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The Viso Fort

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The Viso Fort
Destination: Santiago de Cuba
The Viso Fort - Address: El Caney. Santiago de Cuba.

The Viso Fort. The day July 1, 1898 were chosen by the general Shafter to launch to the 5to Body of Army against Santiago de Cuba. From the previous day, the North American troops and their Cuban allies had been taking positions to this side of the city, with the intention of beginning the attack to the sunrise.

The 5to Body was organized in three Divisions and two independent Brigades that about eighteen thousand men summed. El Caney was a small leaning defensive position on the outpost of El Viso, without artillery neither machine guns, with a garnish of 527 men to the general's control Vara del Rey.

The mission commended it to the 2da Division of the general Lawton, supported by the artillery. The combat began, with the first light of the day, submitting to the fire gunner the edifications and the small wooden outposts of El Caney. One hour later, the first wave of attackers that was stopped by the closed discharges of the Spanish soldiers' advanced.

At noon, the general's Bates brigade had incorporated to the combat, with those that North American troops the 60.000 men overcame, but the defenders of El Caney were willing to give a lesson the Spaniards fight of how. The waves of attackers were occurred in coordinated movements, but the discharges of the Spanish musketry were also coordinated and harmonic; one and another time they were rejected. The batteries changed their position and it approached to El Viso, nucleus of the resistance, and their fire began to beat with effectiveness the outpost whose walls began to be demolished by the continuous impacts that they received.

At three in the afternoon, Lawton received order to abandon El Caney and to advance on San Juan, but irritated because of the brave defence of the Spaniards he decided to continue the attack. El Viso was already almost destroyed, they were more than four in the afternoon, and a new rabid assault was stopped before the walls of the outpost. Vara del Rey continues, in spite of their wounds, haranguing their men. At five o'clock, El Viso is taken. Only dead and some wounded find the assailants there. The artillery is placed in the same one to be able to beat the houses of the town and the trenches. The resistance is already useless and the few defenders that are, retire orderly to Santiago de Cuba. There it was without life the general Vara del Rey and most of their soldiers.

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