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Chapter XXXIX

Books and Documents > Medical Department of the U.S. Army in the World War, Volume III, Finance & Supply

CHAPTER XXXIX

VETERINARY EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES

By the act of June 3, 1916, the Veterinary Corps was created, and by the terms of the act made a part of the Medical Department.1 Thereafter the storage and issue of veterinary supplies which previously had been a function of the Quartermaster Department, devolved upon the Medical Department. The act making the appropriations for the Military Establishment for the fiscal year 1917 had already been passed when the act of June 3, 1916, became a law. Such funds as had been appropriated for the procurement of veterinary supplies were necessarily granted to the Quartermaster instead of to the Medical Department. Following that legislation, the Surgeon General requested authority to include provisions in the Medical and Hospital Department estimates for the fiscal year 1918 for the purchase of veterinary supplies.2 The request was approved by the Secrerary of War September 8, 1916. The estimates were submitted by the Surgeon General September 13, 1916, accompanied by a proposed amendment to incorporate in the act under the title “Medical and Hospital Department” the phrase “for the purchase of veterinary supplies.” It had been the custom of the Quartermaster General to base his estimates for veterinary supplies at $1 per head within the United States; at $1.20 per head in the insular possessions for all animals for which treatment at public expense was authorized. The estimates for the Medical Department for the fiscal year 1918 followed this custom and included therein the item, “Veterinary medicines and supplies, at one dollar per animal, a function to be newly devolved upon the Medical Department beginning July 1, 1917, if these estimates are confirmed, approximately 70,000 animals * * * $70,000.” 3

The Surgeon General submitted to the House Military Committee, at a hearing January 9, 1917, the following reasons for the introduction of the new language and the estimates:3

The appropriations for the Quartermaster Corps (incidental expenses) have heretofore provided for the purchase of medicines for horses and mules. A large proportion of these medicines are identical with medicines habitually carried in stock in the depots of the Medical Department. Those not so carried are similar to the medicines purchased by the Medical Department and subject to similar tests. On the supposition that the Medical Department could better procure and test the veterinary medicines required in the Army, an arrangement was sanctioned by the Secretary of War a few years ago by which such supplies thereof as were in the Medical Department stock should be issued on quartermaster requisitions (the appropriations concerned being subsequently adjusted by proper action), and those not so in stock should, when that course was convenient, be purchased by Medical Department agencies on quartermaster account. This procedure, while it has been attended with satisfactory results as to prices and qualities, has involved considerable accounting routine which could profitably be avoided. So long as the veterinary service of the Army was either regimental or quartermaster there was some reason for leaving the procurement


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of veterinary supplies technically in the hands of the Quartermaster Corps. Now, however, that the Veterinary Corps, established by the national defense act of June 3, 1916, has been made a part of the Medical Department it is the view of the War Department upon full consideration that it will promote military efficiency to transfer to the Medical Department the duty of procuring veterinary supplies, so as to concentrate control of the veterinary service, as well as responsibility for it, under the Surgeon General. Accordingly the current estimates for the Quartermaster Corps have, it is understood, omitted the provision heretofore appearing for the purchase of medicines for horses and mules, and in lieu thereof a new provision is submitted in the medical and hospital estimates “for the purchase of veterinary supplies.”

General Orders, No. 115, War Department, August 28, 1911, promulgating the veterinary supply table for the Army, fixed the money allowance at $1 a year for each animal within the continental limits of the United States and $1.20 a year for each animal in tropical climates outside the United States. At the present juncture there are forty-odd thousand animals pertaining to the Regular Army and in the neighborhood of 50,000 with the National Guard. It is presumed that 70,000 at least will be on hand under Federal care during the fiscal year 1918, for which veterinary supplies will have to be provided. Such provision, at the moderate rate of $1 a year for each animal, constitutes item 3 above.

The phraseology of the appropriation under the title “Medical and Hospital Department,” in the act of May 12, 1917, included as a new item the words: “For the purchase of veterinary supplies and hire of veterinary surgeons.”

While the regular estimates, Medical and Hospital Department, for the fiscal year 1918 were pending before Congress the Surgeon General, under instructions from the Secretary of War, submitted, on March 31, 1917, a supplemental or deficiency estimate for the fiscal year ended June 30, 1917, in the total sum of $24,780,000. The early declaration of war was then in prospect and that sum was required not merely for the fiscal year 1917, but also for the fiscal year 1918, to be, however, “immediately available.” It included an item, “veterinary supplies, 1918, at $1 per animal * * * $616,178.”

The item $616,178 for veterinary supplies, animal strength of 616,178 was distributed as follows: Regular Army in service, 95,502; Regular Army for 4 increments, 38,820; for National Guard, 202,462; for Volunteers, 279,394. In succeeding estimates the sums included for veterinary supplies were based upon the computed cost of the quantities of supplies required instead of at a fixed rate per animal.

The urgent deficiency appropriation, making available for immediate use funds for the procurement of veterinary supplies by the Medical Department, was not approved until June 15, 1917.4 It accordingly became necessary to make some arrangement for supplies to cover the interval between that date and the time that the supplies could actually be delivered. It was known to the Surgeon General that a considerable quantity of veterinary supplies was on hand at different quartermaster supply depots and that extensive procurement of such supplies for the Quartermaster Corps was in progress at the medical supply depot at St. Louis, Mo. Since these supplies would serve a useful purpose in bridging the interval, efforts immediately were made by the Surgeon General to gain control of them. Instructions were issued later for the transfer of supplies at the El Paso and San Antonio depots to the medical supply depot at San Antonio, and those at Atlanta to the medical supply depot in that city. On August 22, 1917, these instructions were confirmed by an order from the War Department, as follows:5


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I. All veterinary instruments, books, medicines, and supplies for the treatment of public animals and authorized private horses of mounted officers at posts, stations, or depots will be transferred as soon as practicable by the Quartermaster Corps to the Medical Department, and will be taken up and accounted for on the returns of the latter department, as medical property. At depots or other places where there is no officer of the Medical Department on duty, request will be made to The Adjutant General of the Army to designate an officer to receive and receipt for such report.

