Table of Contents

AZTEC CLUB of  1847

FOUNDED OCTOBER 13, 1847

INCORPORATED DECEMBER 29, 1892

RE-INCORPORATED JULY  6, 1906

 

Founded in the City of Mexico, on October 13, 1847. Incorporated under the laws of the United States, December 29, 1892. Re-incorporated in perpetuity under the laws of the United States. July 6, 1906.

CHRONICLE

On the 13th of October, 1847, as soon as the United States Army was quietly established in the City of Mexico, a meeting of officers was called with a view of forming a Club and opening a club-house for the entertainment of its members and their guests while in the city.

It is not known that any record exists of the early pro­ceedings of the Club thus formed, but the following were among the promoters or took an active part as club officers from the start:

General Quitman, as President; Captain J. B. Grayson and Colonel C. F. Smith, as First Vice-Presidents; Capt. J. B. Magruder, as Second Vice-President; Lieutenant R. P. Hammond. as Treasurer; Captain George Deas and Lieutenant H. Coppee, as Secretaries.

The original home of the Club was the handsome resi­dence of Senior Boca Negra, who had been formerly minis­ter to the United States from Mexico, and was located on one of the streets leading out of the Calle Plateros, and not far from the headquarters of General Scott, Com­mander-in-Chief.

On the 13th of January 1848, a Constitution was adopted and a new election was held. The initiation fee was made $20, payable in advance. General Winfield Scott and Chaplain John McCarty were elected honorary mem­bers.

On March 3d, 1848, by resolution of the Club, a Con­stitution, with a list of the members, was printed at the office of the “American Star,” in the City of Mexico.

A meeting of the Aztec Club was held in May 1848, when it was determined that no satisfactory plan could he then proposed to continue the existence of the Club, after returning to the United States; but, “desiring to preserve some lasting memorial of the pleasure and ad­ vantages derived from this institution that may serve for all time as an additional bond of friendship and brother­ hood among its members,” it was 

“Resolved, That the organization of the Club shall con­tinue with its present officers for a period of five years from the 14th September 1847.”

At the time of the withdrawal of the Army from Mexico, the Club consisted of 160 members and honorary members.

In 1852 an election of new officers \Yas made accord­ingly, but no regular meeting of the Club took place until September 1867, when officers were elected, a place and day for the next annual meeting named a list of the original members ordered to be printed and distributed, and a commemoration badge to be designed for trans­ mission to living members and to the families of those deceased.

The ac1ion taken at this meeting was submitted to the survivors of the Aztec Club and confirmed by the votes returned to the Secretary.

At future regular meetings resolutions have been adopted, in accordance with Article XII of the Constitution of 1847, as follows:

In 1871 it was decided to admit to membership officers who may apply, having served in any part of Mexico dur­ ing the \Var, after nomination and election by the Club.

In 1882 it was decided that officers killed in battle or who died of wounds in Mexico before the formation of the Club might, upon application of a son or nearest blood relative, be admitted to the roll of membership, to be rep­ resented by the son or nearest blood relative, after his nomination and election by the Club.

In 1887 it was decided that officers now deceased ·who served in Mexico during the war. never members of the Club, but eligible to membership if living, may be admitted to the roll of membership, each to be represented by his nearest blood relative, when duly elected by the Club, upon the written application of such blood relative approved by two members to whom he is known.

In October 1888, it was deemed proper, in view of the expressed desire of the original Club, in May 1848, “to preserve for all time some lasting memorial that may serve as an additional bond of friendship and brotherhood among its members;” and the decided continuance of the Aztec Club of 1847 in “perpetuity,” as expressed in the Consti­tution of 1887, and again in the revised Constitution of 1888, that the Club should be known-

  • 1st. As the “Aztec Club of 1847.”
  • 2d. That it is to be continued in “perpetuity.”
  • 3d. That the basis of “membership” is personal service in some part of Mexico, “as an officer, during the war with that country;” and

That the lists of members should embrace the names of-

  • 1st. All members were admitted in Mexico in 1848.
  • 2d. All admitted and who may be admitted under
  • the resolution of 1871.
  • 3d. All admitted and who may be admitted under the resolution of 1883.
  • 4th. All admitted and who may be admitted under the resolution of 1887.

