The photo book shows Spanish American War soldiers preparing to leave from San Francisco for battle in the Spanish American War. It chronicles arriving in San Francisco, training, setting up and taking down camp, training and eventully leaving on the transport ships. The front cover has the title "Our Boys in Blue, a souvenir, drapped in two American flags being held by a soldier who was drawn in the inside of the "o,"- in red, white and blue.

Harry P. Todd, originally from Kansas, moved to California around 1899, following his service in the U.S. Army. While in the army he served in the Philippine Islands during the Spanish American War.The Presidio was a natural staging point for troops leaving for the Philippine Islands during the conflict (Spansih American War) because of its proximity to the finest harbor on the west coast, and possessed enough land to house and train large numbers of troops for service in the Philippines. The first soldiers left the Presidio in May 1898, and consisted of the 1st California Infantry and the 2nd Oregon Infantry Regiments. Soon soldiers from Washington, Montana, Iowa, Wyoming, Kansas, Tennessee, and Utah would be stationed at the Presidio in addition to the regular garrison. From the beginning of the war to 1900, some 80,000 men passed through the post on their way to the Philippines. At the turn of the century, San Francisco offered many attractions, but army life at the Presidio was cramped, and sickness often flared up in the temporary tent camps. This situation prompted the military to improve troop facilities and helped change the face of the Presidio over the ensuing years.

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