It was feared that even this measure would be inadequate to provide a sufficient quantity of veterinary equipment to meet the immediate needs of the camps until deliveries on orders had been received. This related particularly to articles of surgical equipment. It was anticipated that many of the veterinary surgeons called into service would have articles of equipment which could be utilized in the military service and might be willing to part with them for a consideration. In order that such articles of equipment might be secured, the following instructions were issued by the Surgeon General, May 5, 1917, to newly appointed veterinary officers: 6

The commercial sources of supply for veterinary apparatus arc, it is learned, near exhaustion, and for some months to come it will be quite impossible to procure therefrom the veterinary outfits that will be needed by veterinary officers coming into the military service.

In view of this situation the Secretary of War has authorized the Medical Department to invite veterinary officers who are newly entering the military service during the present emergency to bring with them such parts of their own private outfits, in good condition, as are designated on the annexed list, with the understanding that the Medical Department will purchase them subject to a reasonable discount from original cost for depreciation due to previous use.

A veterinary officer complying with this invitation will be expected to assume the cost of transporting the articles from his home to the point where he reports for duty, and the cost of transporting back again the articles which are not accepted by the Medical Department as indicated below.

Upon reporting for duty the comnmnamiding officer of the orgamsization to which the veterinarian is assigned will appoint a board of officers to inspect the apparatus which the veterinarian has brought with him, to determine its condition and suitability for military service, and to appraise the value of the portion found to be in good condition and suitable (considering as an element of present value the original cost thereof, the usual period of durability, the period during which it has been used, and the cost of transporting or delivering it at the station of duty). Upon report of these findings, voucher for the purchase of acceptable apparatus will in due season be executed and payment made therefor, whereupon title to them will pass to the United States.

Additional equipments not so provided must be procured on requisition through the regular channels of Medical Department supply. A veterinary officer newly reporting for military service should make it his first duty to learn what additional veterinary equipments and supplies will be needed in his work, and should forward timely requisition therefor through the surgeon of the organization or command to which he is assigned. To that end he should acquaint himself particularly with the general regulations governing requisitions in the Medical Department, paragraphs 476 to 490 of the Manual therefor, of which the surgeon should have a copy.

In cases of great emergency, when absolutely necessary medicines are not on hand and time does not permit of awaiting their supply on requisition, the veterinary officer may request the surgeon of the command to purchase locally under the provisions of paragraph 476


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LIST OF ARTICLES DESIRED

Pocket or operating case, including trocar and canula ................................1
Hypodermic syringe with extra needles ......................................................... 1
Hoof case, 3 knives............................................................................................ 1
Hypodermic tablet case, equipped.................................................................. 1
Set casting harness, preferably web construction ....................................... 1
Hoof tester .......................................................................................................... 1
Month speculum................................................................................................. 1
Set of dental floats with extra blades............................................................... 1


The records of the Surgeon General’s Office fail to show that any considerable number of instruments were secured in this manner. However, utilizing the old types of instruments and cases received from the several depot quartermasters, no material inconvenience resulted.

DEVELOPMENT OF A VETERINARY SUPPLY TABLE

When war had been declared, a list of articles with probable quantities to be purchased became at once necessary. Such a list was compiled by the supply division with the advice and assistance of an experienced veterinary officer. This list, except for instruments and appliances, was submitted to the chairman of the commission on pharmaceuticals acting in conjunction with the Council of National Defence, on April 19, 1917.7 The committee suggested the quantities which could be supplied without affecting the trade.

Further work on the supply table was resumed in May and a tentative list compiled. The quantities to be purchased as initial supply were calculated. Instrument cases were developed and general specifications for them prepared during the following months. Samples of these cases were ordered and examined, and changes effected. The final determination of the contents of these cases was delayed because the samples forwarded by express had gone astray and could not be located. Following this, a list of articles and quantities to be issued as initial supply to the training camps was compiled.

A formal supply table showing articles and quantities allowed was prepared and distributed in the fall of 1917. It was published officially in Changes No. 4, Manual for the Medical Department, 1918. This table, in turn, was subjected to intensive study, and was revised in February, 1918. The system observed by the veterinary service of the British Army received consideration and was largely followed in the new supply table. The veterinary supply table. as finally revised, appears below. In it the unit system of the Medical Department as provided for other units was applied to the Veterinary Corps.

Veterinary supply table, 1918: FORMULAE OF NONOFFICIAL COMPOUND MEDICINAL PREPARATIONS, LISTED IN THE SUPPLY TABLES


633

List of veterinary supplies


634

List of veterinary supplies - continued


635

List of veterinary supplies - continued


636

List of veterinary supplies - continued


637

List of veterinary supplies - continued


638

List of veterinary supplies - continued


639

List of veterinary supplies - continued


640

List of veterinary supplies - continued

Equipments of veterinary units


641

Equipments of veterinary units - continued


642

Equipments of veterinary units - continued


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Equipments of veterinary units - continued

Individual equipment was provided for veterinary officers and for enlistedmen in the form of a wallet, veterinary officer's, and a wallet, farrier's.  The field equipment was carried in the chest, veterinary officer's, and chest, veterinary field unit.  Some additional equipment for the divisional mobile veterinary serction was carried in two pack-mule boxes.  A division veterinarian's office equipment was provided.  The divisional veterinary units were expected to have their complete equipments with them when they left for overseas service.  The veterinary field equipment of a division included the following articles: 8

Chests:



 

Veterinary field unit

number

13

 

Veterinary officer's

do

12

Desk, field, veterinarian's, No. 1

do

1

Wallets:



Farrier's

do

20

Veterinary officer's

number

12

Boxes, pack-mule

do

2

Saddle, pack

do

1

Division veterinarian's office equipment

do

1


PLAN OF PROCUREMENT AND DISTRIBUTION

In the general pian for the procurement and distribution of supplies required by the Medical Department, veterinary supplies were assigned by the Surgeon General to the medical supply depot at St. Louis, Mo. This decision of the Surgeon General was reached very early, and the following information was furnished the officer in charge of that depot, April 21, 1917: 9

1. It is probable that the pending Army bill will transfer the purchase of veterinary supplies to the Medical Department, in which case it is contemplated that the purchase and distribution of these articles shall be assigned to the St. Louis depot. An effort will be made to obtain a suitable veterinary surgeon to assist you in this work, as indicated in Supply No. 685.


