Leon C. Gaylord papers, 1898-1900  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Gaylord, Leon C.
Leon C. Gaylord papers
1898-1900 (inclusive)
1 box, (.5 linear ft.)
Collection Number
Correspondence from Gaylord while in the Phillipines during the Spanish American War. Included in his letters are hand drawn maps of the Manila Bay area.
Utah State University, Merrill-Cazier Library, Special Collections and Archives Division
Special Collections & Archives
Merrill-Cazier Library
Utah State University
Logan, UT
Telephone: 435-797-8248
Fax: 435-797-2880
Access Restrictions

Open to public research.

Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant, 2007-2008

Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Leon C. Gaylord was born in 1860 in New Haven, Michigan. During Leon's youth he and his older sister Eva were raised by their maternal grandparents, John and Eliza Griswold who lived in Chesaning, Michigan. During the 1880s Leon worked as a clerk in his grandfather's hardware supply store. On December 25, 1882 Leon married Nettie B. Wood in Chesaning.

In 1898 Leon enlisted in the 1st Regiment of the Tennessee Infantry, Band Company, to fight in the Spanish American War. In 1898 Leon was deployed to Philippines where he fought in the Battle of Manila, the Battle of Muntinlupa, participated in the capture of Iloilo Island, fought near San Loman, and in various other encounters. He served in the war from 1898 to 1900. He was discharged from the military on February 20, 1901.

After returning to the United States Gaylord reenlisted in the military on October 2, 1901 at Cincinnati, Ohio. That winter he sailed to the Philippines and remained there until 1904. In 1904 Gaylord returned to the United States and was stationed at Fort Sheridan, Illinois for two years. In 1906 he traveled to Cuba and was stationed at Camp Columbia, Havana for three years. In 1909 he returned to Fort Sheridan, where he remained until 1914. From 1914 to 1915 he was stationed at Texas City, Texas. In 1915 he set sail for the Philippines but was detained enroute, and spent a year at various US military bases in Panama until he reached the Philippines on March 5, 1917. From 1918 to 1920 Gaylord remained at sea on patrol. During this time his ship docked at places such as Nagasaki, Japan and Vladivostok, Russia.

It is currently unknown what happened to Gaylord after 1920.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

This collection contains the outgoing correspondence of Leon C. Gaylord to his friend Ed H. Stanard and to his sister Eva Gaylord Westfall while he served in the Philippines from 1898 to 1900 during the Spanish American War. His correspondence, primarily to Stanard, describes in detail his role in the military, various battles he participated in, troop moral, general conditions in the Philippine Islands, and other similar topics. His letters specifically mention the capture of Iloilo Island (part of the Canary Islands), the burning of the cities by insurgents, the Battle of Muntinlupa, and the death of Colonel William C. Smith at the Battle of Manila, the rescue of prisoners of war, and participating in various other encounters. Leon's twelve letters of correspondence have been arranged chronologically. Folder 13 contains a typescript of Gaylord's military travels spanning the period of 1898 to 1916. This typescript contains a log of locations and places Gaylord was stationed.

Two photographs taken of Gaylord while serving in the Spanish American War have been separated from this collection for preservation purposes. Researchers interested in viewing these photographs should inquire with USU's photograph curator.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use


It is the responsibility of the user to obtain permission to publish from the owner of the copyright (the institution, the creator of the record, the author or his/her transferees, heirs, legates, or literary executors). The user agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the Utah State University Libraries, its officers, employees, and agents from and against all claims made by any person asserting that he or she is an owner of copyright.

Permission to publish material from the Leon C. Gaylord papers must be obtained from the Special Collections Manuscript Curator and/or the Special Collections Department Head.

Preferred Citation

Leon C. Gaylord papers, 1898-1900. (COLL MSS 150). Utah State University. Special Collections and Archives Department.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
1 1 Outgoing correspondence to E. H. Stanard, Manila
Gaylord discusses his life in the southern United States and his enlistment in the 1st Regiment of the Tennessee Infantry, Band Company.
1898 November 30
1 2 Outgoing correspondence to E. H. Stanard, Manila
Gaylord describes his voyage to the Philippine Islands, includes a newspaper clipping and details the positions of the US Army around Manila.
1898 December 23
1 3 Outgoing correspondence to E. H. Stanard, Manila
Gaylord states that he is grateful to go to war and mentions Colonel W. C. Smith. Includes a hand-drawn map of Manila Bay, the Navy Yard, and various American military instillations.
1899 January 17
1 4 Outgoing correspondence to E. H. Stanard, Manila
Letter discusses the transfer of troops to Iloilo, the death of Colonel W. C. Smith, and the dissolvement of Band Company.
1899 February 9
1 5 Outgoing correspondence to E. H. Stanard, Iloilo Island
Letter describes the victory at Iloilo city and the burning of the city by insurgents.
1899 February 16
1 6 Outgoing correspondence to E. H. Stanard, Iloilo Island
Letter describes the sickness and poor medical facilities. Also includes an example of Asian writing.
1899 March 25
1 7 Outgoing correspondence to E. H. Stanard, Iloilo Island
Discusses smuggling of cigars to America and describes the local people.
1899 April 15
1 8 Outgoing correspondence to Eva Westfall
1899 May 5
1 9 Outgoing correspondence to E. H. Stanard, Iloilo Island
Letter discusses Leon's desire for a promotion.
1899 July 2
1 10 Outgoing correspondence to George and Eva Westfall, Casig
Letter discusses in detail Leon's participation in a Battle of Muntinlupa. He discusses the firefight and how the enemy's position was shelled.
1899 October 22
1 11 Outgoing correspondence to George and Eva Westfall, Majay jay, Povincia de Laguna
Letter discusses the winters activities; such as his engagement in numerous battles, rescuing prisoners of war, and relocation of troops and supplies. The letter also contains a hand-drawn map showing Leon's past travels.
1900 March 12
1 12 Outgoing correspondence to E. H. Stanard, Majay jay, Povincia de Laguna
Letter discloses that Leon should be leaving for home in November. Letter continues to discuss how Leon was sick and lay in the hospital for 40 days and lost a great deal of weight. Also discusses the movement of troops during the past months.
1900 September 20
1 13 History of Gaylord's military travels 1898-1916

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Manila Bay, Battle of, Philippines, 1898--Personal narratives.
  • Soldiers--Philippines--Correspondence.
  • Spanish-American War, 1898--Philippines--Personal narratives.
  • Personal Names :
  • Gaylord, Leon C.--Correspondence.
  • Smith, William C., 1837-1899.
  • Standard, E. H.
  • Westfall, Eva.
  • Corporate Names :
  • United States. Army--Military life.
  • Utah State University. Libraries. Special Collections and Archives. (contributor)