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November 16th 1949
The Baltimore Sun
(Copyright © Reprinted with permission from the Baltimore Sun)
Maj. Gen. Washington Bowie, Jr.
There still are Baltimoreans who recall Washington Bowie, Jr., when, at the close of the first, he rode in a parade down Baltimore street at the head of the 110th Field Artillery of the 29th Division. His erect posture and his perfect control of a spirited mount bespoke the soldier he was.
No doubt it is the way Major General Bowie would like best to be remembered. He was a competent lawyer and serious in performing civic duties in Baltimore county. But his heart was centered on the military. For some 40 years he saw active service in the Maryland National Guard.
When the Guard was mustered into the Federal service in the first World War the ax was applied coldly and relentlessly by the Regular Army on Guard officers above the rank of major. Washington Bowie then was a Colonel. But he met this most exacting test and held down his job. His accomplishment was the more remarkable because he had been trained as an infantryman then was shifted to the command of a field artillery outfit. There could be no more impressive evidence of his versatility and mastery of the soldiers trade.
General Bowie was the senior among a group of Maryland group officers who provided their competence in actual war in 1918 and who kept the standard of the Guard exceptionally high until the outbreak of World War II. His example was an inspiration to those junior to him. Though he had been retired for age before the second conflict he deserves much of the credit for establishing the tradition of efficiency the 29th Division carried with it into the last war. To borrow the military phrase with which General Bowie was familiar and which needs no embellishments, he “accomplished his mission.”