Major General Logan Feland of the U.S. Marines owes roots to Kentucky State Guard

By John Trowbridge, Kentucky National Guard

Logan Feland (courtesy photo)

Logan Feland, an architect of the modern Marine Corps, began his service in the Kentucky State Guard. 

His major military duty includes service on the Mexican Border and in World War I. 

We know little of Feland’s early childhood other than he is a son of John and Sara (Kennedy) Feland. 

Logan Feland was born in Hopkinsville (Christian County), Ky., Aug. 18, 1869. He attended Hopkinsville High School from 1872 to 1882, then went on to South Kentucky College—also in Hopkinsville. In June 1886, he received a diploma in mechanics and astronomy from the School of Mathematics and a degree from the School of Engineering.

While still attending college in 1885, Feland joined the military as a Private in Company D, (Latham Light Guards), 3rd Infantry Regiment, Kentucky State Guard in Hopkinsville. His brother, John, was the company’s First Lieutenant. 

While serving in Company D, Feland continually earned higher rank, though another officer peer, Jouett Henry, would eventually command the company.

In March 1886, Kentucky activated Feland, and other members of Company D, for state duty during the Greenwood Mine Strike in Pulaski County. Feland’s direction in his military career changed soon after that.

In July 1888, while working for the railroad in Alabama, Feland sent his resignation to Company D. This decision would change not only the course of his history, but that of the U.S. military.

Logan Feland, Kentucky State Guard (courtesy photo)

Logan applied for the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, June 1889. However, he was not one of the ten appointees accepted by President William McKinley.

That same year, the Feland family moved to Owensboro (Daviess County), Ky. 

Logan instead enrolled at St. John’s Military Academy—the current site of Manlius Pebble Hill School—in Manlius, NY, a preparatory school for college or military service.

Military instruction at St. John’s included: practical and theoretical work in infantry drill regulations, manual of guard duty, map reading, duties of advance and rear guards, patrols, military law, military correspondence, organization and tactics, customs of the service and military history. 

The studious Feland had a lighter side. While at St. John’s, Logan attempted to fire the salute canon at midnight. He loaded the gun with five pounds of powder—which was triple the normal charge—filled the muzzle with stones and laid a kerosene-soaked rope from the nozzle to a point 30 feet to the rear. Then, he lit the rope and ran a safe distance to watch. However, the housemaster discovered the prank and pulled the fuse away from the nozzle before it reached the powder. It took several years for the academy to learn Feland was the culprit.

In 1890, Feland enrolled at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he pursued a Bachelor of Arts in architecture. He graduated in 1892 and returned to work in Owensboro as a new architect. In Spring of 1893, they hired him to design an addition to the Daviess County Courthouse. About one year later, he presented plans for their new jailhouse. By this time, Feland already made the move to Louisville, where in March 1895, he would go into partnership with fellow architect, F. W. Mowbray.

Feland returned to Owensboro in late 1896 to continue work as a civilian architect.

In the coming February, he established a new military company in the city. And on June 1, 1897, Company H, 3rd Regiment of the Kentucky State Guard, officially mustered into service with Logan Feland as the newly elected commander.

The men attended their first encampment at Fontaine Ferry Park in Louisville one month later. During a drill and ceremony competition, Company H took second place. 

The Owensboro papers commented, Captain Feland “is exceedingly popular with his company and has given his whole time and attention to the members and has now a drilled company that Owensboro can feel proud of.”

On September 21, 1897, Logan Feland resigned as Captain of his company and accepted a position with a construction company in New York City.

In the Spring of 1898, the U.S. was on the verge of war with Spain.  The Owensboro newspapers would later report on Logan Feland’s promise to return and take command of Company H, if they declared war.  

On April 25, 1898, the U.S. Congress declared war upon Spain. Feland held up his honor and returned to take command of the company he founded.  

For his first item of business, Feland echoed the order to his men that they would mobilize at Camp Collier, near Lexington, Ky. The men soon left Owensboro, May 7, and mustered into Federal service by May 21, 1898.  

Units of the 3rd Kentucky were re-designated, and Company H became Company F, 3rd Kentucky, United States Volunteers. A Kentucky newspaper noted Captain Feland at Camp Collier when it stated Feland was “one of the best captains [there], and should this war be pulled off, [he] is going to make his mark, sure.”   

