Robert K. Evans

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Robert K. Evans
Robert K. Evans.jpg
Brigadier General Robert Kennon Evans
Born (1852-11-19)November 19, 1852
Jackson, Mississippi
Died July 31, 1926(1926-07-31) (aged 73)
Camaldoli, Italy
Place of burial Campo Cestio, Rome, Italy
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch United States Army seal United States Army
Years of service 1875-1918
Rank US-O7 insignia.svg Brigadier General
Commands held Chief of the Militia Bureau (1911 to 1912)
Department of the East (1914 to 1915)
Hawaiian Department (1916)
Philippine Department (1917 to 1918)
Battles/wars Indian Wars
Spanish-American War
World War I
Awards Distinguished Service Medal
Silver Star (2)

Brigadier General Robert Kennon Evans (November 19, 1852—July 31, 1926) was a United States Army officer who served in several high profile assignments, including Chief of the National Guard Bureau and commander of the Hawaiian Department.

Early life[edit]

Robert Kennon Evans was born in Jackson, Mississippi on November 19, 1852. He attended the University of Mississippi,[1] graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1875, and received his commission as a Second Lieutenant of Infantry.[2]

Start of career[edit]

Initially assigned to the 12th Infantry, Evans served with the regiment until 1898, receiving promotion to First Lieutenant in 1882 and Captain in 1893. From 1887 to 1898 Evans was the regimental adjutant. During his service with the 12th Infantry Evans was assigned to a variety of posts, including California, Kansas, North Dakota, and numerous sites in Arizona, and New York. He was a veteran of the Nez Perce War and the Bannock War. During the Spanish-American War he served in Cuba and took part in the Battles of El Caney and San Juan Hill.[3][4][5]

During his service with the 12th Infantry Evans also performed detached duty, including Military Attache at the U.S. Embassy in Berlin, Germany.[6][7]

Later career[edit]

In 1901 Evans was promoted to Major in the 30th Infantry, and was soon reassigned to the 12th Infantry, while performing duty with the Army's Adjutant General department. In 1905 he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in the 5th Regiment and 28th Infantry, and performed duty with the Army General Staff.[8][9]

In 1908 and 1909 Evans was Director of the Army War College and served as acting President.[10][11]

Evans was promoted to Colonel in 1909 and assigned to the 30th Infantry, where he served until 1911. In 1911 Evans was promoted to Brigadier General and selected to serve as Chief of the Militia Bureau, the forerunner of the National Guard Bureau.[12]

Career as a general officer[edit]

After leaving the Militia Bureau in 1912 Evans continued to serve in command assignments, including the Department of the Gulf (1912-1914), the Department of the East (1914-1915), the 2nd Infantry Brigade in Laredo, Texas (1915 to 1916), and the Hawaiian Department in 1916.[13][14][15][16][17][18]

While commanding the Department of the East in 1914 Evans was reprimanded for a speech in which he made comments critical of President Woodrow Wilson's foreign policy.[19][20][21]

Evans retired in 1916. In 1917 he volunteered for World War I, was recalled to active duty and assigned as commander of the Philippine Department, where he served until 1918.[22] He retired again in 1918.[23]

Awards and decorations[edit]

Evans was awarded the Silver Star twice, once for heroism at El Caney and once for herosim while fighting insurgents in Luzon. He received the Distinguished Service Medal at his retirement.[24][25]

Published works[edit]

A noted author of articles on military subjects, Evans's published works included "The Indian Question in Arizona" (Atlantic Monthly, August, 1886);[26] and "The Infantry of Our Regular Army, Its History, Possibilities and Necessities" (Monographs of the U.S. Infantry Society, 1898).[27]

Retirement and death[edit]

In retirement Evans lived in Washington, D.C., and later relocated to Camaldoli, Italy, where he died on July 31, 1926.[28][29] He was buried in Rome, Italy's Campo Cestio.[30]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Chi Psi Fraternity, The Fourth Decennial Catalogue of the Chi Psi Fraternity, 1883, page 243
  2. ^ George Washington Cullum, Edward Singleton Holden, Wirt Robinson, Biographical Register of the Officers and Graduates of the U.S. Military Academy, Volume VI-A, 1920, page 206
  3. ^ Constance Wynn Altshuler, Cavalry Yellow & Infantry Blue: Army Officers in Arizona Between 1851 and 1886, 1991, page 124
  4. ^ ]United States Military Academy Association of Graduates, Annual Report, 1926, page 62
  5. ^ Winthrop Biddle, Some Famous Army Officers, Munsey's Magazine, October, 1914, page 66
  6. ^ University of Mississippi, Annual Catalogue, 1894, page 59
  7. ^ New York Times, The Prussian Remount Depot, November 4, 1895
  8. ^ George Washington Cullum, Edward Singleton Holden, Biographical Register of the Officers and Graduates of the U.S. Military Academy, 1920, pages 206 to 207
  9. ^ New York Times, The United Service; The Army, January 21, 1910
  10. ^ U.S. Army Adjutant General, Official U.S. Army register, 1909, page 109
  11. ^ Baltimore Sun, Will March to Richmond, May 1, 1909
  12. ^ National Guard Association of the United States, new Chief of Militia Affairs, National Guard Magazine, January, 1911, page 165
  13. ^ United States Army Pacific, Biography, Brigadier General Robert K. Evans, accessed September 8, 2012
  14. ^ Atlanta Constitution, Evans Will Head Gulf Department, August 18, 1912
  15. ^ Atlanta Constitution, Atlanta is Military Key to the South; General Wood Favors Brigade Post Here, November 5, 1912
  16. ^ Atlanta Constitution, General Evans to Visit Augusta and Savannah, February 18, 1914
  17. ^ New York Times, Order Gen. Evans to Texas Command; His Reprimand, Says Secretary Garrison, Will Go Through Regular Channels, July 8, 1914
  18. ^ Christian Science Monitor, Musketry School at Honolulu, October 9, 1916
  19. ^ New York Times, Gen. Evans Derides Our Foreign Policy, June 27, 1914
  20. ^ New York Times, Misquoted, Says Evans; General Asserts That He Did Not Criticise the Administration, July 3, 1914
  21. ^ Atlanta Constitution, Wilson to Reprimand General R.K. Evans, July 5, 1914
  22. ^ Christian Science Monitor, Veteran Officer Reassigned, July 23, 1917
  23. ^ Dunbar Rowland, History of Mississippi, the Heart of the South, Volume 2, 1925, pages 384 to 385
  24. ^ George Washington Cullum, Biographical Register of the Officers and Graduates of the U.S. Military Academy, Volume 7, 1930, page 131
  25. ^ New York Times, D.S.M. Awarded to Gen. Evans, April 21, 1923
  26. ^ Robert K. Evans, The Indian Question in Arizona, August, 1886, page 167
  27. ^ Robert K. Evans, The Infantry of our Regular Army, its History, Possibilities and Necessities, Monographs of the U.S. Infantry Society, 1898, page 1
  28. ^ New York Times, Brig. Gen. R.K. Evans is Dead in Italy, August 4, 1926
  29. ^ Atlanta Constitution, General R.K. Evans Summoned by Death, August 4, 1926
  30. ^ Rome Protestant Cemetery, Catalogue, accessed September 8, 2012
Military offices
Preceded by
Erasmus M. Weaver, Jr.
Chief of the National Guard Bureau
1911 –- 1912
Succeeded by
Albert L. Mills