Like any good officer, Colonel Hazen was concerned about the well-being of his men living on the Dakota prairie. Troubled by the lack of regular religious services at Fort Buford, Hazen petitioned Washington for a post chaplain on this date in 1874. But he was not interested in just any chaplain. He had no time for what he described as the typical "indolent" Army chaplains who "drew slim audiences" and "brought their profession into ridicule." Hazen wanted a young man from a distinguished theological institution, who gave engaging sermons and was firmly settled in his theological opinions. Anything less would fail to bring his men into a church.
If these requirements could not be fulfilled, then Colonel Hazen didn't want anyone. Such demands were obviously difficult to meet.
It took over three years before a post chaplain finally arrived at Fort Buford.
Written by Christina Sunwall
Innis, Ben. Sagas of the Smoky-Water: True Stories Reflecting
Historical Aspects of the Missouri-Yellowstone Confluence Region,
1805-1910. Williston, ND: Centennial Press, 1985.