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To General John J. Pershing
May 27, 1938 Vancouver Barracks, Washington
Your letter reached me in Montana where I was inspecting part of my Brigade.1 From there I went to Fort Lewis for maneuvers of the 3rd Division, from which I just returned last night. There also reached me in Montana a radio ordering me to Washington on the General Staff.
I got a great thrill out of receiving a letter from you, the first since your illness. But I must admit that I got even a greater thrill out of seeing you at Warren’s wedding, in Life.2 The progress you made between my last visit at Tucson and the wedding is one of the most amazing recoveries, in point of speed, that I have ever heard of. I think the editorial in “The New York Times” on this subject was probably the finest tribute you received.
I had been very much in hopes that Muriel could be persuaded to move the wedding over to Tucson at the time of her visit there. I did not visualize the miraculously rapid recovery you would make. And I am now very glad that things turned out as they did, for your demonstration was the most effective that could have been conceived to bring the public to a realization of your true character and the degree of your backbone or courage.
As I have just gotten home, there has not been time to reach definite decisions as to plans. In all probability, we will sail from San Francisco June 18th, reaching Washington about July 6th. That is, I will reach Washington, Mrs. Marshall going directly from New York to Fire Island to spend the summer in her cottage there, or in the Adirondacks.
As far as I know, or as I was told by General Craig last February, I go to the War Plans Division.
One of the few redeeming features of this deal is the fact that I will be in close touch again with you. I am fond of Craig personally, but I loathe a desk. I would not mind much, except that I have so few years left for active service that I hate to lose them to desk instead of command work.
Please tell Adamson to send me a line with some frequency as to how you are getting along and of your plans and movements.
G. C. Marshall
Document Copy Text Source: John J. Pershing Papers, General Correspondence, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
Document Format: Typed letter signed.
1. Pershing had written to Marshall on May 3: “I am just now getting around to writing briefly to a few of my friends to tell them how much their solicitude has meant to me in recent weeks, and among the first is this note to you. You cannot know how much comfort and cheer your letters and telegrams, and above all your visit to Tucson, gave me.” (Pershing to Marshall, May 3, 1938, GCMRL/G. C. Marshall Papers [Vancouver Barracks].)
2. The May 2, 1938, issue of Life featured photographs of General Pershing attending the wedding of his son and Muriel S. Richards on April 22 in New York City. (Life 4 [May 2, 1938]: 9-12.)
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. 598-599.