On June 1, the company arrived at Camp Thomas, Chickamauga Park, Ga.  Three weeks later, the company’s men presented Feland and the officers with light cavalry sabers. The company traveled to Newport News, Va., July 27, where many of the 3rd Kentucky Soldiers became ill.

The regiment went back to Lexington, Aug. 18. 

The Messenger-Inquirer, a newspaper in Owensboro, ran an article on Sept. 16, 1898, concerning the men of Company F and their take on the commander. Many of Logan Feland’s men are “down on him,” to use their expression, because they say he is “tyrannical.” They say he is exacting in camp and field and will not let them do what they like. 

On the contrary. Not a member of the company had died, and the percentage of sickness among his men was smaller than almost any other similar numbered unit in the Army, and definitely among the Kentucky troops.

Ultimately, the men were lucky to be alive thanks to Captain Freland.

Only one Owensboro Soldier died while on active duty. Otis Ford had taken ill and returned home. He died soon after his arrival.

In November 1898, the regiment traveled to Columbus, Ga., and later to Savannah en route to Cuba. The Treaty of Paris (1898) soon ended the Splendid Little War, Dec. 10, 1898. However, Feland and his men continued to Cuba.

The regiment sailed from Savannah on the transport Minnewaska, Jan. 17, 1899. They arrived at Matanzas, Cuba, on Jan. 22. After two weeks at Matanza, they sent the Owensboro men to Cardenas to remain until ordered back to Matanzas. On April 9, they sailed for Savannah, arriving April 12. The company remained in quarantine for several days to undergo the disinfecting treatment for yellow fever.

On May 16, 1899, Company F honorably mustered out of Federal service and Feland’s command of the unit ended. However, he spent most of his time on detached service.

Brigadier General Logan Freland, U.S. Marines (courtesy photo)

Feland’s service record shows from Jan. 6 to Feb. 18, 1899, he served as Provost Marshal in Columbus, Ga.; from Feb. 19 to Mar. 9, he was in charge of Provost Guard and Convalescents en route from Columbus, Ga., to Matanzas, Cuba; on Mar. 9, his records show repairing barracks at Matanzas; from Mar. 15-27 he was Acting Army Quartermaster at Colon, Cuba; and from Mar. 30 to Apr. 4, he repaired the local jail.  

While on federal duty, Feland sought active duty appointment with the Marine Corps. They accepted him. And, on July 1, 1899, they appointed him as First Lieutenant for his previous military experience in the Kentucky State Guard.

The following is a brief history of Feland’s career in the Marine Corps:

From the rank of Lieutenant to Captain he served with Marine detachments on USS Oregon (BB-3), Massachusetts (BB-2), Indiana (BB-1), Minnesota (BB-22), and Montana (AC-13).  

He married Katherine Cordner Heath, a well-known soprano, in New York City, Feb. 14, 1907.

Prior to his service in the First World War, Feland had more than eight years of foreign duty, including service in Panama in 1904 and 1911; expeditions to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in 1904, 1911, 1912, and 1913; San Juan, Puerto Rico, 1904; service with the Army of Cuban Pacification in 1906; service in Santo Domingan waters in 1912; Culebra, Puerto Rico, 1914; and the occupation of Vera Cruz, Mexico, 1914.  

His home service was equally varied and included duty at Marine Barracks, Washington, D.C.; League Island, Philadelphia, Pa.; Narragansett Bay, R.I.; Norfolk, Va., and New York City; instruction in submarine mining at the Torpedo Station, Narragansett Bay; teaching in the School of Application, Annapolis, Md.; and the Advanced Base School, New London, Conn.; observation of Army artillery practice at Fortress Monroe, Va.; the supervising of construction of new barracks at Annapolis, Md.; and recruiting in New York City.

Feland attached to the 5th Marine Regiment for service in France during World War I, and he was among the first contingent of American forces to travel overseas with General Pershing in May 1917. On his arrival in France, they made Feland executive officer of the 5th Marines. While attached to the 4th Marine Brigade, they threw his unit into the breach to stem the German advance at Château-Thierry in May 1918. Feland was in the thick of the fighting. At Belleau Woods in June 1918, when the halt in the German advance became a retreat, Feland assumed command of all troops in the Wood. For his conspicuous valor on this occasion, he earned the Distinguished Service Cross. After his promotion to colonel, Feland became commanding officer of the 5th Regiment and led it in the Battles of Soissons,[1] Blanc Mont Ridge, and in the Argonne. For his outstanding exploits in the War, Feland was also awarded the Distinguished Service Medals of both the Army and the Navy, Officer’s Rank in the Legion of Honor, the Croix de Guerre with Bronze Star, Gold Star, and four palms. They also cited him in dispatches six times.