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2. Some time ago a board of veterinarians was appointed upon the request of this office to meet in the Southern Department for the purpose of preparing a veterinary supply table.

3. I am sending you herewith a preliminary list of veterinary supplies that are under consideration. This is by no means the final supply table and is sent to you merely that you may have some idea of what is contemplated. The bill has not yet been passed assigning this purchase to the Medical Department, nor are funds available. The final veterinary supply table has not yet been acted upon.

4. The inclosed list was suggested by Mr. Frank Ryan, president of Parke, Davis & Co. (who is acting in conjunction with the Council of National Defense), as amounts which the drug firms might be asked to supply at one time.

*  *  *  *  *  *

After the tentative supply table had been developed and the quantities to be purchased had been determined, the following instructions were issued to the officer in charge of the medical supply depot at St. Louis: 10

1. Inclosed herewith is a tentative estimate of a quantity of veterinary supplies for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1918. It is contemplated that these supplies be purchased in six increments at intervals of one month.

2. It is desired that the committees on pharmaceuticals, surgical instruments, and surgical dressings be advised of your probable requirements at the earliest practicable date.* * *

3. These committees will inform you of the manufacturers who can supply these articles and the quantity allotted to each, as well as the rate of production which may be expected.

4. The veterinary panniers have not yet been decided upon, and instructions covering their purchase and issue will be sent you at a later date.

The quantities on the tentative list were somewhat in excess of those recommended by the committee on pharmaceuticals on April 19.7 The instructions to divide the quantities into six parts and make purchase of one part at successive intervals had been based on the recommendation of the committee to purchase pharmaceuticals in smaller quantities at intervals of two months. The instructions were modified later to procure one-sixth of the medicine and one-third of the remaining articles on a 10-day circular at intervals of 2 months.11 These instructions were amended later, in so far as they related to surgical instruments and appliances, to direct that the full quantity of each article be furnished the committees on surgical instruments and surgical dressings and that awards and recommendations be had from those committees for the awards and the distribution of the contract.12 Orders for medicines and miscellaneous articles were placed in July, but orders for instruments could not be placed until the contents of the standard cases had finally been determined. In subsequent purchases of veterinary supplies the customary routine of procurement was observed.

The first circular proposal for bids for the purchase of supplies, authorized May 21, 1918, contained 143 items, of which 75 were medicines; 5, surgical dressings; 6, cases of instruments; 8, surgical appliances; 1, thermometers; 48, miscellaneous. The circular was issued at the St. Louis depot, June 15, 1917, and bids were opened June 26, 1917.13 At the suggestion of the chairman of the surgical instrument committee, the officer in charge, was advised by wire, June 29, that the surgical dressings committee would allot bandages, absorbent cotton, and adhesive plaster; that the surgical instrument committee would


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allot instrument cases, casting harness, operating hoods, razors, saddlebags, suspending slings, syringes, metal, and syringes, hypodermic; and that the committee on thermometers would allot the thermometers.14 The award on the remaining items was made by the medical supply officer, who was instructed to expedite delivery. The quantities of veterinary instruments ordered at this time were as follows:15

[Veterinary instruments]

Ten additional items of surgical instruments and operating equipment were added August 1, 1917, and the quantity of 11 items on the list of May 21, 1918, was increased. The quantity of two items was decreased.15 Orders and contracts were placed, and supplies were delivered in about the usual time; that is, medicines, enamel ware and glassware promptly, surgical dressings a little later. Surgical instruments were delivered last because they had to be manufactured at a tune when every factory was rushed with other Government orders.

For several months the stock of standard articles being insufficient to fill requisitions for veterinary supplies received from the various organizations, the nonstandard items received from the Quartermaster Corps were substituted whenever practicable. The majority of veterinary officers, who had not been in the service long enough to become familiar with the supply table, adapted themselves quite well to the unsettled conditions and prescribed the items issued them with success. It soon became evident that veterinarians at the several camp veterinary hospitals were asking for supplies in excess not only of authorized allowances but of actual needs. On account of the limited quantity of supplies available, it was necessary to limit the quantity issued to that of the allowance. Some complaint was made that the number of medicines in this standard list was inadequate; that many very essential drugs appearing in previous lists were omitted. The officers making these complaints were advised by the Surgeon General that, under the circumstances, it was more desirable to practice preventive medicine than to treat conditions after their development among animals.16 In the former case less medication was required.16

For the proper protection of sick animals, the officer in charge of the medical supply depot at New York, was directed, September 14, 1917, to purchase 60,000 horse blankets for use of the veterinary service, and to distribute


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them in certain numbers to the various camps and medical supply depots.17 This number was increased September 24, 1917, to 70,000.18 The officer in charge of the medical supply depot at New York reported January 23, 1918, that 55,455 of these blankets had been received at the camps and depots, including those sent overseas, or were then in France.19 These blankets do not appear to have been extensively used in many of the camps, whether from lack of need of them or from lack of information concerning their availability, is not known. In some instances such blankets were obtained from the Quartermaster Corps.

