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PC27.11.02   gould

INVENTORY OF PC-DOCS, THRU 1927

24.02.18 BOURKE
24,03,24 BIRNBAUMER
27.05.19 CHAPPELL
27.06.07 SWANSON
27.06.22 RICHAL
27.07.16 HATFIELD
27.07.20 HATFIELD
27.07.28 HATFIELD
27.08.12 FLOYD
27.08.18 BRUCE
27.09.04 O'SHEA
27.09.05 MCQUADE
27.09.08 CHAPPELL
27.09.20 KENYON
27.09.22 PEARD
27.10.12 O'SHEA
27.10.18 SATTERFIELD
27.11.02 CHAPPELL
27.11.02 GOULD
27.11.06 PEARD
27.11.07 BELLINGER
27.11.10 KEIMLING
27.11.11 BROWN
27.11.12 HARBAUGH
27.11.13 CRUM
27.11.14 DARNELL
27.11.19 WELLS
27.11.20 BELLINGER
27.11.26 KEIMLING
27.12.06 PEARD
27.12.07 BROWN
27.12.11 BROWN
27.12.11 KEIMLING
27.12.11 HARBAUGH
27.12.15 BROWN
27.12.17 CRONMILLER
27.12.18 MARTIN
27.12.19 WELLS
27.12.31 GOULD

27.11.02.   Gould, Operations Report, Quilalí Area

P C - D O C S :      P A T R O L   &   C O M B A T    R E P O R T S
thru 1927 1928 1929 1930 1931 1932 1933 +

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JICARO, NICARAGUA. 2 November 1927

From:

Patrol Commander, Quilali Patrol.

To:

The Commanding Officer, Fifth Regiment

Subject:

Operations Report.

Reference:

(a) Orders CO 3rd Bn, 5th Regt, Matagalpa dated 15 Oct 1927.

[b-e:  radio references Oct. 11-15 from Gulick]

   1.   In accordance with reference (a) a patrol consisting of 1 officer, 25 enlisted marines, 1 hospital corpsman USN, 3 officers and 40 enlisted Guardia, mounted with a total of 119 animals, left Matagalpa at 1100 on Oct 18, 1927, and camped successfully at the following places: El Eden, 10 miles N of Matagalpa on the Jinotega road, Oct 18; Jinotega, Oct 19; Caso Real, Oct 20; Embocadero, Oct 21; Guale, Oct 22; Cierra La Breyera, Oct. 23; Las Piedras, south of EL Rio Coco and three miles W of Santa Cruz, Oct 24, at 1130. Oct 24, plane dropped a letter of instructions and reconnaissance report. At 1030 Oct 25, cleared Las Piedras, crossing Rio Coco at point 1000 yards W of Las Piedras. At 1045, plane dropped modified letter of instructions also map and mosaic showing scene of the crash. Crossed the Jicaro River at 1600 arriving at Cierra La Compana at 1700 where patrol camped for the night. At 0900 Oct 26, cleared Cierra La Compana arriving at Mata Guineo at 1700 where patrol camped for the night. Passed through Quilali at 1300. Sighted planes at 1045. Requested information as to the location of the wreck and messages dropped stating that we were on the south side of the ravine in which the plain fell and that we were 2 miles to the E of it. Left for the scene of the crash at 1100. Sighted planes at 1400 while on the N side of the ravine headed W and received information that Lt. Chappell was being attacked by bandits to his N and S 3 miles W of our position. In order to reach Lt. Chappell it was necessary to cross an almost impassable ravine. Due to the steep slope of the ravine it was not crossed until 1700 at which time all firing had ceased which made it impossible to effect a junction with Chappell that night. It was believed that we were within 1000 yds NE of Chappell when we deployed and took position on the ridge which we believed to be occupied by the bandits to the N of Chappell. [p. 2]

