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To Edward R. Stettinius, Jr.
October 9, 1945 [Washington, D.C.]
Thanks for your letter of September thirtieth. I appreciate very much all the kind things you have to say about me.1
As matters now stand I hope to be released from my duties by the end of the month. I had thought I could get out by the first of October but the President would not come across.
We are all distressed over Frank McCarthy’s dilemma. I see an announcement in the press today that he is to be released on account of sickness and mention of General Clay as a possible successor. However, I think, on the inside, that the Clay business will not materialize.2
I note your comment about the receipt of “some letters from certain people” following my retirement. I shall be very much interested, of course, and I am profoundly grateful to you for your interest and activation.3
Mrs. Marshall heard the other day that Virginia and the boys were coming back;4 that you could not get desirable accommodations for them in England. I am sorry that they are to have this disappointment and that you will not have them with you but I shall be delighted to see them back here. I suppose Virginia will spend the winter either in Washington or Richmond in order to facilitate schooling.
I shall be looking for you on your visit in the next few weeks and we must get together for a long discussion. Initially, save me a date for luncheon here at my office and another for Katherine and me to dine you together.
The most encouraging thing we hear from overseas in the present international state of complication relates to your activities and the United Nations Preparatory Commission. They tell me your aggressive and tactful leadership is really leading to something of great importance.
Looking forward to seeing you soon,
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Pentagon Office Collection, Selected Materials, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed letter.
1. Stettinius, who was in London as the U.S. delegate to the United Nations Preparatory Commission, had written that “the action that the Congress will take in honoring you will receive the applause of the whole world. No news that I have received in a long time has made me happier.” (Stettinius to Marshall, September 30, 1945, GCMRL/G. C. Marshall Papers [Pentagon Office, Selected].) Joint Resolutions had been introduced into the Senate on September 19 (S. J. Res. 96) and the House on September 20 (H. J. Res. 243) providing that a Thanks of Congress medal be presented to Marshall. The resolutions were later amended to include Admiral King. A vote in the House on the resolution was blocked by a member who objected that the honor should be postponed until after Marshall’s testimony before the Pearl Harbor investigating committee. H. J. Res. 243 was passed and signed by President Truman on March 22, 1946.
2. Concerning Eisenhower’s opinion of the idea of transferring Lucius D. Clay from his post in Germany, see note 8, Marshall to Eisenhower, September 7, 1945, Papers of George Catlett Marshall, #5-226 [5: 297].
3. “At the time you become a country gentleman you will receive some letters from certain people following up on the idea that you and I have discussed from time to time. Of course your accepting a few directorships will have to be very carefully chosen from the standpoint of public relations, but when I see you perhaps we can have a word about which ones.” (Stettinius to Marshall, September 30, 1945, GCMRL/G. C. Marshall Papers [Pentagon Office, Selected].)
4. Marshall was referring to Stettinius’s wife, Virginia, and their twelve-year-old twin sons, Wallace and Joseph.
Recommended Citation: ThePapers 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. 5, “The Finest Soldier,” January 1, 1945-January 7, 1947 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003), pp. 326-327.