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To Brigadier General John McA. Palmer
April 25, 1927 Tientsin, China
My dear General John:
Your check for $130.00 came some time ago, but I have been so busy with excursions and alarms and packing up, that I delayed unduly in acknowledging it. You were very thoughtful in sending the money in advance of the tragedy. For tragedy it seems to be. Our last transport group from here paid fines in several instances, up to $1000.00, and practically all paid heavy duties, one officer $2240.00 on what we thought was an ordinary outlay. Several have left their household goods on the docks because of insufficient funds. A one hundred percent inspection was made in New York, everything to the last dish and doily was unpacked,—and incidentally, much linen lost.1
If the situation does not cloud up again I sail May 10th. Otherwise, I will not leave until the trouble is over. Mrs. Marshall and her mother go in any event. We proceed overland from Frisco. They go to Virginia and I go direct to Washington where I will see you, if you have not left for the summer.
I am delighted to hear that you are properly launched again in the writing game, and under such pleasing conditions. I know you are happy and I’m sure you will soon be much in the public eye. I wish I could take the remaining dozen bottles of fine champagne reposing in our pantry, and celebrate this renewal of your literary career.
With affectionate regards,
Document Copy Text Source: John McA. Palmer Papers, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
Document Format: Typed letter signed.
1. Palmer had sent Marshall $300 the previous autumn to purchase some Chinese rugs. Marshall replied that he had the merchandise. “As to bringing the rugs in. There I am afraid I must fail you, so far as custom charges go. I have to make a military certificate here regarding my freight that every thing has been purchased over a year before my departure and that it is for me. In San Francisco I have to certify or make an affidavit, that my declaration covers no articles intended as gifts or for others. All the foregoing was brought about by the `in-law’ of a Navy fellow who for a time managed a thriving business by purchasing nice things out here and shipping them by government transport to Manila and San Francisco for sale. So, in order to protect us against having our household freight unboxed in Frisco, these certificates were ordered.” (Marshall to Palmer, November 16, 1926, LC/J. McA. Palmer Papers.)
Recommended Citation: The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, ed. Larry I. Bland and Sharon Ritenour Stevens (Lexington, Va.: The George C. Marshall Foundation, 1981- ). Electronic version based on The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, vol. 1, “The Soldierly Spirit,” December 1880-June 1939 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1981), pp. 304-305.