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To Major General John A. Lejeune
March 26, 1937 Vancouver Barracks, Washington
As you no doubt will understand, I have had numerous letters from would-be candidates for the position of superintendent at the Institute. To practically all of them I have had nothing to say, except in the case of Phil Peyton, who is a dear friend and was my roommate at the V.M.I., who I esteem highly and whose tact and brain rank far above the average.1 Today, however, someone sent me a list of candidates, and, most confidentially, I have become so concerned over the possibility that one or two of these might receive serious consideration because of their Army positions, that I feel moved to tell you something of their disqualifications. I am referring to General Bolles and General McCloskey.2 To appoint either of these men, in my opinion, would be a fatal error. In personality and in methods they are completely disqualified. There is not much else to say.
I dislike putting my oar into this matter, but my feelings for the Institute are too strong to permit me to sit quiet under these circumstances.
As I remarked above, please treat this as most confidential.
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Vancouver Barracks, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed letter.
1. Colonel Philip S. Peyton commanded the Twenty-ninth Infantry at Fort Benning.
2. Marshall had received a list of ten possible candidates for the V.M.I. job from Peyton. Major General Brank C. Bolles (U.S.M.A., 1896) and Brigadier General Manus McCloskey (U.S.M.A., 1898), Peyton said, were actively campaigning for the post. (Peyton to Marshall, March 20, 1937, GCMRL/G. C. Marshall Papers [Vancouver Barracks].)
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), p. 528.