In 1889 the Constitution was altered by adding the words “Navy or Marine Corps” after the word “Army,” in the second line of Article II, on membership, so as to read “as an officer of the Army, Navy or Marine Corps.”

At the meeting on October 13, 1892, it was decided to incorporate this organization, and accordingly, on the 29th day of December 1892, upon application of Peter Val­entine Hagner, Stewart Van Vliet, De Lancey Floyd­

]ones, John Darragh Wilkins, Thornton Alexander Jenkins, James H. Watmough, Theodorus B. M. Mason, Mark Burckle Hatch, Richard Weightman, Richard Graham Davenport, Horatio Gates Gibson, Randall Hagner, and Christopher Colon Augur, a certificate of incorporation as “The Aztec Club of 1847” was obtained under the Revised Statutes of the United States relating to the District of Columbia.

1893. At the Meeting held in St. Louis, Mo., on October 13, 1893, the Secretary reported that during the year the “Army and Navy Club” of Washington, D. C., extended its eligibility to the membership so as to include the mem­bers of the Order of the Cincinnati and Loyal Legion, those of the Aztec Club of 1847.

A resolution to change the button of recognition from enameled metal to one of silk, similar in size and form to that now worn by the Military Order of the Loyal Legion, the colors of the ribbon to be green, white, and red as in the present metal button was proposed and was presented at the next Annual Meeting held in New York City, Oc­ tober 13. r894, for final action. was lost on being put to vote.

 1894. The last paragraph of Article II of the Consti­tution was altered to read in the first line “three ( 3) months” instead of “ten (TO) months” so that in the future the paragraph will read: “Should an elected applicant neglect for three (3) months after the election to send his acceptance and pay the prescribed fee his name shall be reported to the Club by the Treasurer for its action at the next regular meeting, and unless a good reason for such neglect is presented, his name shall be dropped”-

1895. A resolution taxing all members two dollars per annum for the period of five years and giving them the privilege of paying the lump sum of ten dollars in lieu of a yearly subscription, thereby releasing them from all future taxation, which sum with any other available funds shall be invested in some well-established security or bonds, which security shall be placed in trust in such Trust Company in New York City as the President, Secretary and Treas­urer of the Club may adopt; the interest of said funds only to be used in defraying the Annual expenses of the Club, the principal of said fund in no case to be used except for re-investment or upon the dissolution of the Aztec Club, when it shall be divided among those taxed or their suc­ cessors, was adopted.

A communication from Major Theodore J. Eckerson, U. S. Army, presenting to the Club the original General Order No. 30, of General Zachary Taylor, a reduced copy of which is inserted in this register, was received.

1896. The Amendment to Article III of the Constitu­tion relating to furnishing diplomas to Members who shall have lost theirs or who are not already entitled to them under the present Constitution, etc., was adopted.

The Amendment to Article IV, section 5, of the Con­stitution relating to the appointment of Assistants to the Secretary and Treasurer, was adopted.

The Amendment to Article VIII of the Constitution sanctioning informal gatherings of members unable to be present at the regular Annual Meeting of the Club was adopted.

The Amendment to Article II of the By-Laws relating to invitations to guests to the Annual Banquet was adopted.

1897. The Club celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of its formation with the largest attendance since it transferred its home to the United States. There were thirty-five members present. Among these were Col. Parmenas T. Turnley, Admiral Bancroft Gherardi, General Fitz John Porter, Col. De Lancey Floyd-Jones, General John P. Hatch, Col. Charles Thorburn, Chief Engineer Shock General Francis E. Pinto, General Robert Murray, Gen. W. W. H. Davis, and General Egbert L. Viele. all of whom saw service in ‘the Mexican War.

