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PENSIONS IN THE PRESENT WAR THE number of pensioners of the wax of 1898 will probably be less in proportion to the number en- I in the conflict than the pensioner* of the Civil War. My opinion is based on a knowledge of the precautions being taken by the sur geon general of the army to provide against fraud in pension claims. The surgeon general of the army tells me that not only are the recruits being examined carefully before being ac cepted for service but that they will be examined with the same care before they are mustered out. In this way the War Department will make a record of the condition of each man when his service is over and will be able to spot a fraudulent claim for disability. This system has been used already with great success in the .case of en listed men in the regular army. Each regiment has a surgeon and two as sistants. Then there are trained hos pital steward;'. There should be a very perfect record of all the cases of men who suffer from disease or wounds in the army. Our agent finds there are many fraudulent cases of disability growing out of the Civil Wkr. Then the sur geon general of the army tells me that they can cure any case of hernia, for example, by a simple, operation But, he says, a great many men refuse to take the treatment because they would rather draw a pension than be cured. This refers to enlisted men wn i now in the service who are pensioned under the gen iral law. A special law will not be needed to pension the men who suffer from wounds or In th« present war; The pension of an enlisted man in jured in a fight with the Spaniards in Cuba or Manila is from $6 to 5100 a month for disability contracted in the Bervice of hie • ■ untry. A«soldier wh mes back from Cuba or* Manila with both hands shot off will draw $100 a month. A soldier who loses his eyesight en tirely will be entitled to $100 a month-. A soldi •!' who loses both legs will get $72 a month. If he loses one arm or one leg he will get $2 I or $45, according to the where his leg or arm was cut off. The pensions of naval men are in creased by the prize money obt : during the war. That constitutes a fund, the interest on which gives naval men an addition to their pensions; but this sum cannot exceed 50 per cent of the pension allow cd. In the case of the men who first lost their lives— the men on the Winslow— the Government will probably act as follows: The young ensign who died for his WHAT THE AMERICAN CARTOONISTS THINK OF THE WAR country was not married, I believe. If he had a mother dependent on him her pension would be $16 a month. If no dependent mother, but a depeadent father, he would get a pension of $16. Following in their order, in default of a father, the pension would go to a de pendent brother or a dependent sister or to orphan brothers or sisters not yet 16 years of age. The pensions increase in amount with the rank of the officer. If the officer left a widow she would be entitled to $16 a month, and if any children they would get $2 a month un til the youngest of them was 16. If the widow should marry or die her pension would go to the children until the youngest was 16. This is the pension rate for the family of a lieutenant. The widow of an enlisted man would draw $12 and her minor children $2 each We have some curious claims coming to us in connection with the law grant ing pensions to minor children. I have an illustration in my desk of the injus tice which may be done the Govern ment by a tc-o liberal construction of the pension laws. Here is the record of a claim made on behalf of the children of a soldier of the Civil War. This man was in the Missouri Home Guards. He served two months. In the same year< he died. Thirty years afterward his ( widow filed a claim for herself and children. < The youngest of those children was* born before the war began and was< therefore more than thirty years old< when the claim was filed. That child is nearly forty years old now. The' mother died before her claim was ad-< justed. The claims of the children for< back pensions aggregate $4500. The law< as it has been construed in some cases ( would give them that amount. But I' don't believe that was the intent of< the law. . < Basing an estimate on the numberj of pensioners made by the Civil War,, how great an additional pension list 1 can we expect in the natural course of' events from the war of IS9S? < That question depends upon a goodj many conditions, of course. In the last, war there were 2,772,000 men enlisted, according to the official reports. Col- 1 onel Ainsworth estimates that there 1 were 2.10'). 