Upon his return to the United States in May 1919, Feland was stationed at Headquarters Marine Corps until December when he was detached to command the 2nd Brigade in Santo Domingo. Returning to the United States the following fall, he rejoined Headquarters as Director of the Division of Operations and Training. He held that post for two years, after which he became assistant to the major general commandant for another two years. From Nov. 1926 to Feb. 1927 he was called from his command of the Marine Expeditionary Force at Quantico to head the Eastern Section of the U.S. Mail Guard.

In April 1927, Feland took command of the 2nd Brigade in Nicaragua. After four months there, he transferred to the command of Marine Barracks, Parris Island, S.C. He served in their command from September 1927 to January 1928. He then returned to Nicaragua and assumed command of the Brigade for a second time, serving there until March 1929. For this second tour in Nicaragua, they awarded Feland another Distinguished Service Medal.

Following a short period of serving at Headquarters, and after his return from Nicaragua in July 1929, Feland held the title of commanding general of the Department of the Pacific. He was serving in that position when he was detached on Feb. 25, 1933. He retired from the Marine Corps Sept. 1.

Maj. Gen. (Retired) Logan Feland died in Columbus, Ohio, on July 17, 1936. His burial lies in Section 7 of the Arlington National Cemetery.

* * * *

Company H, 3rd Kentucky Infantry roster during the Spanish-American War

The following roster published in the May 7, 1898, edition of the Owensboro Messenger. They released it prior to Feland’s company leaving for Camp Collier, Lexington, Ky. The total number of officers and enlisted is 84, the required number.  At Camp Collier, the company was re-designated Company F, 3rd Regiment, United States Volunteers. 

Logan Feland — Captain (architect)
H. W. Baker — First Lieutenant (bank clerk)
T. F. Malin — Second Lieutenant (clerk)
Newman Birk — Quartermaster Sergeant (grocer)
Otis Ford — First Sergeant (druggist)
G. H. Frayser — Second Sergeant (grocer)
A. G. Chapman — Third Sergeant (clerk)
Marion May — Fifth Sergeant (clerk)
Thomas Harper — First Corporal (stenographer)
A. Gordon — Third Corporal (clerk)
W. T. Grady — Fourth Corporal (clerk)
Lamar Welch — Fifth Corporal (paper hanger)

PRIVATES:
Abrams, Ed (farmer)
Alexander, Lewis (clerk)
Allen, R. L. (teacher)
Allgood, A. C. (farmer)
Barnett, John (farmer)
Boswell, H. F. (farmer)
Boyd, H. D. (journalist)
Bryan, F. C. (farmer)
Calvert, George (farmer)
Cecil, Sylvester (telephone lineman)
Clarke, W. B. (farmer)
Cobb, Robert (cooper)
Cosby, H. T. (clerk)
Craycraft, Lee (miner)
Davis, J. L. (farmer)
Dawson, Wilbur (clerk)
Farmer, Allen (farmer)
Fuqua, H. W. (clerk)
Gans, H. C. (clerk)
Gates, Hope (clerk)
Gipe, Samuel E. (clerk)
Goode, W. J. (carpenter)
Gordon, Carey (farmer)
Graham, Joe (farmer)
Graves, D. W. (barber)
Green, W. E. (farmer)
Harbourt, W. E. (engineer)
Harrold, J. S. (farmer)
Hawes, J. L. (farmer)
Head, Herbert (clerk)
Henderson, R. H. (trainman)
Henry, Will (farmer)
Higdon, W. J. (mantel setter)
Higgins, R. P. (clerk)
Hines, Arthur (trainman)
Holderman, W. W. (farmer)
Hopkins, Henry (tobacconist) 
Howard, C. B. (farmer)
Huff, Ed (farmer)
Hughes, Ed (bookkeeper)
Huyser, R. O. (salesman)
Jones, Charles (farmer)
King, S. L. (farmer)
Lashbrook, Guy (carpenter)
Leibfried, George (carpenter)
Logadon, H. H. (horseman)
Matthews, E. Y. (farmer)
May, Homer (farmer)
May, Phil (butcher)
Meisner, J. A. (farmer)
Meredith, C. D. (engineer)
Montgomery, Sam (candy maker)
Neal, Elven (farmer)
Noe, J. D. (clerk)
Norris, Frank (farmer)
Parsons, James (distiller)
Parker, Jack (farmer)
Pate, William (farmer)
Pixman, Sid (farmer)
Sample, O. F. (cooper)
Schott, Peter (farmer)
Thornsberry, Marion (farmer)
Turpin, S. D. (laborer)
Veatch, G. M. (farmer)
Walp, Rufus (cooper)
Wilhoyte, J. W. (pipe-fitter)
Worthington, J. W. (motorman)
Wright, W. T. (farmer)
Yates, Mat (farmer)

