Charles McQuiston – Captain, United States Army

The memorial for Charles McQuiston has one error of note.

It is not accurate to state that Captain McQuiston was killed in battle. The truth is somewhat more complex.

On the evening of September 14, 1901 while in the barracks, Sergeant John Dunn the Company Quartermaster knocked on the door of Captain McQuiston. Captain McQuiston answered the door shouting and drew a pistol and mortally wounded Sergeant Dunn. McQuiston ranting and raving stormed through the barracks firing madly at anyone or thing. Finally, a Private from D company shot and mortally wounded Captain McQuiston.

An investigation by the 4th Infantry regiment determined that Captain McQuiston was mentally ill at the time of the shootings and that his death was a result of justifiable homicide.

This information is based upon the regimental returns and investigation report about the incident located on microfilm of the 4th Infantry regiment at the National Archives in  Washington, D.C.

I thought this information might be of interest to you.

Great job on your Arlington Cemetery Website!

Phil Logan, 4th Infantry veteran, Centreville, Virginia

Certainly by all means use the information. However, Captain McQuiston's service was nevertheless honorable. It was not his fault that he went insane. It was an all too common result of the hard way of life  the old army.

He was born in Indiana on September 30, 1858 and graduated from West Point in 1883.

He died at Luzon, Philippine Islands, on September 15, 1901. He was serving during the Insurrection there with the 4th United States Infantry.

His body was eventually returned to the United States and was buried in Section 1 of Arlington National Cemetery. His wife, Laura Forbes Fitch McQuiston, died on January 9, 1925 and was laid to rest next to her husband.

The Captain, Temporarily Insane, Attacked His Soldiers
Wounded One Or More
Man Who Shot Him Acted In Self-Defense – Death Reported By General MacArthur

WASHINGTON, September 16, 1900 – The War Department today received information from General MacArthur of the tragic death in the Philippines of Captain Charles McQuiston of the Fourth Regiment of United States Infantry, the result of a wound by a private soldier.  General MacArthur's dispatch is as follows:

“Charles McQuiston, Captain of the Fourth United States Infantry, died yesterday at Manganone, Bacoor, Cavite Province, at 8:30 in the evening from a gun shot wound caused by a private soldier.

“Captain McQuiston , in a fit of temporary insanity, attacked men of his company.  Shot one or more, and was shot himself in self-defense.

“Further particulars when received.”

Captain McQuiston  was appointed a Cadet at West Point July 1, 1870.  On graduation he became a Second Lieutenant in the Fourth Infantry.  He became a First Lieutenant February 24, 1891 and was assigned to the Nineteenth Infantry. July of that year he was transferred to the Fifteenth Infantry; Novemberof the same year he was transferred to the First Infantry and the following December was attached to the Fourth Infantry.  He became Captain July 23, 1898.  He was born in Iniana and appointed to the Military Academy from that State.

Name: Charles McQuiston
Given Name: Charles
Surname: McQuiston
Sex: M

Note: He died at Luzon, Philippine Islands, on September 15, 1901. He was serving during the Insurrection there with the 4th United States Infantry. Holder of “Purple Heart.”

Buried in Section 1 of Arlington National Cemetery.

Charles joined the Infantry in Nebraska, the year of graduating from the United States Military Academy. On July 23 1898 he was promoted to Captain, having been recommended for the brevet of Captain for gallantry in action at El Caney in the Spanish-American War.

Birth: 30 September 1858 in Homestead, Allen County, Indiana. Death: 15 September 1900 in Bancoor, Luzon, Philippines Islands. Burial: Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia.

Graduated: June 1883 West Point Academy, West Point, New York
Event: Military July 1, 1883 4th U.S. Infantry

Father: John McQuiston
Born 27 June 1812 in Derry Township, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania
Mother: Eliza Rodgers
Born 16 September 1816 in Wheeling, West Virginia

Marriage: Laura Forbes Fitch
Born July 1863 in Chicago, Illinois
Died 9 January 1935 at Dobbs Ferry, New York

Charles and Laura were married by the Reverend B.F. Miller.  Married: 13 June 1889 in Logansport, Indiana.

Laura was said to be a member of Mayflower Descendants and Daughters of The American Revolution.

To Mrs. Charles McQuiston:
March 26, 1901.

DEAR MRS. McQUISTON, I have never had an experience which moved me to
believe the living can communicate with the dead, but my wife and I have
experimented in the matter when opportunity offered and shall continue to do so.

I enclose a letter which came this morning–the second from the same source.  Mrs. ‘K' is a Missourian, and lately she discovered, by accident, that she was a remarkable hypnotiser. Her best subject is a Missouri girl, Miss White, who is to come here soon and sustain strictly scientific tests before professors at Columbia University.  Mrs. Clemens and I intend to be present. And we shall ask the pair to come to our house to do whatever things they can do. Meantime, if you thought well of it, you might write her and arrange a meeting, telling her it is by my suggestion and that I gave you her address.

Someone has told me that Mrs. Piper is discredited. I cannot be sure, but I think it was Mr. Myers, President of the London Psychical Research Society – we heard of his death yesterday. He was a spiritualist. I am afraid he was a very easily convinced man. We visited two mediums whom he and Andrew Lang considered quite wonderful, but they were quite transparent frauds.

Mrs. Clemens corrects me: One of those women was a fraud, the other not a fraud, but only an innocent, well-meaning, driveling vacancy.

Sincerely yours, S. L. CLEMENS. (NOTE: Mark Twain)

MCQUISTON – Laure Forbes Firch of pneumonia on Wednesday, January 9, 1935, at Dobbs Ferry, New York, widow of Captain Charles McQuiston, Fourth Infantry, United States Army, dearly beloved mother of  Marjory M. Sutherland and Charles F. McQuiston and sister of Abigail H. Fitch.  Services at her home, 180 South Broadway, Dobbs Ferry, on Thursday, January 10 at 4 P.M. Interment Arlington National Cemetery, Washington, D.C.

Charles McQuiston of Indiana
Appointed From Indiana, Cadet, United States Military Academy, 1 July 1879 (47)
Second Lieutenant, 4th United States Infantry, 13 June 1883
First Lieutenant, 19th United States Infantry, 24 February 1891
Transferred to the 5th United States Infantry, 20 July 1891
Transferred to the 1st United States Infantry,  5 November 1891
Transferred to the 4th United States States Infantry, 8 December 1891
Captain, 23 July 1898
Died 15 September 1900

Born in Indiana, September 30, 1858. Graduated from West Point in June 1883.
Served throughout the Cuban Campaign during the Spanish-American War and
particularly in the battles of El Caney and Santiago.

Transferred to the Philippines where he died on September 15, 1899 at Bancoup, Philippines. Buried in Section 1 of Arlington National Cemetery where his stone is inscribed:

“Gentle, Brave and True of Heart.”

His wife, Laura Fitch McQuiston, died on January 9, 1935 and she is buried beside
her husband and her stone is inscribed:

“Her children arise up and call her blessed.”

DATE OF DEATH: 09/15/1900

DATE OF DEATH: 01/09/1935



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