USS Concord, Spanish American War Discharge – USS Concord, Battle of Manila Bay War Prize for Don Juan de Austria, Archieve of John Henry Whiteley, Discharge from USS Baltimore; 1898 Detroit, Michigan Illustrated Photo of Sailors Who Fought In Spanish American War; War Documents & Pension Records


This is the only photo I have of John Henry Whiteley of Detroit Michigan. It is actually a newspaper article with an illustration of him and other Michigan & Detroit natives that fought at the Battle of Manila Bay with Dewey.  It list the ships they were on and a little history of their life. John Henry was  born in Fruitport, Michigan and was 18 yrs old at time of enlistment. He served on the USS Concord and later on fighting the Philippine insurrection where he was wounded.

These first four photo is of a letter that John H. Whiteley wrote the government because he was treated like baggage on his trip to the Naval hospital from injuries sustained in fighting the insurrection in the Philippine Islands. From his letter you can feel his disappointment with the way he was treated.

Document below is dated US Naval Hospital; Yokohama, Japan; Nov. 19th, 1899

Sir, I respectfully request to be reimbursed $10, Ten Dollars, gold. This amount having been paid out by me, in excess of Steerage Passage allowed me, on passage from Manila, P.I. to Yokohama, Japan, November 7th to 18th 1899. My orders requiring me to report at U.S. Naval Hospital Yokohama, Japan. The accommodations furnished me being in the forehold of the ship among Coolies, and the food unpalatable to a man in my condition. I therefore had to purchase at my own expense food and accommodation, to which I was entitled to under the law. But not furnished me when transferred.

Respectfully, J. H. Whiteley, O.S. U.S.N.

This letter was witness by F. Stevens, Chief Yeoman, WSN; William S. Chapman, Private, U.S.M.C.; T.J. Devine, G.M. 3rd Company

Letter asking for reimbursement for expense

Document below is dated October 3, 1904; Washington, D.C.; Treasury Department.; Document 17903 T.G.H.E.S.S.; Office of Auditor Navy Department

Sir: Your claim for prize money for the capture of the Don Juan de Austria by the USS Concord has been settled and the sum of $87.73 allowed, a warrant for which will be issued and mailed to your address. If the warrant does not reach you in thirty days, you can address the Treasurer of the United States, Washington, D.C., regarding the matter. Your discharge is herewith returned.
Respectfully AWA Brown, Auditor; Claimant $87.73

Document below is a newspaper article from the Evening Journal, May 1898, headlined: MEN WHO FOUGHT WITH DEWEY, A GROUP OF MANILA HEROES WHO HAIL FROM DETROIT AND MICHIGAN
John Whitely, on the Concord, John Whitely, seaman on the Concord, is a Michigan boy. he was born 18 years ago in Fruitport., Barry county, where his mother lives. He enlisted at Milwaukee last August, and was sent to the receiving ship at the Brooklyn Navy yard. From there he was assigned to the Concord
Geo. N. Hayward on the Baltimore, George N. Hayward, ensign on the Baltimore, now with Dewey’s fleet, is a nephew of Mrs. John S. Gray of this city and is well known to Detroit boys, especially the athletes and D.A.C. clubmen with whom he played football. Mr. Hayward’s father was the late Capt. George W. Hayward of the United States navy. The ensign is a graduate of Annapolis, and a thorough athlete. He was captain of the Annapolis football team during his last year at the college.

Document below is dated October 3, 1904; Washington, D.C.; Treasury Department.; Document 17903 T.G.H.E.S.S.; Office of Auditor Navy Department

Sir: This Office has credited you with $45.24 bounty for destruction of enemy’s vessels, judgment Court of Claims, No. 1 Manila. A warrant for which will be issued and mailed to your address. If the above does not reach you in thirty days after the receipt of this letter, you can address the Treasurer of the United States, Washington, D.C., regarding the matter.
Respectfully AWA Brown, Auditor; Claimant $40.72, Attorneys, $4.52

The following document was John Henry Whiteley Bureau of Pensions Certificate No. 35369 War With Spain Navy; No. 35368; Increase; United States of America, Department of the Interior; Bureau of Pensions
It is hereby certified That in conformity with the laws of the United States, John Henry Whiteley who was an Ordinary Seaman USS Concord is entitled to a pension at the rate of Ten dollars per month, to commence on the twentieth day of October one thousand nine hundred and nine This pension being for : “Disease of left leg”
Given at the Department of the Interior this Twenty seventh day of November one thousand nine hundred and nine and of the Independence of the united States of America the one hundred and thirty-fourth; RA Balluegson, Secretary of the Interior, Countersigned J.L. Davenfort, Commissioner of Pensions
Along edge: Former payments covering any portion of the same time to be deducted

The following document is from the Navy  Bureau of Pensions dated May 1, 1926 showing breakdown of what he would receive and the increases over a period of four years.

The following document shows his Honorable Discharge from the United States Navy.  The discharge is signed by James M. Forsyth, Captain, USS Baltimore.  The back of certificate shows his enlistment record signed by William G. Cutler,  and E.B. Rogers Paymaster.  It is also signed by the medical officer but I cannot make out the signature

Above and below is his discharge and an etching of the ship USS Baltimore. The document has held up pretty good for 110 years. From the way it is folded it is apparent he carried the document in his wallet proudly as his proof of his service on the USS Concord.  He might have not left a verbal transcript of his service but items such as this  have always intrigued me as they are the only witness to history. it is apparent he was very proud to carry this folded paper; I only wish there was a photograph of him. would loved to have found a letter describing that moment through his eyes.  I am so thankful that these little pieces of his life exist and should they ever be destroyed he will not be denied his service and witness to history.
 
Below is his enlistment record. Shows that he enlisted on August 29, 1897 at  Milwaukee for 3 years. It says that he had previous naval service; served apprenticeship; seaman gunner; Trade, Mariner; Citizenship US; Ratings held during enlistment, O.S.; proficiency in rating, 4; seamanship, 4; ordnance, 4; Marksmanship with Small arms, 4; Signaling, 3; Sobriety, 5; Obedience, 4.5; Average standing for term of enlistment, Very Good’ Signed William G. Cutler, Lt. Commander U.S.N., and Executive Officer.
Descriptive list:
Where born: Owosso, Michigan; Date, July 16, 1879; Age 21 years 2 months; Height, 5 feet 6 3/inches; Weight, 133 lbs.; Eyes, Brown; Hair, Brown, Complexion, Ruddy; Personal Characteristics, marks, etc. Scar base C. in two fingers, Flat feet; Percentage sick during enlistment, 1+; Signed Medical Officer, Alvin Morris, USN???; I hereby certify that the above  named JH Whiteley has been paid Twenty Six dollars and eighteen cents in full to date, Pay per month at date of discharge, $19.00, Sep 26, 1900 Signature of Paymaster, EB Rogers
 
 
 
 
 
 
This is his middle school certificate showing his promotion from seventh grade to eight grade; from the high grades he received, he was a pretty sharp student and very intelligent.
 
Below is John Whitely certificate of promotion for Fruitport Muskegon County issued from school district Number Three with date of promotion dated June 1st, 1897.  His teacher name was Frank F. Bowles.
 

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One Response to USS Concord, Spanish American War Discharge – USS Concord, Battle of Manila Bay War Prize for Don Juan de Austria, Archieve of John Henry Whiteley, Discharge from USS Baltimore; 1898 Detroit, Michigan Illustrated Photo of Sailors Who Fought In Spanish American War; War Documents & Pension Records

  1. Keith Nickol says:

    Thank you for the very interesting site. I collect postcards, postal history and ephemera of the Spanish American War

    Like

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