A commemorative bronze medal with appropriate de­ signs, executed by Tiffany & Co., was prepared for the occasion and distributed gratuitously to all members, not in arrears to the Treasury of the Club.

1898. Amendment to Article II § 5 ‘ii 2 of the Constitu­tion relating to avoidance of delay in the election of Can­didates for admission to the Club and vesting in the Com­mittee on Admissions the power to elect such Candidates at quarterly meetings of said Committee, was adopted.

In May the dies for the Semi-Centennial Bronze Medal were destroyed as per instructions given at the last Annual Meeting.

1899. The resolution proposed at the meeting, October 13, 1898, to place in the Cullum Memorial Hall at West Point, N. Y., a bronze Memorial Tablet to the three Cap­ron’s, Members of the Club, who died in the Service, was amended to include the names of all officers, Members of the Club, who were killed in battle or who died of wounds received in the line of duty.

The Secretary was ordered to prepare, for distribution among the members, the tri-annual Register containing the Constitution and List of Members.

1900. The Committee was appointed to secure a fund for the erection in Cullum Memorial Hall, at West Point, N. Y., of a bronze memorial tablet, to the memory of those members of the Aztec Club of 1847 who were “killed in battle or who died of, wounds received in action,” reported that the tablet was placed in Cullum Hall, June 12, 1900.

Article 2, Section 5, Constitution of 1900, was so amended as to read:

“In view of the fact that the Club is in such strong financial condition, it is directed that all the Annual Dues hereafter collected be applied to the General Fund, for such use as the Club may direct.” 

1901. The Club has been notified through the Sec­retary of the Tablet Committee that the tablet erected in Cullum Hall in 1900 conflicted, in some details, with the provisions of General Cullum’s will, in that it memorialized certain officers who were• non-graduates of the Military Academy. and that unless these errors were corrected the tablet would have to be removed from Cullum Hall, the Club voted to remove the tablet and erect it in some suit­ able place “after adding to the names on the tablet the names of all entitled to such memorialization.” A commit­ tee was appointed to secure subscriptions for a new tablet. Amendment to Article 2, Section 5, Constitution of 1900, providing that a successor to a primary member, who applies for membership within five (5) years from the date of the death of the primary member, shall pay an initiation

a fee of five (5) dollars, was adopted.

Amendment to Article 2, Section 5, Constitution of

1900, relating to the payment of dues, etc., was adopted.

1902. The Secretary reported that permission had been obtained from the Superintendent of the Military Academy, West Point, N. Y., to place the memorial tablet in Cadet Chapel and that the tablet was transferred from Cullum Ha11 on December r2, 1901.

Amendment to Article 3, Constitution of 1900, pro­ posed at the meeting of October 12, 1901, and printed in the proceedings of that year, was adopted.

1903. At the meeting of October 13, 1903, a committee was appointed, by unanimous vote. “to prepare and perfect articles of re-incorporation of the Aztec Club of 1847 in order that the terms of incorporation may be perpetual.”

1904. The Secretary reported that the new memorial tablet was placed in Cadet Chapel at West Point, in Sep­tember, 1904.

The Committee on Re-incorporation and Charter Per­petuation, appointed at the last meeting, having presented the Certificate of Re-incorporation of the “Aztec Club of 1847,” the said Certificate was approved and the Com­mittee was ordered to continue in power to obtain the necessary signatures to the certificate of re-incorporation and secure for the Aztec Club of 1847 a perpetual charter.

A recommendation to fix upon a permanent home for the Club was by resolution ordered to be submitted by the Secretary to the members of the Club for their opinion as to its advisability, etc.

1905. The Secretary reported that in response to the request in the last year’s proceedings for the views of the members of the Club as to the advisability of a permanent home for the Club, three replies were received.