At 0930 the following day, we left the position that we held during the night and proceeded in the direction of Chappell's position arriving there at 1300. At 0930 plane dropped message giving the exact location of Chappell and advising that Lt. Chappell would be informed of the probable time of our arrival. The mountains, ravines, and heavy underbrush in the vicinity of Lt. Chappell's position combined with the lack of knowledge of the trails made the junctive [junction] with Chappell a very trying and difficult task. A task, which without the aid of the planes, would have been near to the impossible. Upon joining Chappell we found that his animals had not been watered for some time. A patrol was sent out to cover the watering of the animals. The patrol was fired on from to the SE. The bandits were driven back after a skirmish of not more than 5 minutes. The combined patrol remained in the same position during the following day, Oct 29, to afford the animals a long needed rest. At 0900, Oct 30, cleared defensive position for the scene of the wreck, arriving there at the S side of the ravine, opposite the field where the plane fell at 1030. The train under a strong guard was left on the road S of the ravine and with 50 men I proceeded to the scene of the wreck arriving on the field at 1150. Inspected the plane and found the motor and all metal parts intact. The machine guns were missing; also all parts that could be destroyed by fire. The houses in the vicinity were searched and found to be occupied but temporarily deserted. Planes were sighted at 1030 and at our request dropped several bombs on the houses and a banana patch to the N of the ravine. One plane circled the field of the crash for about 30 minutes while we were inspecting the wreck. At 1300 we rejoined the train and left for the banks of the Jicaro river. Arriving at a point 2 miles N of Quilali at 1615 where we camped for the night. 1000 Oct 31, cleared hill two miles N of Quilali. At 0630 sent patrol consisting of 1 officer and 15 men to reconnoiter the E bank of the Jicaro. This patrol returned and joined the main body at 1000 after having searched all houses along its path and without having encountered either inhabitants or enemy forces. At 1130 passed thru Quilali where planes were sighted. At 1700 arrived at Jicarito where we camped for the night. Cleared Jicarito 0915 Nov 1; At 1030 Nov 1, we made contact with a bandit force of about 250 men on the road near Espino, six miles SE of Jicaro. We engaged them for 35 minutes. Marine casualties, one private, suffered slight injury on left elbow caused by fragment of dynamite bomb, Guardia casualties, two privates, both killed by rifle fire. One mulero was seriously wounded in the chest by rifle fire. Six mules were killed by fire on the scene of this action. The enemy [p. 3]

casualties are estimated at 60 dead and wounded. The 2 Guardia dead were brought to Jicaro and buried in the cemetery at that place. The wounded mulero is receiving treatment in the Marine Hospital at Jicaro.

   2.    This attack was of the nature of a well planned ambush but it fell short of the success which the bandits had hoped for, first; because the main body took a slightly higher trail than the bandits had planned on and second, because of the promptness and energy with which our forces returned a withering and accurate fire. The bandits attempted to hold their places both with their rifle and with dynamite bombs but our grenades and rifles dislodged them after which they were followed up with all the weapons with which we were armed. One of the bandits killed was identified as Morsal Solar of Jimyco, a colonel in Sandino's band. The number of enemy engaged in this action is estimated from the volume of their fire and from the front over which they were deployed. At a point about 3 miles from Jicaro the point of the advanced guard located a group of about 12 men in a position behind logs with a Lewis Gun, at a distance of about 150 yards ahead. A short skirmish brushed away this group with no known casualties on either side. The patrol arrived at Jicaro at 1600. Every effort has been made by this patrol to obtain information as to the fate of the lost aviators. No inhabitants were encountered in the entire area from Quilali to Jicarito, except the armed bands with whom we made contact. In no case was it possible to take prisoners. It is not believed that the missing aviators made a stand or engaged in a fight in any of the houses near the scene of the crash. These houses were examined carefully for signs of a stand and for bullet holes but none were found. In every instance of action and every case of obstacles to be overcome, the Guardia attached to my command fought and worked with outstanding courage and energy. They proved themselves cheerful and willing in face of trying hardships and were ever eager to close with the enemy when encountered. Throughout the movements and actions of this patrol in enemy territory the assistance rendered by aviation has been invaluable. The information received from the planes was in every case accurate, useful and of the greatest importance to the intelligent conduct of this patrol.
 
- - - M. J. Gould. - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
      1st Lt. USMC.
      Commanding Quilali Patrol.

NA127/43A/3

Summary & Notes:

   A gripping & vividly detailed report of the Marines' continuing their search for the plane wreckage in mountains north of Quilalí, which Gould's patrol finds for the first time.  Needs to be read together with Chappell's & Peard's reports.

   Long march from Matagalpa — takes a full week to get to the Río Coco (Oct. 18-25).  In the field for 15 days, fight their way to El Jícaro on 1 Nov.  A big patrol — 70 men, 119 animals.  Must have made a huge racket wending its way through the mountains into unknown territory.

   A major absence here:  no scouts, no guides, no native support except some hired muleros and 40 native Guardia.  Intelligence abysmal marked by "lack of knowledge of the trails" & most everything else about the land & its people.  Made them very vulnerable & utterly dependent on airplanes for supplies & information.

   Patterns of violence against campesinos and of campesino support for Sandino:  searching houses, "occupied but temporarily deserted" and bombing at least some houses that had no apparent connection to the downing of the plane or the killing of the aviators except their proximity across a ravine.
   One major combat with est. 250 rebels (Nov 1) — 1 Marine wounded, 2 native Guardia killed.

P C - D O C S :      P A T R O L   &   C O M B A T    R E P O R T S
thru 1927 1928 1929 1930 1931 1932 1933 +

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