiliMMi M M MM

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