1906. The revised Constitution of the Aztec Club of 1847, published in the proceedings of last year, was, on resolution, approved and accepted, and a Charter re-incor­porating the Aztec Club of 1847 in perpetuity, under the Revised Statutes of the United States relating to the Dis­trict of Columbia, was obtained Jn]y 6, 1906.

1907. The Secretary was ordered to prepare for dis­tribution among the members the Register containing th<:’ Constitution and List of Members.

1908. A resolution providing those other sons or nearest blood relatives of a primary member may be elected to membership in the Club as associate members were adopted.

A resolution permitting all members of the Club to·wear the colors of the Club on a narrow bar was adopted.

GENERAL TAYLOR’S ORDER NO. 30.

The original of this order was presented to the Aztec Club by Major Theodore J. Eckerson, U. S. Army. In his letter of presentation, he says: “This general order was carried in my knapsack on the marches from Corpus Christi to the Rio Grande; from Matamoras to Camargo, and thence to Monterey; from Monterey to Tampico; from Tampico to Vera Cruz; from Vera Cruz to the City of Mexico, and thence back to the coast. It was pres­ ent at Palo Alto, Resaca de la Palma, Monterey, Vera Cruz, Cerro Gordo, Contreras, Churubusco, Chapultepec, and the capture of the City of Mexico.”

GENERAL TAYLOR’S ORDER NO. 30.

The original of this order was presented to the Aztec Club by Major Theodore J. Eckerson, U. S. Army. In his letter of presentation, he says: “This general order was carried in my knapsack on the marches from Corpus Christi to the Rio Grande; from Matamoras to Camargo, and thence to Monterey; from Monterey to Tampico; from Tampico to Vera Cruz; from Vera Cruz to the City of Mexico, and thence back to the coast. It was pres­ ent at Palo Alto, Resaca de la Palma, Monterey, Vera Cruz, Cerro Gordo, Contreras, Churubusco, Chapultepec, and the capture of the City of Mexico.”

CONSTITUTION OF THE AZTEC CLUB OF 1847.

Revised and Adopted October 16, 1889.

Article I. Object.

This Association, formed and founded in the City of Mexico, in the year 1847, by officers of the United States Army, shall be continued in perpetuity as “The Aztec Club of 1847,” with a view to cherish the memories and keep alive the traditions that cluster about the names of those officers who took part in the Mexican War of 1846, ’47, and ’48.
Officers of the U. S. Navy and Marine Corps who served in Mexico during the war are equally eliable with Army officers.

Article II. Membership.

The basis of Primary Membership was personal service as an officer of the Army, Navy, or Marine Corps in some parts of Mexico during the war with that country in 1846, ’47, and ’48, the Roll of Members to be “continued in perpetuity ” under this Constitution shall consist

First. Of those officers who inaugurated the Aztec Club in the City of Mexico on the 13th of October, 1847, numbering 160 members, and the two honorary members named in Articles I and IV of the Constitution published in March, 1848; and,

Second. Of those officers who by resolution of 1871 became eligible to membership since that date, having served in some part of Mexico during the war with that country, and who have been or may hereafter be duly elected members. Thenamesofmembersadmitteduponpersonal application will be enrolled as Primary Members on a list (Number One) to be arranged permanently, in numerical series, in the order of date of admittance—not to be altered except by future additions or by dismissals
for cause.

Third. To extend to the memory of comrades killed in battle in Mexico
or who died of wounds received in Mexico prior to the formation of our Club, all the honorable distinction pertaining to membership in the Club, it was resolved in 1883 that upon application by the eldest son or nearest lineal descendant of the officer so killed such son or lineal descendant may be eligible to membership as representing his dead relative. When such representative has been duly elected and qualified, the name of the dead officer and the battle where he was killed should be entered on List Number One, in a separate group with his representative, in the order of election.

