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Evening star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, December 22, 1929, Image 84

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/7 hirty Years in the Service of God and Country
Col. Edmund P. Easterbrook, Whose Retire
ment as Chief of Army Chaplains Brings
to a Close a Remarkable Career, Served in
Two Wars, Accompanied the Troops to
Cuba and the Philippines, and Won
Distinction as Senior Chaplain of the Army
of Occupation in Germany.
■jrv EACHING the statutory retirement
m W age limit of 64 years on December
22, 1929, Col. Edmund P. Easter
§ brook, chief of Chap la after a
successful military career covering
a period of more than 30 years, will be placed
upon the retired list of the Regular Army.
Born at Torquay, England, on December 22,
1865, Col. Easterbrook completed his early edu
cation in the graded schools and Torquay Pub
lic College, in England. He then came to the
United States and entered Drew Theological
Seminary, located at Madison, N. J. His first
parish was at Stuyvesant Landing, on the Hud
son, where he served from 1892 to 1894. Prom
1894 to 1898 he was pastor of a church in
Rochester, N. Y.
At the outbreak of the war with Bpain, Col.
Easterbrook entered the military service as
chaplain of the 2d New York Volunteer In
fantry, serving from July 31, 1898, until he
was mustered out on October 25, 1898. Scarce
ly a fortnight later, November 7, 1898, he be
came chaplain of the 202 d New York Volunteer
Infantry, and with that regiment he served in
Cuba and was mustered out on April 15. 1899.
Prom the time of his acceptance of a com
mission as a chaplain in the Regular Army, on
February 14, 1900, up to the present time, his
record of service is studded with commenda
tions of the highest character, penned by the
various commanding officers under whom he
has served.
The first orders received by Col. Easterbrook
after becoming a member of the military estab
lishment, dated February 21, 1900, directed him
to report at a post in New York Harbor until
the transport Sumner sailed for the Philippines.
In due time the Sumner arrived in the islands
and Col. Easterbrook was on duty with the 29th
United States Volunteer Infantry from June 30,
1900, to March 22, 1901, in the southern de
partment of Luzon, Philippine Islands. On May
9, 1901, he reported for duty with the 17th
United States Infantry and accompanied Com
panies A and P to Manila, from which port they
sailed on September 12, 1901, for Z&mbanga.
From this time until he reported back to regi
mental headquarters, on January 27, 1902, Col.
Easterbrook visited Jolo, Bongao, Malabang,
Parang Parang and Cotabato.
The following March he sailed from Manila
for San Francisco, arriving in the United States
April 1, 1902, and proceeded to Vancouver
Barracks, Washington, with the 17th Infantry.
Col. Easterbrook’s sojourn in the United States
was brief, for scarcely had five months elapsed
when he received orders for the Philippines
for duty with the Artillery Corps, and he sailed
on or about October 1, 1902, and we find him
with station at Passay Garrison. His second
tour of service in the islands was much longer
in duration than the first, and he did not see
American shores again until two and a half
years later. Prom August 22 to October 16,
1903, Col. Easterbrook visited Japan and China
on leave, and on June 9, 1905, he was returned
from duty in the Philippines and assigned to
duty at Fort Flagler, Wash.
"JN the Spring of 1906 he was assigned to
duty at Fort Worden, Wash., and in August
of that same year he reported for duty on
the United States Army transport Crook for
a short period of service while this vessel was
engaged in obtaining pictures from San Fran
cisco to Honolulu and Alaska and other data
for stereopticon lectures. In January, 1908, •
Col. Easterbrook was returned to the Puget
Bound district,, and on September 20, 1909, he
was recommended for promotion by Maj.