* * * *

Logan Feland’s dates of rank:
Private (Company D, 3rd Kentucky, KSG) July 18, 1885 to 1888
First Sergeant (Company D, 3rd Kentucky, KSG) 1888 to July 1888 
Captain (Company H, 3rd Kentucky, KSG) June to Sept. 1897
Captain (Company H, 3rd Kentucky, re-designated Company F, 3rd Kentucky, KSG May 20, 1898) April 26, 1898 to May 16, 1899
First Lieutenant (USMC) July 1, 1899
Captain (USMC) March 3, 1903 
Major (USMC) Aug. 29, 1916
Lieutenant Colonel (USMC) March 26, 1917
Colonel (USMC) July 1, 1918
Brigadier General (USMC) March 9, 1919 
Major General (USMC) Oct. 1, 1931

* * * *

Logan Feland’s Commands:
Commander, Company H, 3rd Regiment Kentucky Volunteers, Kentucky State Guard, Owensboro, Kentucky from June 1897 to Sept. 1897.
Commander, Company H, 3rd Regiment Kentucky Volunteers, Kentucky State Guard, Owensboro, Kentucky from April 26, 1898 (company re-designated, Company F, May 20, 1898) – May 16, 1899.
Commander, 5th US Marine Regiment, France, from July 17 – Nov. 11, 1918.
Commander, 2nd Brigade of Marines, San Domingo:  Dec. 4, 1919 – Oct. 24, 1920.
Commander, U. S. Forces, Nicaragua:  1927 – 1929. 
Commander, Department of the Pacific:  July 1929 – Feb. 25, 1933.

General Feland’s awards and decorations:
Distinguished Service Cross (Army)
General Orders:  War Department, GO No. 99 (1919), 2nd Division, American Expeditionary Forces.
Citation:
The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 9, 1918, takes pleasure in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross to Colonel Logan Feland (MCSN O-284), United States Marine Corps for extraordinary heroism while serving with the Fifth Regiment (Marines), 2d Division, A.E.F., in action during the operations at Bois-de-Beleau, June 6 – 14, 1918.  Colonel Feland distinguished himself by his energy, courage, and disregard for personal safety in voluntarily leading troops into action through heavy artillery and machine-gun fire.  His efforts contributed largely to our successes at this point. 

Distinguished Service Medal (Army)
General Orders:  War Department, GO No. 89 (1919).
Citation:
The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 9, 1918, takes pleasure in presenting the Army Distinguished Service Medal to Brigadier General Logan Feland (MCSN: O-284), United States Marine Corps, for exceptionally meritorious and distinguished services to the Government of the United States, in a duty of great responsibility during World War I, as Lieutenant Colonel and the second in command of the 5th Regiment, United States Marine Corps.  Brigadier General Feland had an important function in the training of that organization, and he participated creditably in its operations in the Aisne defensive and the fighting in the Chateau-Thierry section.  Having taken command of his regiment as Colonel shortly before the battle of Soissons, he led it with extraordinary skill throughout the remainder of its engagements, giving proof of the highest qualities of leadership and unceasing devotion to his important duties.

