Qualifications of Recruits
766…All free white male persons, above the age of 18, and under 35 years, being at least 5 feet 3 inches high, who are effective, able-boded, sober, free from disease, and who have a competent knowledge of the English language, may be enlisted. This regulation, so far as it respects the height and age of the recruit, will not extend to musicians, or to soldiers who may "re-enlist" into the service, or have served honestly and faithfully a previous enlistment in the army.
768…No person under the age of 21 years is to be enlisted without the written consent of his parent, guardian, or master, if any he have.
769…Before a minor, as such, can be enlisted, the written consent of his parent, guardian, or master, must be first obtained, and appended to the enlistment. If the minor assert that he has no parent, guardian, or master, the recruiting officer, in order to prevent imposition on the public, as well as to guard himself against the penalty of the law, shall procure the best authentication of the fact, and will append to the enlistment a certificate in the following form: "I certify that the within named recruit,_______, being a minor, has been carefully questioned by me, relative to his history, parentage, and age, and that he affirms he has neither parent, guardian, or master, and that his age as recorded in his enlistment is truly given. "I further certify, that I have also made diligent enquiry in the neighborhood respecting the said minor, and that, in accepting him as a good recruit, lawfully enlisted, I have no reason to suppose that his statement is not true," ______ _______ _________ Recruiting Officer.
770…No man having a wife or children shall be enlisted in time of peace, without special authority obtained from General Head-Quarters, through the superintendent. This rule is not to apply to soldiers who "re-enlist."
771…It is the duty of the recruiting officer to be always present at the examination of the recruits, and to see that it be conducted in strict conformity with the regulations. None but men of good character, sound in body and mind, of good appearance, well formed, and fit, in every particular, to perform the duties of a soldier, will be received. The idle dependents of respectable connections will be refused, as they become troublesome by applications for discharge, and are generally the least efficient soldiers.
800…Surgeons will attend at the rendezvous at least twice a day, at such hours as the recruits, and suffer no man to pass who has not, at his examination, been stripped of all his clothes, in order to ascertain, as far as possible, that he has the perfect use of all his limbs; that he has no tumors, ulcerated legs, ruptures, nor chronic contagious affection, nor other infirmity, which may render him unfit for the active duties of the field, or be the means of introducing disease into the army: And it shall be their duty to ascertain, as far as practicable, whether the recruit is an habitual drunkard, or subject to convulsions of any kind, or has received any contusions or wounds in the head which might produce occasional insanity. With any of these defects, the man must be refused, as being unfit for service.
Did You Know?
Many officers at Fort Scott in the 1840s owned slaves. One particular slave, Anna, was rented to Hiero Wilson, post sutler. Born free and educated, she was kidnapped into slavery in 1820, In 1849, she regained her freedom, married, operated a hotel in Eastern Kansas, and later became a pioneer.