Andrew Hero, who Is now a major general and .
chief of Coast Artillery. In recommending him
for promotion, the then Maj. Hero said: “He
(Col. Easterbrook) possesses the qualifications a
chaplain should have for efficient work amongst
the men, enlisting their sympathies in a manly,
soldierly manner, and in my opinion is worthy
of special distinction for exceptional efficiency
in his particular line of duties.” He was pro
moted to the grade of major on February 10,
Chaplain Easterbrook remained on duty in
the Northwcstern part of the United States
until the outbreak of the World War, perform
ing his professional duties in a manner most
noteworthy, respected by his brother officers,
beloved by the enlisted men and a real friend
to all the civilian communities. To take his
part in the conflict of the Great War he arrived
in Prance and joined the American Expedi
tionary Forces on September 13, 1918, on duty
with the 69th Coast Artillery. Shortly after his
arrival overseas, Chaplain Easterbrook was
transferred to the headquarters of the 3d Amer
ican Army on the Rhine. He later was the
senior chaplain of the American forces in Ger
many, in charge of all the religious and wel
fare activities of the American troops in
'X’HE United States vdll ever be proud of her
military representatives on the historical
Rhine. No body of troops since the days when
Caesar’s legions built the military road along
the picturesque river from Coblenz and the
famous bridge at Urmitz have equaled the
American soldier in appearance, efficiency and
Their mission was different from that of any
other army of occupation. Though they march
ed into Germany as conquerors and victors in
the world’s greatest conflict, yet their hearts
beat with kindness and charity for a con
quered race. They sought no conquest nor
spoils of war; no malice nor spirit of revenge
actuated their deeds. They came as real, true
friends to a broken, disheartened people whose
horizon of the future was clouded with sus
picious malice, hatred and despair because of
a lost cause. But within a short time the
German people caught the spirit of the Amer
ican soldier, saw that he desired no glory nor
gain and a personal and international brother
hood dispelled all enmity and fired the hearts
of conquerors and conquered alike.
Chaplain Easterbrook’s office was in the head
quarters at Coblenz and his place of worship
was the chapel at the Royal Palace of the
Kaiser and his staff. He conducted the re
ligious activities of all the chaplains In Ger
many, and all who came to his office, soldier
and civilian alike, were always greeted with
a cordial welcome.
During the month of September, 1921, he
accompanied the composite battalion of Amer
ican troops to Paris and later to London, to
participate in the ceremonies incident to the
placing of the Medal of Honor on the Tomb
of the Unknown French Soldier and the Tomb
of the Unknown British Warrior by the gen
eral of the Armies, Gen. John J. Pershing.
In order to promote a more cordial rela
tionship between the allied armies, Chaplain
Easterbrook Initiated the conference of all the
chaplains of the British, French, Belgian and
American armies. These conferences gave an
opportunity for an exchange of ideas and
methods of work among the soldiers and ce
mented a real friendship and fellowship
among the chaplains that still exists.
Many and arduous were his duties, yet
every problem was settled with tact and
diplomacy. Maj. Gen. H. T. Allen, command
ing general of the American forces in Ger
many, in commenting upon Chaplain Easter
brook, said: “His untiring zeal, broad vision,
intelligence and generosity have made him
eminently successful throughout a career I
have known since 1898. His services In the
American forces in Germany have merited ap
proval of all classes and creeds.” In apprecia
tion of his services of the troops of the
French army of occupation, the government
of Prance decorated him with the Legion of
M"!?. changes have been brought about
during the more than 30 years that
Col. Easterbrook has been connected with the
military service. At the time of his entry
into the service there were approximately 25
chaplains in the entire Army, and they were,
to a more or less extent, merely tolerated.
That this condition of affairs has been radical
ly changed is evidenced by the fact that the
present authorized strength of the Corps of
Chaplains is 125, which includes the chief of
chaplains. In the days of ’9B the duties of
a chaplain consisted principally of directing
the religious and moral welfare of the military
personnel, but now the duties of a chaplain >
are many and varied, and he is one of the
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Cos. Edmund P . Easterbrook, retiring chief of the Army chaplains.
Copyright by Harris & Ewing.
most engaged persons on a post. In addition
to conducting the religious services at a post,
the present-day chaplain is charged with the
many .recreational activities that are now
participated in by the service personnel.
Usually the poet chaplain takes a prominent
part in the various forms of athletics engaged
in by the post personnel, and a number of
strong post and station teams in the various
lines of sport have been developed the past
few years..
It is interesting to note in this connection
that both Col. Easterbroek and Capt. Sydney
Key Evans, chief of Navy chaplains, were bom
abroad. Col. Easterbrook, as noted above,
being bom in England, while the Navy chief
of chaplains was bom in Wales on October
20, 1873, making him 56 years of age in Octo
ber of this year. Capt. Evans is of the
Protestant Episcopalian faith, while Col.
