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To Joseph K. Carson1
August 1, 1939 [Washington, D.C.]
I just this moment received your wire of congratulations, which is highly appreciated. However, I am inclined to think you are confused as to dates. While I have been Acting Chief of Staff since July 1st, I will continue to be a lowly brigadier general until September 1st, when I become a permanent major general and a temporary full general. Please don’t pun on the “full.” These dates are very important matters, because among other things, they mean a better understanding with the paymaster.2 My present job on my present pay produces quite a depression. All this, of course, is casual comment for your eye alone.
I want to get out to the Northwest again this fall, with a day or two in Portland, but I can not tell now whether this is going to be possible of arrangement. Most confidentially, I have a reservation on a China clipper September 27th, and another reservation on another clipper leaving Hawaii October 3d for the States. I am hoping that possibly I may be able to inspect Portland on my way east, but my present engagements in October will make this difficult.
With warmest regards to Mrs. Carson and the family,
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. Carson was the mayor of Portland, Oregon. On December 5, 1938, Marshall had written to Brigadier General George Grunert, who had succeeded him as commanding officer at Vancouver Barracks, across the Columbia River from Portland, that Carson was “a fine fellow” who could be “of great help.” (Papers of George Catlett Marshall, #1-532, 1: 661.)
2. Marshall’s pay and allowances as a brigadier general totaled $625 per month. As a major general this would increase to $808.33. The chief of staff received the pay and allowances of a major general plus $2,200 per year in additional allowances. Thus Marshall would receive an added $4,400 per year beginning September 1.
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), p. 25.