Fourth. As provided in 18S7, the son or nearest blood relative of any deceased officer who never himself applied for membership (though eligible thereto because of personal service in Mexico during the war) may make a written application for admission as the representative of his father or blood relative upon nomination by two members to whom he is known. If elected and qualified, the name of such dead officer shall also be enrolled on list Number One, in the same numerical series, in a separate group, and in the order of the date of admittance of the lineal descendant.

FUTURE ACTIVE MEMBERSHIP.

Fifth. To provide for the continuance of the Club in conformity with the resolution of September 1874, each Primary Member admitted upon personal application may nominate as his successor his son or a blood relative, who during the life of the Primary shall be known as an Associate Member, and entitled to all the privileges of the Club except that of voting, and upon the death of the Primary shall be entitled as his representatives of full membership. Should a Primary die without having named his successor, his son [first) or nearest blood relative [next] may, on written application, be nominated as his representative b}’ two members to whom he is known; but no one proposed for an Associate Member or as the representative of a deceased member shall be voted for until the Examining Committee shall report him eligible and qualified to join the Club.

If minors are proposed, their names will be retained for future action until they attain a majority.

When the Primary or Representative Member has failed to nominate his successor, then the prospective Representative Member shall be the nearest in blood, a male relative of the deceased Primary Member, if there be one qualified to become an acceptable representative of said Primary.

Election of members will take place only at the regular meetings of the Club. At least thirteen affirmative votes (in person or by letter) shall be required to admit the applicant, while two negative votes will reject him.

A Representative Member may present a blood relative of the Primary Member he represents as his own associate, and, if elected, he will be entitled to the privileges of an Associate Member, and upon the death of the representative may himself become a Representative Member, and in like manner nominate as his associate the nearest living blood relative of the dead Primary Mem!)er, if there be one qualified to become an acceptable representative of said Primary.

When no such lineal descendant of the Primary Member exists, the succession for such member of the Aztec Club will cease.

Should the elected applicant neglect for three (3) months after the election to send his acceptance and pay the prescribed fee, his name shall be reported to the Club by the Treasurer for its action at the next regular meeting, and unless a good reason for such neglect is presented his name shall be dropped.

Article III. Insignia of Membership.

Each member shall be entitled to receive a medal struck from the dies belonging to the Club, and also a diploma from the plate in its possession. These medals and diplomas are to descend to the duly elected representatives of the deceased members. The medals are to be worn at all regular meetings.

The dies for the medal and the plate for the diploma shall be retained in the custody of the Treasurer, and shall be used only for multiplying copies in compliance with the vote of the club. A tri-colored button authorized by the Club may be furnished at cost to each Member and Associate Member.

Article W.—Officers.

1. The officers of the Club shall be a President and a Vice-President, Treasurer and a Vice-Treasurer, a Secretary and an Assistant Secretary.
2. Tlie Vice-President shall be elected annually*, and at the end of his term of service shall become the President of the Club for the next year. 3. InthecaseofdeathorresignationofthePresidentorTreasurer, the Vice-President or Vice-Treasurer shall immediately succeed to the respective chief office without other elections, and at the next regular meeting, all vacant offices shall be filled.

4. Should the office of Secretary become vacant, the Assistant Secretary
shall take charge of the records until the position is filled by the election of a Secretary.

5. The Secretary may appoint this Assistant from either the members or the Associate Members of the Club. Allotherofficersshallbechosenby ballot.

ARTICLE V. Duties of the Treasurer.

The Treasurer shall be held responsible for the funds of the Club, shall disburse them under its direction, and report yearly the Club’s financial condition.

ARTICLE VI. Duties of the Secretary.

The Secretar}’ shall keep a record of the Club’s proceedings, conduct its correspondence, notify members at least one month in advance of its regular and special meetings, keep and affix its seal, preserve its archives, and perform such other duties appropriate to the office of Secretary as the Executive Committee may direct.

Article VII —Executive Committee.