The second set of instructions covering the purchase of veterinary supplies was sent to the officer in charge, medical supply depot at St. Louis, February 12, 1918.20 The schedule transmitted with these instructions grouped the supplies in three classes: (1) Medicines, antiseptics, and disinfectants; (2) surgical instruments; (3) miscellaneous. The last item covered surgical dressings and other hospital equipment and supplies. The schedule gave the quantities required for one year for 250,000 animals, and the quantities which were to be purchased per quarter. The officer in charge was instructed to invite proposals quarterly for these supplies, one class at a time, and for all articles in that class, and for the full quantity to be purchased in the quarter. Bidders were to be permitted to submit quotations for one or more items of the proposal and for the whole or any part of an item, but were required to state the rate of delivery and the total quantity they would undertake to deliver without fail within 90 days from date of award. Awards were to be made and the date and hour of opening of the bid was to be stated in all circular advertisements. These instructions contemplated the procurement of a sufficient quantity of every item on the list to bring the total quantity of that item procured since April 1, 1917, up to the quantity given in the schedule, as required for 250,000 animals for one year. The officer in charge of the medical supply depot was directed to report any item the quantity of which on the list appeared to be too low. Approximately a dozen items were so reported by the officer in charge.

The next instructions to purchase were issued in June, 1918. A different form of schedule wa.s used in stating the quantities to be purchased. It was similar to that sent to the depot at New York for the purchase of general hospital supplies. (See p.182.) The schedule gave the quantities of veterinary supplies for one division, including hospitals, required for six months. The instructions prescribed the number of times the quantities in this schedule were to be purchased.21 After the various chests had been determined, instructions were issued concerning the quantity of each type to be purchased.

In the general development of centralization of procurement of surgical instruments in the general purchasing office, Medical Department, Washington, D. C., veterinary medicines and instruments were assigned to it for purchase. As deliveries were made the accepted supplies were forwarded to the medical supply depot at St. Louis, Mo., for storage and issue. Except for the fiber chests entering into the veterinary unit equipment, an ample quantity of veterinary supplies was available at the time of signing the armistice.


647

DISTRIBUTION

Inasmuch as the authority for the Medical Department to procure and distribute veterinary supplies did not become a law until June 15, 1917,4 instructions relative to distribution of such supplies could not be issued at an earlier date. It was contemplated that all medical supply depots making distribution of supplies to the training camps would carry and issue veterinary supplies. The slowness with which these supplies were received from manufacturers and increasing demands for them at camps and overseas prevented this widespread distribution of the stock. It made necessary the distribution of all such supplies from the depot at St. Louis.9 In order that all personnel of the Medical Department concerned in the use of veterinary supplies might be informed of the manner in which they were to be obtained, the following telegram was sent on July 1, 1917, to all department surgeons:22

Supply number one thousand fifty one. Veterinary supplies and equipment will hereafter be furnished by the Medical Department. Issue on requisitions approved by the department surgeons. Use post stock so far as practicable until veterinary stock is available. Purchase articles not in stock as necessary to fill approved requisitions. Veterinary vaccines should be obtained from Army Medical School.

On the same date, the following telegram was sent to the medical supply depots distributing to troops:23

Supply number one thousand fifty. Beginning this date all veterinary supplies and equipment will be furnished by the Medical Department. A copy of the standard supply table will be forwarded as soon as available. Until received General Orders number twenty War Department February twenty sixth nineteen hundred nine will govern. Requisition should be made on Medical Department blank form number thirty five. Articles should be limited to the supply table except for satisfactory reasons. Veterinary surgeons should inventory veterinary equipmermt and supplies in their possession and forward list to this office at earliest practicable date. For the present the return of veterinary property will be made annually on form seventeen, A, B, and C.

To clear up some questions received by the officer in charge, medical supply depot, St. Louis, concerning the method of handling veterinary supplies, the following instructions were issued July 4, 1917 :24

1. Replying to your telegram of the 30th ultimno, relative to veterinary supplies, your attention is invited to the inclosed copy of correspondence between this office and the Quartermaster General relative to the transfer of veterinary supplies. Copies of the act making appropriations for the fiscal year 1918, approved May 12, and of the urgent deficiency act, approved June 15, are being forwarded under separate cover, this date. These acts both contemplate procurement and issue of veterinary supplies by the Medical Department.

2. All veterinary supplies received from the depot quartermaster should be taken up on your return of medical property under the heading “Veterinary supplies.” A copy of your acknowledgment to the depot quartermaster, St. Louis, of the receipt of these supplies should be furnished this office.

3. Veterinary supplies will, hereafter, be carried as a part of the Medical Department supplies under their proper title, “Veterinary supplies,” the same manner as dental instruments and supplies are carried in paragraphs 854 to 856, inclusive.

4. Requisitions will be prepared by veterinary surgeons on Form 35, Medical Department, and issues may be made on them when approved by department surgeons.


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5. For the present these supplies will be issued and invoiced to the proper veterinarian in like manner as supplies are issued to regimental surgeons and dental surgeons. If two veterinarians be on duty with the same organization, the property should be invoiced to the senior.

6. General authority to purchase articles not in stock to fill approved requisitions were sent you by telegraph on the 1st instant. These instructions hold until the articles listed on the tentative veterinary list, forwarded you under date of May 21, have been received. It is desired that all unusual articles on these requisitions be eliminated. It is evident that the tendency of veterinarians is to include a great many articles of undemonstrated efficacy and which might very well be dispensed with. Bacterins and vaccines for veterinary use may be obtained from the Army Medical School, this city, and mallein from the nearest branch of the Bureau of Animal Industry of the Department of Agriculture.

7. The veterinary requisitions forwarded by you have been returned approved for issue as modified, with authority to purchase.

8. All orders placed by you for veterinary supplies on behalf of the Quartermaster Department since June 15, 1917, may be paid for out of urgent deficiency appropriation for the Medical Department. Orders placed by you remaining undelivered on that date should be canceled, and new orders placed to cover them. This will obviate any question of settlement of accounts. All supplies delivered prior to June 15, on orders placed at the request of the depot quartermaster, should be paid for by the Quartermaster Department. In other words, June 15 is the dividing line between the supplies purchased by the Quartermaster Department and those purchased by the Medical Departmenit. All supplies paid for out of money pertaining to the Medical Department are to be taken up on your returns as pertaining to that department.

