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To General John J. Pershing
April 22, 1925 Tientsin, China
My dear General:
I had a letter from Bowditch last week, written on the Utah telling me something of the details of your South American tour. Your trip must have been a wonderful experience, both from the sight seeing point of view and the wonderful ovation accorded you.1
We are receiving very contorted reports of General Dawes’ affairs, particularly with regard to his absence on the day of the Warren confirmation vote.2 I would like to hear his side. Incidentally, I noticed yesterday that Pure Oil was up to thirty-nine. Mr. Stettinius fortunately, has held on to two hundred shares of my stock, and still more fortunately, he sold for me some other stock that had gone from forty-one to eighty,—sold it at the last figure and immediately thereafter it dropped to seventy-one. I am not rich, but at least I am not scared to death.3
This morning we completed the first examination attempted in the Chinese language school and I was much gratified to learn that I came out in the first section, composed of the nine students most advanced of those who started in February, 1924. In about three more months I will be ready for a Chinese war. As it is now, I can discuss treaty rights and related subjects with a fair degree of fluency. Last night my Chinese teacher arrived at the house looking very badly, and said that he was too sick to give me a lesson and had only come out because he was on his way to see a Chinese doctor. It was apparent to me that he had the beginning of a case of grippe—Severe headache, aching bones and chills. Somewhat against his will, I made him sit down, took his pulse and then gave him the usual pills and capsules, finishing the treatment with an over-dose of castor oil. He seemed delighted to get out of the house, but this morning reported to me that I was a wonderful doctor, but, “Please what was in that last drink you gave me, I had a very bad night and I am surprised I feel so well this morning.”
I rather expect to learn soon that you have gone to France, and I hope you are able to get down to work on your memoirs. Roger Scaife and General Carter wrote me that General Bullard and General Liggett were both publishing books. Am Curious to see what they are like.
With warm regards to your sisters when you see them, believe me, always,
G. C. Marshall, Jr.
Document Copy Text Source: John J. Pershing Papers, General Correspondence, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
Document Format: Typed letter signed.
1. Pershing replied: “I think that from the standpoint of international relations it was very beneficial. Without exception the people in the various capitals in South America and other places were most cordial and oftentimes very enthusiastic in their reception to our party.” (Pershing to Marshall, May 29, 1925, LC/J. J. Pershing Papers [General Correspondence].)
2. Newly inaugurated Vice-President Charles G. Dawes’s sharply critical public statements on certain Senate rules, particularly those permissive of filibustering, had earned him considerable criticism from some senators. (See Dawes, Notes as Vice President, 1928-1929 [Boston: Little, Brown, 1935], pp. 54-71.)
“My own private opinion,” Pershing observed, “is that he has set up a straw man to knock down principally for the purpose of getting himself talked about, and to have an excuse to travel around the country carrying his fight into various states where senators are to be re-elected. He seems not to discriminate between Republican and Democratic senators and as the Republicans’ chances for retaining control of the Senate are very slim, Dawes is getting himself into quite a little bit of hot water with the party on this account. However, it is amusing to stand on the side lines and see these people play politics.” (Pershing to Marshall, May 29, 1925, LC/J. J. Pershing Papers [General Correspondence].)
On March 10 the Senate had defeated, 40 to 40, the nomination by President Coolidge of C. B. Warren to be attorney general. Dawes arrived in the Senate chamber too late to cast the deciding vote in Warren’s favor. Coolidge attempted to raise the point of separation of legislative and executive branch powers, but Warren was rejected again on March 16.
3. On Marshall’s Pure Oil stock, see Papers of George Catlett Marshall, #1-183 [1: 207-8]).
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. 275-276.