23 July 1997

Day 40 - Louisiana, MO to St. Peters, MO

Distance travelled: 61 miles
Winds: none
Grades: Up and down
Weather: fair
Condition of roads: fair
Delays: Bicycles –30m/Tires – 1h/Lunch – 6h/Other – 2h 50m
Actual travel time: 8h 20m
Rate per hour: 7.3
- Lt. James A. Moss Report to the Adjutant Synopsis of Trip

Places & times mentioned:
West Quincy is not mentioned by it makes the mileage figures work; Louisiana, MO [2 AM]; Eolia, MO [4:30 AM] ; Troy [left at noon]; St. Peters, MO

“In order to reach St. Louis when we were expected, it was necessary to make the ride between Louisiana and Eolia between 2 and 4:30 o’clock in the morning.”

-Lt. Moss, LA Times The Army A-Wheel, Nov. 21, 1897

"The best riding on the trip was from Louisiana to Eolia in Pike County."

- St. Louis Star [St. Louis, MO], July 25, 1897

"After their arrival [at Louisiana, MO] the bugle sounded “fall in” Corporal Haynes announced that when repairs were done the men could sleep until 2 p.m.[sic- that should be 2 a.m.!... Read on to see how the men rode in the middle of the night. - MH], when the start for St. Louis would be made.

The men fell out and went about their tasks. Lieut. Moss moved among them and his keen, quick eye noted every imperfection in their machines. He called them sharply to account for negligence. Private Sam Johnson was so busy entertaining visitors until midnight that he neglected to repair a broken axle. He was ordered to have his wheel ready and join his comrades by train at St. Charles. When he gets to Jefferson Barracks he will spend three days in the guard-house for his negligence.

An hour after midnight the sleeping wheelmen were awakened. Coffee was made, blankets were packed and guns shouldered. Just as the moon rose above the brush on the eastern shore of the river, the bugler sounded and the corps began the last day of their eventful journey.

They took the turnpike. After a twenty-five mile coast to Eolia they will breakfast and then push on to Troy. Thence the route will be to Old Monroe and from there to St. Charles and then over the St. Charles rock road into St. Louis."

- St. Louis Post-Dispatch [St. Louis, MO] July 23, 1897

[I could not find any mention of the Bicycle Corps in the Troy paper. I looked very carefully]

"According to Lieut. Moss’ schedule, he was to reach St. Charles, which is 22 miles from St. Louis, by wagon road, at 3 p.m. Saturday.

A representative of “The St. Louis Star,” on a wheel, was there to meet him. The only authoritative information to be had at that hour was to the effect that the corps had left Troy, 35 miles north, at noon, and would reach St. Charles at sundown. The heat became oppressive and the Lieutenant called a halt to recuperate the men shortly after leaving Troy.

At 5 o’clock the march was resumed and despite every effort to push the men along only ten miles had been covered when darkness overtook them. It was a black night and an impending storm decided Lieut. Moss to make camp, which was done midway between St. Peter and St. Paul [near modern-day O’Fallon?]."

- St. Louis Star [St. Louis, MO], July 25, 1897

“Our last camp was made three miles from St. Peter, and the next morning, July 24, at 5:30, we mounted our wheels and started for the goal – St. Louis.”
- Lt. Moss, LA Times The Army A-Wheel, Nov. 21, 1897

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