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To General John J. Pershing
February 27, 1940 Washington, D.C.
I returned this morning from the Salvation Army dinner in New York, where I sat next to Evangeline Booth. She looked even more a soldier than when I last saw her in Washington in about 1923. She spoke of you a number of times during the evening, and with great admiration. I know you would be interested in her reaction; she tells me that she still rides ten or fifteen miles a day.
Katherine reached home at midnight last night, while I was in New York. She has been at Miami Beach and Key West for a month and has returned much rested and the gainer by four pounds. Unfortunately she arrived in the midst of a snow-storm and with three or four dinners that we cannot evade.
I have only been back a short time from my trip to Panama and Puerto Rico. Incidentally, I sent you a radio from the plane while flying over the Candado-Vanderbilt beach at San Juan, and about fifteen minutes later received an acknowledgment from the Army operator in Tucson to the effect that he had telephoned it to Miss May. I spent the night with Katherine at Miami Beach, and was driven away from there a day ahead of time by approaching bad weather; she showed me a gracious note from you, in which you referred to my not stopping at Tucson when I was flying East the other day. The reason was I was racing against time to catch the Cavalry Division before it got in from the field at El Paso—and got there just fifteen minutes ahead of its arrival in the post, and to keep ahead of an approaching wave of bad weather. The snow was three hours behind me at El Paso, two hours after me at San Antonio, where I inspected the Second Division in the field; only thirty minutes off my tail at Barksdale Field in Louisiana, and as I was sitting down to dinner at Benning the weather report indicated a new cold front from the Gulf was coming in. So we left the guests before dinner was served and reached Washington two hours and fifty minutes later. Three hours after our arrival here, snow and sleet and a real blizzard developed.
As things now stand, I will leave here Thursday afternoon or early Friday morning for San Francisco, to take a China Clipper Saturday for Hawaii. I will leave Hawaii on the return trip March 10th or 11th, but will have to rush straight to Washington to appear before the Senate Appropriations Committee. I was before the House Appropriations Committee yesterday afternoon, as well as a few days ago; this morning I was before the House Military Committee. In the intervals I answer the `phone or receive Senators or Representatives, all with an iron in the fire and some of them raising hell over troop dispositions. It is pretty hard to manage what amounts to a minor mobilization on a peace-time basis, at the same time struggling against the cuts that public opinion is now forcing on Congress.
Please give my warm regards to Miss May.
G. C. Marshall
Document Copy Text Source: John J. Pershing Papers, General Correspondence, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
Document Format: Typed letter signed.
Recommended Citation: ThePapers of George Catlett Marshall, ed.Larry I. Bland, Sharon Ritenour Stevens, and Clarence E. Wunderlin, Jr.(Lexington, Va.: The George C. Marshall Foundation, 1981- ). Electronic version based on The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, vol. 2, “We Cannot Delay,” July 1, 1939-December 6, 1941 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1986), pp. 172-173.