History and The House at Pocasset...
As a young Cape Codder, Wood was drawn to the ocean.He and his younger brother Jacob often cruised and fished off Patuisset, Onset and Monument Beach—sometimes even sailing over to Martha's Vineyard or Gay Head.
Wood grew up to have an illustrious career as a military officer and government administrator.
The vim and vigor he poured into his responsibilities was said to be a result of the healthy, rugged, salt air environment of Cape Cod.
When Geronimo was captured by the US army in 1886, Wood was one of only a handful of soldiers able to endure the year long campaign.
It’s been said that upon surrendering, Geronimo asked to meet Wood out of deference to his ability to survive the grueling campaign against the Apaches.
Wood won a Medal of Honor for carrying out operations 100 miles through hostile territory and for taking over infantry whose officers had perished.
Early in his career he served as personal physician to Presidents Cleveland and McKinley. At this time, he became friends with Theodore Roosevelt—who was then Assistant Secretary of the Navy.
During the Spanish-American War (1898), Roosevelt and Wood organized the 1st Volunteer Cavalry regiment, popularly known as the Rough Riders. Wood led the brigade to a famous victory at Kettle Hill and San Juan Heights in Cuba.
After the war, Wood served as military governor in Cuba from 1898 to 1902.
During his tenure in Cuba, Wood earned international acclaim for taking control after the Spanish pulled out. He rebuilt the country’s infrastructure—eventually handing back control to Cuba.
As far as the Cubans were concerned, he left the country much better than he found it—and for this, they never forgot him.
In August of 1903 Wood was promoted to Major General and sent to the Philippines, where he served as Governor of Moro Province until 1906. He personally fought against the Moros during the Philippine Insurrection of 1904.
He became Army Chief of Staff in 1910.
In 1921, Wood became a Republican presidential candidate and won the New Hampshire primary. However, he lost the convention.
That same year, he retired from the Army and was made Governor General of the Philippines, where he served from 1921 until his death in 1927.
During his leadership in both Cuba and the Philippines, Wood was noted for making sanitary reforms—helping to eradicate yellow fever, leprosy and beri-beri.
In his writings, Wood often makes reference to his childhood home, which he called The House at Pocasset.
The House at Pocasset was the childhood home of renowned military officer and overseas governor, Leonard Wood (1860-1927).
The Wood family moved to the house in 1867 when young Leonard was 7 years old.