000 men actually in service, i To-day there are 990,958 pensioners, of ( whom about 745,000 are veterans. There ( are. you see, more than a third of the who took part in the Civil War 1 ■ m the pension roll. i If 250,000 troops take part in the ope- ( rations in Cuba and the Philippines, in ( the ordinary course, of events it is to be expected that 85.000 will be on the pen- 1 sion roll thirty-five years hence. Buti of < ourse the number of veterans of the. Civil War now drawing pensions does not measure the list. A great many i veterans have died. ( THE SAN FRANCISCO CALL, SUNDAY, MAY 29, 1898. The average pension drawn by the veterans of the Civil War is $133 a year. The average pensioH under the general i law which applies to soldiers of the war of 1898 is $165 a year. If one-half of the men who go into the army now are eventuaHy put on the -pension list, put ting the number at 250,000, th-e aggre gate of pensions should not be more than $20,625,000 at any time. The pension list of the Civil War will take $148,000,000 this year. As I said, an estimate must be taken .with many allowances, because so much depjmds on conditions. If Con gress should follow my recommenda tion and limit the pensions to widows to those who were the pensioners' wives when the pensions were allowed, there : would be a big saving. We pensioned : five or six widows of the War of 1812 last year. At that rate we shall be granting pensions to widows of the war of 1897 in 1984. This administration is not granting fewer pensions than the last. In the ten months just past we granted 45.000 new pensions. In the twelve months ending June 30 last, which included four months of my term, the number granted was 40.000. But the number of pensions should see U natural decrease WAY THE VOLUNTEERS WILL BE EXAMINED When Mustered In jand Mustered Out of the Army. 3 BY SURGEON-GENERAL STERNBERG, U. S. A. \ 1 ~n "T O arrangements have been made ' \ I for the examination of the men 1 \| when they are mustered out, but ► it is the intention that they shall > be examined so there shall be no >doubt about their physical condition Hvhen they leave the army. At present »we are fully occupied passing on the ireeruits. ) There is no ground ior the complaint kthat our examination has been too kStricl and has shut out some good men. kThere are plenty of good sound men in .the country and there is no reason why we should not have them. Here are the conditions necessary in a recruit: * A tolerably just proportion between 'the different parts of the trunk and 'members; a well-shaped head, thick 'hair, a countenance expressive of >health, with a lively eye; skin not too > white; lips red; teeth white and in good voice Btrong; skin firm; ; chest well formed; belly lank; limbs ] 'muscular; feet arched and of moderate i >length; hand large. The gait should i now and the amount appropriated for pensions should be less and not greater, as it will be this year. I had an amusing experience with a pension fraud not long ago. The son in-law of a Pennsylvania Congressman came to me to complain that his house hold was being disorganized by the visits of one of my special agents to his colored cook. The agent was inquiring into the case of Mary Butler. Now his cook, he said, knew nothing about Mary Butler, but my agent had got her so worked up that she was not fit for anything about the house. He described the agent to me and I said I knew the young man was all right and suggested that he have his cook tell all she knew about Mary Butler. He went away insisting that she didn't know anything. ' A few days later the woman con •■ fessed. It was the case of a soldier i who died nearly thirty years ago. He had no wife but' an enterprising pen ; sion attorney fitted a widow to him and she began to draw a pension. After a time the woman died, but the agent found another to take her place. Then the second woman died and the ag-ent found a third. The third woman was imy friend's cook. It was not surpris be sprightly and springy, speech prompt and clear and manner cheerful. All lank, slight, puny men, with con tracted figures, whose development is, nr- it were, arrested, should be set aside. The reverse of the characteristics of a good constitution will indicate infirm health or a weakly habit of body; loose flabby, white skin; long cylin drical neck; long, flat feet; very fair complexion; fine hair; wan, sallow countenance, etc. Before his examination the recruit must be "washed with sc-ap and wat er." He must be examined nude, and the following points must be noted: That he has the free use of his limbs; that his chest is ample; that his hear ing, vision and speech are perfect; that he has no tumors or ulcerated or ex tensively cicatrixed legs; no rupture or chronic cutaneous affection; that he has not received any contusion or wound of the head that may impair his faculties; that he is not a drunkard; is not subject to convulsions, and has no infectious or other disorder that may unlit him for military service. Inquiry is also made concerning the parentage ing that the visits of the agent upset her. The pension laws are all right. It is the construction of the pension laws that has made so much trouble. I believe that if the pension laws had been construed correctly from the be | ginning the Government would be pay- I ing out about half the amount it mnv I spends for pensions and the pensioners would be better satisfied. The soldier is never allowed to settle down to the calm enjoyment of his pension. No sooner does his case go through the Pension Office than he gets a no tice from an agent — mind, from an agent at Washington, the capital of the country — saying that the agent has ex amined his case and believes that he is entitled to more. The pensioner puts in an application for an increase and grows impatient because he does not hear from it. In this way the pension ers are kept in a continual state of un rest. BISMARCK'S STRANGE DUEL. A duel in which Bismarck was once ■ engaged had a very amusing origin. It I occurred when he was chief