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==Military service==
 
==Military service==
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He was later commissioned assistant paymaster 15 March 1894. He became Fleet Paymaster for the US Atlantic Fleet, 1908–1910, acquiring that position in San Francisco when the fleet, later known as the Great White Fleet, was at that port of call during its 1907-1909 round-the-world cruise. It is believed that $500,000 (1909 face value) US Navy funds that were lost aboard [[RMS Republic|RMS ''Republic'']] when that vessel sank in 1909 were requisitioned by Fleet Paymaster McGowan. The funds were to be delivered to the Fleet at Gibraltar. On 1 July 1914, he was appointed Paymaster General and Chief of the [[Bureau of Supplies and Accounts]] with the rank of [[Rear admiral (United States)|rear admiral]]. Holding that office until his retirement in 1920, he was awarded the [[Navy Distinguished Service Medal|Distinguished Service Medal]] for the preparation and execution of plans to maintain the fleets during [[World War I]].
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He was later commissioned assistant paymaster 15 March 1894. He became Fleet Paymaster for the US Atlantic Fleet, 1908–1910, acquiring that position in San Francisco when the fleet, later known as the Great White Fleet, was at that port of call during its 1907-1909 round-the-world cruise. It is believed that $500,000 (1909 face value) US Navy funds that were lost aboard [[RMS Republic|RMS ''Republic'']] when that vessel sank in 1909 were requisitioned by Fleet Paymaster McGowan. The funds were to be delivered to the Fleet at Gibraltar. On 1 July 1914, he was appointed [[Paymaster General]] and Chief of the [[Bureau of Supplies and Accounts]] with the rank of [[Rear admiral (United States)|rear admiral]]. Holding that office until his retirement in 1920, he was awarded the [[Navy Distinguished Service Medal|Distinguished Service Medal]] for the preparation and execution of plans to maintain the fleets during [[World War I]].
   
 
Following his military career he became the first Highway Commissioner of South Carolina. He did not drive but managed to travel the world three times over.
 
Following his military career he became the first Highway Commissioner of South Carolina. He did not drive but managed to travel the world three times over.

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