The telegram of July 1 to all department surgeons was supplemented by letter of instructions of July 10 accounting more clearly the particulars to be observed in the issue of veterinary supplies. Copy of these inst.ructions appear below: 25

1. In conformity with the Army appropriation act for the fiscal year 1917, approved May 17, and the urgent deficiency act, approved June 15, 1917, veterinary supplies will hereafter be furnished by the Medical Department and issued in the same manner as post, field, and dental supplies.

2. A veterinary supply table is in course of preparation and will be forwarded as soon as completed. Until its receipt, the supply table published in General Orders, No. 20, War Department, February 26, 1902, will govern both as to items and as to quantity of preparations to be asked for.

3. Requests for veterinary supplies will be made by the senior veterinarian on duty with the organization in the manner prescribed in paragraph 482, Manual for the Medical Department, 1916. These requisitions should be forwarded through the post or regimental surgeon.

4. You are authorized to approve veterinary requests for all articles on the supply table, the same as other requisitions, and to delegate this authority to division surgeons within your department under such instructions and limitations as you may deem for the best interests of the service. A stock of veterinary supplies is now being purchased by the Medical Department. As soon as this is available a sufficient quantity will be sent to the medical supply depot which has been designated to supply troops within your department. Until these supplies have been received, the officer in charge of that depot may substitute stock on hand or purchase in open market such quantities as are needed to fill requisitions.

5. Vaccines for veterinary use will be obtained from the Army Medical School, Washington, D. C., and kept in stock at the medical supply depot within your department. Commercial vaccines will not be purchased. Curative sera, the efficacy of which has been demonstrated, may be purchased by the officer ins charge of the medical supply depot on your approval, in such quantities as are required to meet the existing emergency. Requisitions should be carefully scanned that needless expense from the use of products, the efficacy of which remains to be proved, may be avoided.


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6. Returns of veterinary supplies to be rendered annually by the responsible veterinarians, in the manner prescribed in paragraph 507, Manual for the Medical Department, 1916.

7. Suggestions relative to the improvement of the veterinary service, and especially to the supplies, should be forwarded to this office.

Some difficulty was experienced for several months in disseminating information to veterinary personnel concerning the method of obtaining veterinary supplies. The camp medical supply depots carried a stock of veterinary as well as other medical supplies. It was months, however, before the remount depots and some other veterinary units fully understood that they could secure their needed supplies from that depot by the simple process of submitting a requisition for them. This may have arisen from a doubt in the mind of the camp medical supply officer concerning his responsibility for supplies for the veterinarian at the remount depot. The remount depot, while immediately adjacent to the camp, was for months an independent unit.

Because of the shortage of veterinary supplies for many months it seemed unwise to stock the distributing depots with this class of supplies. Issues were made direct from the St. Louis depot to camp supply depots and to separate stations. Issues were made on requisitions received through the prescribed channels.

Shipments of veterinary supplies to the American Expeditionary Forces in France encountered the same difficulties and delays experienced in the shipment of other classes of supplies. Delay in receipt of supplies was the principal cause in the delay in forwarding them. The St. Louis depot had the advantage of position, in that shipments could be routed with equal facility to any of the ports on the Atlantic seaboard or on the Gulf.

When the first convoy of troops sailed for France in June, 1917, the distribution of veterinary supplies was not under the control of the Medical Department, consequently none of these supplies were included in the shipment of medical supplies sent with that convoy. After the arrival of this convoy in France the need for veterinary supplies developed, and a requisition based on approximately 50,000 animals was forwarded by the chief quartermaster, A. E. F. This requisition was promptly forwarded to the medical supply depot at St. Louis, for issue. The commander in chief, A. E. F., informed The Adjutant General, September 17, 1917, that veterinary supplies were urgently needed and that none had been received in France to date.26 Reply was made to this by the Surgeon General by cable, September 21, 1917, to the effect that shipment of veterinary supplies had gone forward on the steamship the City of Savannah, and that a second shipment of 34,000 pounds was then going forward to Newport News, Va.27 The Surgeon General, a few days later, advised the surgeon, base group, A. E. F., in France, by letter, that 289 packages of veterinary supplies had already gone forward; that a second shipment weighing 34,180 pounds, occupying 1,601 cubic feet, was being loaded at Newport News; that additional shipments would be forwarded as fast as they could be secured; and that the allowance for 50,000 animals, of which these two shipments were a part, should be ample to meet the requirements.28 The veterinary supplies forwarded on the City of Savannah on October 2, 1917,


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amounted to 37,437 pounds and 1,732 cubic feet. The City of Savannah docked in France about October 17, and the officer in charge of the medical supply depot, A. E. F., reported November 7, that 216 of the 289 packages had been received and that the remainder was expected.29

In compliance with the request of the commander in chief, A. E. F., that shipment of supplies be put on an automatic basis, a list of supplies estimated as sufficient to provide for 10,000 animals for one month was compiled. There were approximately 10,000 animals per division and 10,000 was taken as the unit of supply for animals as 26,000 was for personnel. A copy of this list was furnished the officer in charge, medical supply depot at St. Louis, Mo., October 26, 1917, with instructions to ship four times that quantity in November.30 The automatic supply list for December was forwarded to the officer in charge, medical supply depot, St. Louis, December 18, 1917. 31 That for January was forwarded December 31, 1917.32 The veterinary supplies on the December automatic shipment, amounting to 535 packages, 46,000 pounds, 1,950 cubic feet, was ready for shipment December 28, 1917. 33  Under instructions from the chief of embarkation service these supplies were shipped to Mobile, Ala.34

By November 2, 1917, the fourth shipment of supplies on the requisition from France had been assembled and was ready for shipment, together with the automatic replacement for October amounting to 34,720 pounds, 1,250 cubic feet. The shipment was forwarded through Newport News.35 On November 22, 1917, another lot of veterinary supplies amounting to 119 packages, 14,580 pounds, 687 cubic feet, was ready for shipment.36 Thereafter the shipment of veterinary supplies on automatic replacement, in increasing quantities, was forwarded monthly, in accordance with instructions issued by the Surgeon General to the respective ports of embarkation and directed by the chief of embarkation service.