There shall be a permanent Executive Committee of the Club, to consist of its President and Vice-President, Treasurer and Secretary, and three other members to be appointed and removable by the President, to actfortheClubintheintervalsbetweenitsregularmeetings. Three of the Executive Committee designated by the President shall constitute a subcommittee to examine and report to the Club at its regular meetings upon qualifications of applicants for admission.

Article VIII. Quorum.

The business may be transacted at any duly appointed meeting of the Club, provided the number of members present shall not be less than eleven (11), and that not less than nine (9) affirmative votes be given to carry any measure proposed.

Article IX. Suspension of Members.

The President of the Club shall take notice of any irregularities that may disturb the harmony of its social or business meetings. Should his admonitions be unheeded, he may suspend the offending member from the privileges of the Club until his action shall be reversed by a majority vote of its members at an annual meeting.

ARTICLE X. Alterations.

Any proposition to alter this Constitution must be made at a regular meeting of the Club, action thereon to be taken at the next regular meeting.

BY-LAWS.

I. Order of Business.
1 Meeting called to order.
2. Roll-call.
3. Minutesofthepreviousmeetingreadanddisposedof. 4. Report of Secretary.
5. ReportofTreasurer.
6. Reportofcommittees.
7. Unfinished business.
8. Candidatesforelectiontomembershipconsidered.
9. Election of officers.
10. Newbusinessconsidered.
11. Timeandplaceofnextmeetingdecided.
12. Adjournment.

II. Guests.

Guests not exceeding five in number may be admitted to the annual banquets of the Club by special invitation of the Executive Committee. The expense incurred on account of a guest must be borne by the member at whose instance he is invited.

III. Archives.

Each member is requested to send to the Secretary his photograph, bearing his autograph, and also a short biographical sketch of himself. These will be preserved among the archives of the Club in the hands of the Secretary.

IV. Post-OfficeAddresses.

Members must keep the Secretary informed of their post-office address.

Amendments to the Constitution and By-Laws Proposed at the Anual Meetings October 13, 1895, for Action at the Next Annual Meeting.

Article II [MEMBERSHIP]

is so amended that the resolutions passed by the Aztec Club at its Annual Meeting, October 13, 1894, read as follows:

“Resolved by the Aztec Club, That, in view of the fact that the Older Members of the Club are fast disappearing, and the sources of revenue likely to be seriously impaired, it is directed that each Member be taxed in the sum of two dollars {$2) per annum for the period of five years, which sum, with any other available funds, shall be invested in some well-established security or bonds, which security shall be placed in trust in such trust company in New York City as the President, Secretary, and Treasurer of the Club may adopt; the interest of said fund only to be used in defraying the annual expenses of the Club, the principal of said fund in no case to be used except for re-investment or upon dissolution of the Aztec Club, when it shall be divided among those taxed or their successors.

“It is further resolved, That in case any Member pays in a lump sum of ten dollars ($10) before the expiration of twelve months from the date of the passage of this resolution he shall be exempt from all future taxation or dues.”

shall form a part of the Constitution of the Aztec Club of 1847.

All Members elected after the passage of the above-mentioned resolutions, viz., October 13, 1894, to be subject to the same and to have the privilege of the last clause, provided payment is made within three months from the date of notification of election.

Any Member elected after the above resolutions have been incorporated into the Constitution who shall neglect or refuse to pay such dues, after being twice notified at intervals of five months, may, upon a vote of a majority of the Members present at the Annual Meeting, be dropped from the rolls of the Club, unless a satisfactory explanation is made of the delinquency or delay in payment.

Article III [Insignia of membership]

is hereby modified, so that the Secretary shall, upon application, issue a parchment diploma to Members who from any cause have accidentally lost theirs or who are not already entitled to them under the present Constitution, always provided the Members so applying shall pay to the Treasurer of the Club the sum of $2. In the case of Associate Members, or successors to Members, the diplomas are to be filled in with their class as above indicated.