Navy Distinguished Service Medal
Authority Navy Book of Distinguished Service (Stringer)
Citation:
The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Navy Distinguished Service Medal to Brigadier General Logan Feland (MCSN: O-284), United States Marine Corps, for exceptionally meritorious and distinguished services as Lieutenant Colonel and the second in command of the 5th Regiment, United States Marine Corps, Brigadier General Feland had an important function in the training of that organization, and he participated creditably in its operations in the Aisne defensive and the fighting in the Chateau-Thierry section.  Having command of his regiment as Colonel shortly before the battle of Soissons, he had led it with extraordinary skill throughout the remainder of its engagements, giving proof of the highest qualities of leadership and unceasing devotion to his important duties.

Silver Star with 4 gold stars:
Citation Orders, 2nd Division, American Expeditionary Forces
Citation:
By direction of the President, under the provisions of the Act of Congress approved July 9, 1918 (Bul. No. 43, W.D. 1918) Lieutenant Colonel Logan Feland (MCSN: O-284), United States Marine Corps, is cited by the Commanding General, SECOND Division, American Expeditionary Forces, for gallantry in action and a silver star may be placed upon the ribbon of the Victory Medals awarded him.  Lieutenant Colonel Feland distinguished himself while serving with the Fifth Regiment (Marines), 2d Division, American Expeditionary Forces at Chateau-Thierry, France, 6 June to 10 July 1918. 

Citation Orders, 2nd Division, American Expeditionary Forces.
Second Citation:
By direction of the President, under the provisions of the Act of Congress approved July 9, 1918 (Bul. No. 43, W.D. 1918) Lieutenant Colonel Logan Feland (MCSN: O-284), United States Marine Corps, is cited by the Commanding General, SECOND Division, American Expeditionary Forces, for gallantry in action and a silver star may be placed upon the ribbon of the Victory Medals awarded him.  Lieutenant Colonel Feland distinguished himself while serving with the Fifth Regiment (Marines), 2d Division, American Expeditionary Forces at Chateau-Thierry, France, 6 June to 10 July 1918. 

Citation Orders, 2nd Division, American Expeditionary Forces.
Third Citation:
By direction of the President, under the provisions of the Act of Congress approved July 9, 1918 (Bul. No. 43, W.D. 1918) Lieutenant Colonel Logan Feland (MCSN: O-284), United States Marine Corps, is cited by the Commanding General, SECOND Division, American Expeditionary Forces, for gallantry in action and a silver star may be placed upon the ribbon of the Victory Medals awarded him.  Lieutenant Colonel Feland distinguished himself while serving with the Fifth Regiment (Marines), 2d Division, American Expeditionary Forces at Soissons, France, 18-22 July 1918. 

Citation Orders, 2nd Division, American Expeditionary Forces.
Four Citation:
By direction of the President, under the provisions of the Act of Congress approved July 9, 1918 (Bul. No. 43, W.D. 1918) Lieutenant Colonel Logan Feland (MCSN: O-284), United States Marine Corps, is cited by the Commanding General, SECOND Division, American Expeditionary Forces, for gallantry in action and a silver star may be placed upon the ribbon of the Victory Medals awarded him.  Lieutenant Colonel Feland distinguished himself while serving with the Fifth Regiment (Marines), 2d Division, American Expeditionary Forces at St. Mihiel & Champagne, France, 15 – 18 July 1918 and 12 – 16 September 1918. 

Citation Orders, 2nd Division, American Expeditionary Forces.
Fifth Citation:
By direction of the President, under the provisions of the Act of Congress approved July 9, 1918 (Bul. No. 43, W.D. 1918) Lieutenant Colonel Logan Feland (MCSN: O-284), United States Marine Corps, is cited by the Commanding General, SECOND Division, American Expeditionary Forces, for gallantry in action and a silver star may be placed upon the ribbon of the Victory Medals awarded him.  Lieutenant Colonel Feland distinguished himself while serving with the Fifth Regiment (Marines), 2d Division, American Expeditionary Forces during the Meuse-Argonne Offensive, France, 30 September – 11 November 1918. 

Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal with 2 Stars
Army of Cuba Occupation Medal
Cuban Pacification Medal (Navy)
Army of Puerto Rican Occupation Medal
Mexican Service Medal
World War I Victory Medal with 4 Service Stars
Legion of Honor, Officer (France)
Croix de guerre (WWI) with 4 Palms, 1 Gold Star and 1 Bronze Star (France)

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