The quantities of supplies included in these automatic shipments increased rapidly in conformity with the number of troops overseas. In supplying the equipment required by the various organizations overseas, a constant endeavor was made to send all items contained in the supply table for the equipment of every particular organization, whether the articles were furnished by the Medical Department, the Ordnance Department, or the Quartermaster Department. For the smaller units, for example, the divison surgeon’s office, and divisional veterinary units, division veterinary mobile hospitals, the supplies were issued to the given unit before it left its station in the United States. For the larger units, such as base hospitals for 500 animals, and veterinary hospitals for 1,000 animals, the equipment was to be assembled at the port of embarkation and issued to the units at the time of embarkation.

A cablegram from the commanding general, A. E. F., October 11, 1917, called for one base veterinary hospital and six veterinary hospitals for the Line of Communications.37 Action on equipment of these organizations was delayed because at the time of receipt of the cablegram there had been no personnel of the Veterinary Corps available. This personnel had to be secured through the draft and trained. The officer in charge, finance and supply division, Surgeon General’s Office, was advised December 12, 1917, that organizations had been


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formed at Camp Devens for a veterinary hospital for 500 animals and one for 1,000 animals; that they had been reported to the chief of embarkation service as ready to sail; that the five other units requested in the cablegram would be ready to sail within a short time.38 The question of individual equipment for officers and men was raised in order that they might be properly equipped. After the lapse of considerable time the question was decided and the equipment issued. Instructions were given, January 17, 1918, for the issue of the Medical Department part of the equipment for one veterinary base hospital for 500 animals and for Veterinary Hospital No. 1 to Camp Devens; Veterinary Hospitals Nos. 2 and 6, at Camp Upton, and for Veterinary Hospitals Nos. 3, 4, and 5, at Camp Lee.39 The Quartermaster General and the Chief of Ordnance were each furnished a list of articles of their respective departments which entered into the equipment of these hospitals. They were requested to send the requisite quantities there to the commanding officers of the hospitals at their respective camps.40 A part of the equipment of these organizations was issued from the medical supply depot, New York, the latter part of January, 1918.41 Material difficulty was experienced in getting the equipment for these units, and it was not until near the end of April that they were ready to sail. Even then they did not have the entire equipment, parts of which continued to arrive at Camp Devens until May.

Not much greater success attended the organizing and equipping of the veterinary hospitals in the second phase. Information concerning the prospective organization of 5 veterinary hospitals, 1 corps mobile veterinary hospital, and 1 Army mobile veterinary hospital for the second phase was received January 30, 1918.42 The authority to organize them was not given, however, until the middle of April, and the units were organized at Camp Lee shortly thereafter. They were expected to be ready for service overseas in two months.43 Instructions were issued for the shipment of the medical part of the equipment on May 13, 1918. Requests were sent to the Quartermaster General and to the Chief of Ordnance on the same day for the shipment to Newport News of the articles pertaining to their respective departments.44

Later information indicated that these units were due to sail about July 15, 1918, and that the equipment should be ready by that time.45 The medical supply officer, Newport News, reported, June 17, 1918, that all the medical property except horse blankets, disinfectors on skids, metal stocks, and extra blades for hand dippers had been received.46 The failure to ship these articles was due to depleted stock at the St. Louis depot and to slow deliveries from contractors. All the ordnance supplies had been received except nose bags and pistols. None of the quartermaster supplies had been received.46 A subsequent report of July 1 indicated that a third of the quartermaster supplies had been received and the balance promised at an early date.47 There were still articles due July 13, 1918.48

The veterinary hospitals of the third, fourth, and fifth phases of General Pershing’s priority schedule, ordered supplied during July and August, were equipped with about the same degree of expedition. A report from the port medical supply officer, Newport News, Va., September 23, 1918, indicated that


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complete medical and ordnance equipment had been received for the hospitals of the third and fourth phases, but that the quartermaster part of the equipment had not arrived.49 The equipnient for these units had been shipped to France by the end of October,  1918.50

VETERINARY AMBULANCES

The need of veterinary ambulances with the American Expeditionary Forces called for the development of a suitable type of conveyance. Accordingly, measures were inaugurated to develop one. Prior to 1917, so far as known, no veterinary ambulance or other vehicle intended for that purpose had been purchased or used in the Army. Nor did it appear that they were in common use anywhere. A few had been designed for and were in use in State and city institutions caring for animals. It was with difficulty and after considerable delay that even a photograph of such a vehicle was obtained.

FIG. 40.- Veterinary ambulance, side view

After a suitable design for the body of the conveyance had been found, the type of chassis or running gears upon which to mount it was no less perplexing. Since the distances to be traversed were considerable, a motor chassis seemed appropriate; but the need of the floor of the body to be only a few inches from the ground in order to get the animal into it without too much of an effort disqualified the motor chassis. It was decided, finally, to construct a number of animal-drawn ambulances according to the design selected and give them a trial at the various remount depots. The type furnished for this purpose is shown in Figures 40 and 41. This ambulance, like all other animal-drawn vehicles, was supplied by the Quartermaster Corps.

The slowness of this conveyance and the limited distances which it could travel in a day with animal motive power precluded its extensive use in the


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combat zone. Efforts continued for a number of months to design a motor veterinary ambulance which would be satisfactory. Very little information was at hand concerning the type of motor veterinary ambulances used by the Allies. The commander in chief, A. E. F., reported, in April, 1918, in response to a cabled request from the Surgeon General, that working drawings and specifications of approved types of motor veterinary ambulances were not then available.51 Other work on standard motor ambulances, considered of more vital importance, prevented further consideration of motor veterinary ambulances and no design for such vehicles was developed.