Easterbrook is a member of the Methodist
Episcopal denomination. Capt. Evans entered
the naval service on December 5, 1907, nearly
a full decade after Col. Easterbrook entered
the service of the military establishment.
The exceptional and distinguished services
rendered by Col. Easterbrook during the past
30 years was recognized when he was selected
by former President Coolidge to be the chief
of chaplains on December 10, 1927, and on
April 6, 1928, he took the oath of that office
at Washington. The brief tenure of Col.
Easterbrook as chief of Army chaplains was
saddened with the death on June 26 of this
year of Mrs. Easterbrook, one of the most
beloved of Army women. Possessing charm,
tact, good judgment, energy and force, she
always was a leader in her community. Her
wonderful ability to co-operate made her wel
come everywhere, and this contributed greatly
to the success of her husband’s mission. Mrs.
Easterbrook accomplished great work in the
homes of the soldier, where her presence was
helpful, friendly and constantly sought. In
spite of her time-consuming endeavors in the
missionary field and in the Sunday school
at the various posts at which Col. Easterbrook
served, she was able to play an important part
in the social work of the garrison and the
home. With her death, the great Army fam
ily lost one of the most capable, efficient and
beloved workers ever known, whose influence
in the service will continue for many years.
Col. Easterbrook plans to remain in Wash
ington after his retirement on December 22 at
least until the graduation of his son Ernest,
who is now a second classman at the United
States Military Academy at West Point, whose
graduation will take place in June, 1931. There
are four other children, as follows: Capt. Arthur
E. Easterbrook, an Air Corps officer, now en
route to the Philippine Islands; Wilfred Easter
brook and William Easterbrook, both of whom
are living in Seattle, Wash., and a daughter.
Mrs. J. Lawton Collins, wife of Capt. Collins, In
fantry. who is now on duty as an instructor at
the Infantry School at Fort Benning, Ga.
As to what line of endeavor Col. Easterbrook
will devote himself to when he relinquishes the
directing reins of the chaplain office is not
known, but with the ever-increasing demands
now being made upon Capt. Alfred C. Oliver,
the chaplain stationed at the Army Medical
Center in this city, where are located Walter
Reed General Hospital, the Army Medical, Den
tal and Veterinary Schools, it would occasion no
surprise if Col. Easterbrook would not become
emeritus of the Army Medical Center, where he
could accomplish an incalculable amount of
good In "building up the morale and faith of
those veterans of the Great War whose bodies
have been wracked in pain for more than a
decade. Col. Easterbrook’s tenure of office as
chief of Army chaplains has been brief, but dur
ing that short span of time a deep feeling of
respect, loyalty and devotion to duty has per
meated the Chaplains’ Corps and his retirement
by operation of the law is deeply regretted by
every officer and enlisted man in the service.
Reindeer Production Grows.
'T'HE "deerboy” may soon rival the cowboy as
a picturesque character of the wide open
spaces, if the growth of the reindeer Industry
keeps on at its present rate.
No longer will the old practices carried on by
the Laplander and the Eskimo do, as the infant
industry begins to take on larger proportions.
• Government experts at Fairbanks. Alaska,
where the Biological Survey’s experimental
ranch is operated, foresee the day in the near
future when open-range production of the rein
deer will call for the development of the same
system in handling stock as is now applied on
the large beef ranches of the United States.
However, the time is not yet at hand when it
will be politic to paraphrase the famous cry of
the West and shout, “Ride ’em, deerboy.”
Intensive Study of Food.
'J'EN years of intensive study in the value of
various foods and their vitamin contents
has finally resulted in the completion of a re
port by Sybil L. Smith, chemist in the depart
ment of Agriculture. Tests of more than 160
foodstuffs have been conducted by Miss‘Smith
and her report gives not only the content in
vitamins A. B and C, but also tells of the effect
of cooking, canning and otherwise processing.
The data go so far as to Include the vitamin
content of the various parts of the foods, such
as the pulp, the Juice, the leaves, stems and
6o on.

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