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CHAPTER VI:
THE ROYAL FORT OF ST. IGNATIUS AT TUBAC

E. 8. Inspections

The military inspection must date from the invention of formal fighting forces and its form and function have been very stable in European armies for many centuries. How often the Tubac garrison stood inspection before its company commander is problematical-it almost never mustered the entire unit because of the demands of escort and guard duty. 221Probably the post comandant did review his troopers and their equipment before riding out of the fort on campaigns-such an inspection would have been highly necessary.

Periodically the post was visited by higher-ranking inspecting officers who subjected it to a thorough going-over. Field Marshal Calletano Pignatelly y Rubí, the Marques de Rubí, brought a staff of several junior officers to Tubac with him in December of 1766, and turned the post inside out for a few days. One of his officers made geographical observations for placing the post on his general map of Spanish North America, others took testimony from junior officers and men. The Field Marshall presumably had Captain Anza muster his handful of men for formal inspection, along with their extra clothing, equipment and horses.

That was the procedure of Comandant-Inspector Hugo O'Conor in August of 1775. He ordered acting commander Oliva to muster his company for inspection at 5 a.m. on August 2, the men to present themselves with all their arms, mounts and clothing, carrying only that which belonged to them. The remount hard was to be corralled in advance of that hour so each trooper could prove to O'Conor that he had the seven horses and a mule the New Regulations specified (O'Conor Aug. 1, 1775).

The inspection by higher officers was also an occasion for the post officers to display their royal commissions in proof of the legitimacy of their employment, as well as to 222present the files of superior orders relating to the operation of the post (ibid.). The illiterate Lt. Oliva had none to present to the Comandant-Inspector in 1775 (Oliva Aug. 1, 1775).

Not even for a Field Marshal's inspection could the entire company be mustered. While the Marques de Rubí's reports on his inspection of Tubac in 1766 contain no general roll of the troops, he clearly never saw Lt. Oliva and ten men detached to the Seri frontier, and the total number of men including officers whom he actually inspected at the post seems to have been no more than eleven (Rubí Dec. 21 & Dec. 22, 1766). This seems to have been the number Lt. Oliva could muster for Comandant Inspector O'Conor in 1775, plus nine Indian scouts. Some or all of them were guarding the remount herd. Six troopers were sick, and the rest of the slightly understrength company was out on campaign or guard duty (Oliva Aug. 1, 1775).

To check on the royal interests, the Comandant Inspector in 1775 required a report on the militia arms stored at Tubac and other things charged to the royal exchequer (O'Conor Aug. 10, 1775 No. 5).

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