FIG. 41. - Veterinary ambulance, front view

A device was developed at the motor ambulance supply depot, Louisville, Ky., for converting the horse-drawn veterinary ambulance into a trailer so that it could be towed by a motor truck. This device consisted of a V-shaped metal frame with a ring or  loop at the pointed end of the V which would fit the pintle hook of the truck. The free ends of the V were each provided with two U-bolt devices to fasten them securely to the shafts of the ambulance. One such vehicle was equipped with this device and towed behind a standard motor ambulance with a satisfactory degree of success.52 It is not known to what extent the device was used, if at all.


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A small number of the animal-drawn ambulances, shown above, reached the United States troops in France, where they were not much used except for the transportation of equipment.53

VETERINARY BIOLOGICALS

While veterinary biologicals, prophylactic and therapeutic, were on the market during the World War, the value of many of them was uncertain and remained to be proved. Very few of them were considered to have sufficient merit to justify their use. This being the case, it was decided that such vaccines as were authorized for veterinary use would be supplied by the Army Medical School. Certain curative sera, such as tetanus antitoxin, the efficacy of which had been proved, might be purchased. At that time glanders was quite prevalent throughout the United States. There was prospective need of interstate shipment of animals. Under State law and interstate commerce regulations, horses could not be shipped from one State to another without having been tested to determine whether they were suffering from glanders. In making this test mallein was commonly used. It was prepared in various forms. Some of the veterinary supply houses put it up in tablet form and sold large quantities of these tablets. The action of this preparation in tablet form was quite uncertain. Arrangements were made with the Bureau of Animal Industry, Department of Agriculture, to furnish mallein in solution in such quantities as might be required for the testing of animals purchased by the Army. The Bureau of Animal Industry was prepared and offered to make complement fixation test for glanders whenever requested to do so. Accordingly, arrangements were made whereby a definite quantity of mallein was furnished by the Bureau of Animal Industry and shipped weekly to the remount depots at the different military trainings camps. After all the animals required had been purchased, the weekly shipments were discontinued and shipments made only upon request.

The quantities of mallein required continued to increase during 1918, and while the Bureaus of Animal Industry was able to expand its facilities, it was deemed expedient to have an additional source of supply. It was also desirable that Army personnel be trained in the production of animal vaccines and bacterines. A veterinary laboratory, directly under the control and direction of the veterinary division, Surgeon General’s Office, was established at Philadelphia, Pa., in the early part of 1918. This laboratory conducted investigations relative to bacterial diseases among animals. In addition, it prepared mallein. As the facilities of the laboratory increased and the skill and technique of the personnel engaged therein improved, the quantities of mallein steadily rose. By the end of December, 1918, the laboratory was able to produce all the maflein required by the Army. The laboratory as a separate entity was discontinued at Philadelphia at the end of March, 1920, and transferred to the Army Medical School, Washington, D. C., where it became the veterinary section of the laboratory maintained at that school. The quantities of mallein produced by this laboratory were 54 January 1, 1918, to December 31, 1918, 43,500 doses; January 1, 1919, to December 31, 1919, 657,665; doses; total for the period, 701,165 doses.


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REFERENCES

(1) Act of June 3, 1916 (39 Stats. 1054).
(2) Letter from the Surgeon General to The Adjutant General, August 24, 1916. Subject: Purchase of veterinary supplies. On file, Record Room, S. G. O., 158777-H (Old Files).
(3) Memorandum of General Gorgas hearing before the House Military Committee, January 9, 1917. On file, Record Room, S. G. O., 158777-L (Old Files).
(4) Act of June 15, 1917 (40 Stats. 196).
(5) G. O., No. 113, W. D., August 22, 1917.
6) Memorandum from the Surgeon General, May 5, 1917, regarding veterinary apparatus and supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 14700-E.
(7) Letter fromn Lieut. Col. H. C. Fisher, M. C., S. G. O., to Mr. Frank Gibbs Ryan, chairman of the Committee on Pharmaceuticals, Room 953, Munitions Building, Washington, D. C., April 19, 1917, transmitting list of veterinary supplies for 650,000 for 6 months. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 14700-A.
(8) First indorsement, Surgeon General, to the Division Veterinarian, 15th Division, Camp Logan, Tex., relative to overseas equipment. On file, Finance and Supply Division,  534-127 Logan/157.  Also: Proposed changes in the Manual for the Medical Department, February 19, 1918, 750-714/732. Also: Letter from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, Mo., November 12, 1918. Subject:  Field desk No. 1. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O. 750-714/772.
(9) Letter from the Surgeon General to officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, April 21, 1917.  Subject:  Veterinary supplies.  On file, Finance and Supply Division, S.G.O., 14700-B.
(10) Letter from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, May 21, 1917. Subject: Veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division,  S. G. O., 14066-14.
(11) Second indorsement, Surgeon General, to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, Mo., June 9, 1917, relative to purchase of veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 14066-14.
(12) Telegram from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, Mo., June 20, 1917, relative to purchase of veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division. S. G. O., 14066-143.  
(14) Telegram from the Surgeon General to officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, Mo., June 29, 1917, relative to award of veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and supply Division, S. G. O., 14066-14 5.
(15) Letter from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, Mo., August 1, 1917. Subject: Supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 14066-14 12 .
(16) Correspondence between the Surgeon General anud the division veterinarian, Camp Lee, Va., April, 1918. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  531-177 Lee/190.
(17) Letter from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, New York, September 14, 1917. Subject: Horse blankets. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  713-539/128.
(18) Letter from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, New York, September 24, 1917. Subject: Horse blankets. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  713-539/128.


