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[488] of satisfaction. It was with the chaplain, that he might come into more immediate contact with the cadets, and that they should have the privilege of going directly to him at all times. To this end he was given rooms in the cadet barracks, and there he invited the confidence of the cadets.

The meetings for social religious exercises had been retained ever since I had established them before the war.

Another change which caused me a good deal of heartache was to do away with the system that had been in vogue so long at the mess hall, of treating the cadets to very indifferent fare and reasoning that they ought to be kept to the rations of the enlisted men. In fact, the rations of the men at the different posts in the army in the time of peace had been improved by their company gardens, by their sale of bread, and by other means until they were far ahead of the cadet mess. True, the cadets had a garden, but in some way everything touching their food was unsatisfactory to them. I recommended that the veteran purveyor of the mess be retired, and properly paid, and that an officer, William F. Spurgin, be detailed in his place, and have the whole charge of the cadets' commissary, garden, and mess hall. I had had a long experience with Spurgin in the West and knew what he could do. He came and took hold of the work as nobody had ever done before. His efforts were so productive of good results that the cadets very soon called him “General Spurgin.” His theory was to give them the best possible of everything, and while he improved their table extraordinarily, he managed to diminish and not increase the expenses.

I found again that the windows of what we used to

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