secretary j of the Prussian Legation at Frankfurt. of the recruit, as to hereditary diseases in his family, etc. C The medical examination on muster-C ing cut will be final as to a soldier who( may subsequently ask a pension on ac- count of disability incurred in the ser vice. If a soldier contracts the grip^ in Cuba and has a recurrent attackC ■when the war is over, it will be re-( garded as a new cape of grip, that is, all. * There was no examination of the men mustered out at the end of the CivilC War. The result of this neglect wasg that millions have been spent by the- Government investigating the cases of* 1 men who have claimed that their deaf-C ness or blindness o-r lameness or chronicfi disease was due to exposure while theyg were in the servi.e. No doubt most "f these claims were made in good faith, and the men who were, unable to trace' their physical troubles back to the warC have felt aggrieved. £ ' The precautions which the surs»'nn-£ general's office is planning to tak<* will provide against this injustice, and at* the same time protect the Government from willful or unconscious fraud. He went much into society, and one Christmas attended a big ball. During the height of the festivities Bismarck's attention was directed to an exceeding ly pompous individual who strutted about the room. This was a M. de Clancy, a noted French duelist. Later on this important individual took part in a dance, but, having omitted to leave his hat at the proper place, had per THE SPANISH SOLDIER AS A FIGHTER By R. SCALLAN, Late Lieut. of Royal Artilery THE Spanish soldier, as described by those who have seen him in his den, is a small, lissom, al- j most puny being, and presents a picture the reverse of inspiriting. \ As he slouches along on trie march, un- ■ kempt, unshorn and tatterdemalion, -the , sight of him in the ranks would break j the heart of an English or German j martinet— than \vh9m there is no great er stickler for form and appearance on j the face of this earth, or at least the writer has never seen a greater. But to come back to our Spaniard huge hempen sandals encase his often j soekless feet, his trousers are frayed and threadbare, his ill-fitting tunic hangs limp and loose for want of but tons here and there and his cap, if he boasts one, is flung carelessly on the back of his head. Huge woolen gloves of a bright green hue, and sadly in need if darning, endeavor to conceal the scanty length of the tunic sleeves, but two or three inches of a brown sinewy arm insist on peeping forth at the least exertion. His rifle is carried anyhow — sometimes at the trail, sometimes at the slope, and often slung behind his back, but always in a different position to that of his neighbor in the ranks. The order is invariably a straggle and the formation is more easily gxiessed at than identified by one accustomed to the sharp, quick movements and straight serried ranks of more discip lined troops. '. Yet withal the Spanish soldier is a good fighter when brought to bay, as many a bloody field has attested. In guerrilla warfare his fame is pre-emin ent, and amidst the greatest privations, he bears his hard lot cheerfully and uncomplainingly. Notwithstanding his ' force to hold it out almost at arm's length while he danced. The specta cle tickled Bismarck immensely, and, as the Frenchman came sailing majes tically along, Bismarck . stepped for ward and dropped a coin into the hat. A duel was one of the next day's events. Though it was with pistols, Bismarck escaped unhurt, while his adversary was wounded. shuffling gait he seems never to tire or* the march, and in brief is In many re spects a worthy and dangerous foe. On the field of Igualada, one of the fiercest fights of the late Carlist war, a loyal regiment that had no choice be tween annihilation and surrender un hesitatingly chose the former and al lowed itself to be mercilessly butch ered, though not without rendering a good account of the enemy, whose vic tory was purchased at an enormous sacrifice. In the matter of food the Peninsular soldier is easily satisfied and no great charge on the commissariat. Two meals a day suffice him, and those are scanty enough. In some "smart" corps coffee and soup are allowed early in the morning, but the average soldier feeds only at 9 a. m. and again at 5 p. m. One and a half pounds of bread, and black at that, is the entire ration al lowed per day by the Government. Any additional luxuries (save the mark:) must be purchased out of his own pocket at the regimental canteen, which is kept by a civilian, though the prices are kept within reasonable bounds by a regimental committee. The private eats little or no meat, es pecially when on active service, and to this is" attributed the wonderful recu perative power of Spanish soldiers, their wounds healing extremely easily and rapidly. On the march our Don is satisfied with a chunk of dry black bread, a little oil and a clove or two of garlic, the whole washed down by a modest allowance of water. Truly a fighting ration that the American soldier would find it hard to stomach! No wonder the typical Span lard is lean and evil smelling and un wholesome lookine! If two tuning forks of the samp pitch are placed faring; each other the one sounduip, the other silent, in a few sec onds the silent one will be giving out a distinctly audible note.