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(19) First indorsement, medical supply officer, New York, to the Surgeon General, January 23, 1918. Subject: Horse blankets. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 713-539 N. Y./128.
(20) Letter from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, Mo., February 12, 1918. Subject: Procurement schedule, veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Divisions, S. G. O., 713-750/182.
(21) Letter from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, Mo., June, 1917. Subject: Procurement schedule, veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  713-750 W.D./182.
(22) Telegram from the Surgeon General to department surgeons, July 1, 1917, relative to veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 14700-1 (1051).
(23) Telegram from the Surgeon General to department surgeons, July 1, 1917, relative to veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. 0., 14700-1 (1050).
(24) Letter from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, New York, July 4, 1917. Subject: Veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 14700-1.
(25) Letter from the Surgeon General to department surgeons, July 10, 1917. Subject: Veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. 0., 14700-1.
(26) Paragranh 9, Cable No.160, Headquarters, American Expeditionary Forces, Chaumont, France, to The Adjutant General, Washington, September 15, 1917, relative to veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 250/37.
(27) Cable from the Surgeon General to Bradley, chief surgeon, U. S. Army, France, September 21, 1917, relative to shipment of veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  250 F/37.
(28) First indorsement, Surgeon General, to the surgeon, Base Group and Line of Communications, A. E. F., September 25, 1917. Subject: Veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  250/37-A.
(29) Fourth indorsement, medical supply depot, France, to the chief surgeon, Line of Communications, November 7, 1917, relative to veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Divison, S. G. O., 250/37-A.
(30) Letter from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, Mo., October 26, 1917. Subject: Veterinary supplies for expeditionary forces. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 713-707/163.
(31) First indorsement, Surgeon General, to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, Mo., December 18, 1917, transmitting December automatic replacement. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 713-707 St. Louis D/163. 
(32) First indorsement, Surgeons General, to the officer in charge, Medical Supply depot, St. Louis, Mo., January 15, 1918, relative to January automatic replacement. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 713-707 St. Louis D/163.  
(33) Telegram from the medical supply officer, St. Louis, Mo., to the Surgeon General, December 28, 1917, relative to shipment of veterinary supplies for overseas. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  713-707  St. Louis D./163.
(34) Telegram from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, Mo., December 29, 1917, relative to shipment of veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 713-707  St. Louis D./163.


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(35) Telegram from the medical supply officer St. Louis, to the Surgeon General, November 2, 1917, relative to overseas shipment of veterinary supplies. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  713-707 St. Louis D./163.
(36) Telegram, medical supply officer, St. Louis, Mo., to the Surgeon General, November 22, 1917, relative to veterinary supplies for overseas shipment. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  713-707  St. Louis D./163.
(37) Par. 7, Cable No. 212, Headquarters, A. E. F., Chaumont, to The Adjutant General, October 11, 1917, relative to veterinary service. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., Cables Received Book.
(38) Memorandum from chief, Veterinary Division, S. G. O., to chief, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., December 12, 1917, relative to equipping veterinary hospitals, first phase. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  750-594/82.
(39) Letter from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, Mo., January 17, 1918. Subject: Equipment for veterinary hospitals. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  750-594/82.
(40) Letters from the Surgeon General to the Quartermaster General and the Chief of Ordnance, January 7, 1918, relative to issue of equipment to veterinary hospitals. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O. , 750-594/82 
(41) Letter from the Surgeon General to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, New York, January 17, 1918. Subject: Supplies for veterinary hospitals. On file, Finance  and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  750-594/82.
(42) Letter from the chief, Veterinary Division, S. G. O., to the officer in charge, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., January 29, 1918. Subject: Equipment for additional veterinary units to be organized. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  750-714/126.
(43) Letter from the chief, Veterinary Division, S. G. O., to officer in charge, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., April 17, 1918. Subject: Veterinary units to be organized at Camp Lee, Va. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 750-714/126.
(44) Letters from the Surgeon General to the Quartermaster General, to the Chief of Ordnance and to the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, St. Louis, Mo., May 13, 1918. Subject: Equipment for veterinary hospitals. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 750-714/126.
(45) Letters from chief, Veterinary Division, S. G. O., to the officer in charge, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., June 10, 1915. Subject: Equipment for veterinary units, second phase. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 750-714/126.
(46) Memorandum from Capt. Shelby G. Fell, to Maj. R. A. LaGrinder, June 17, 1918. Subject: Supplies ordered, invoiced and received on veterinary hospitals. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 750-714/126.
(47) Sixth indorsement, medical supply depot, Newport News; Va., to the Surgeon General, July 1, 1.918, relative to receipt of equipment for veterinary hospitals. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  750-714/126.


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(48) Memorandum from the medical supply officer, Newport News, Va., to the commanding officer, Port of Embarkation, Newport News, Va.,  June 13, 1918, relative to receipt of supplies for veterinary hospitals. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  531-127 Lee/ 224.
(49) Letter from port medical supply officer, Newport News, Va., to the Surgeon General, September 23, 1918. Subject: Status of veterinary hospitals. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O.,  583-538  N. N./88.
(50) First indorsement, Surgeon General, to the commandant, Veterinary Training School, Camp Lee, Va., November 5, 1918, relative to equipment of Veterinary Hospitals Nos. 13, 16, 18. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 531-127 Lee/262.
(51) Paragraph 5, Cable No. 836, Headquarters, A. E. F., Chaumont, to The Adjutant General April 2, 1918. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., Cables Received Book.
(52) Letter from the officer in charge, Medical Supply Depot, Louisville, Ky., to Maj. W. T. Fishleigh, S. C., S. G. O., April 3, 1918. Subject: Towing attachment for horse ambulance. On file, Finance and Supply Division, S. G. O., 713-440/180.
(53) Memorandum for Colonel Wolfe from Col. W. Geo. Turner, V. C., August 3, 1926, relative to veterinary ambulances. On file, Finance and  Supply Division, S. G. O., 490 Memo./171-A.
(54) Report of officer in charge, veterinary laboratory section, Army Medical School, to the Surgeon General, June 30, 1920. On file, Finance and  Supply Division, S. G. O.,  500 Misc./20.