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Last Updated: Nov 17, 2015     Views: 33

General Summerall's contribution to the suppression of the Boxer Rebellion:

March 4, 1867-May 14, 1955. General. Graduate of the United States Military Academy, 1892. Previously he had graduated from Porter Military Academy in Charleston, an elementary and secondary school. President of The Citadel, 1931-1953. During his term, the number of cadets increased from 600 to 1,800. He was a famous artillery general in World War I. During the 1920s he chaired a forerunner of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In this capacity he was an opponent of air power and of Billy Mitchell, the father of the U. S. Air Force. According to Dictionary of American Biography, he was dismissed as a judge in the court-martial of Billy Mitchell because the defense showed his bias. He was a great friend of General Patton of World War II fame.

At the turn of the century, an interesting incident took place. Summerall's artillery battery was assigned to the China Relief Expedition during the Boxer Rebellion. Try as they might they could not hit the gate of the imperial city of Peking. "...despite heavy fire he used chalk to mark a target for his platoon cannon on a gate of the first wall and repeated this exploit at a gate of the second wall." This demonstrated his own bravery and the effective use of artillery. (Source: Dictionary of American Biography. Supplement Five, 1951-1955, p. 668)

A February 13, 1981 issue of The Brigadier describes Summerall's heroism and patriotism.

A portrait of Summerall hangs in the Daniel Library.

(Sources: Dennis Nicholson, History of The Citadel: The Years of Summerall and Clark. U430.C5 N53; W. Gary Nichols, "The General As President: Charles P. Summerall and Mark W. Clark As Presidents of The Citadel," South Carolina Historical Magazine 95, no. 4 (October 1994): 314-335)

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