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To Brigadier General Robert E. Wood1
April 9, 1936 Chicago, Illinois]
My dear General:
The other evening at General McCoy’s you made a very interesting statement regarding similarity of your administrative problems with those experienced in the Army. Also, you collaborated a little on the fact that business organization was more or less based on military organization in procedure. I thought what you said, and particularly your reference to daily comparisons in your company, were unusually interesting.
Would you favorably consider writing a little article on this subject to be published in the ILLINOIS GUARDSMAN? Anything from one page up would be gratefully received, and I am sure would be of great interest and even greater practical value. Many of the officers in the Guard feel that military procedure of command and staff is a thing apart from all business practices; and, as a matter of fact, it is one of their greatest weaknesses. For this reason, I think a few words from you would have an important effect.2
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Illinois National Guard, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed letter.
1. Wood had retired from the army in 1919 and moved to Chicago where he worked for Montgomery Ward and Company (1919-24) and then for Sears, Roebuck and Company. He became president of Sears on January 1, 1928.
2. No reply to this letter was found in the Marshall papers, and no article by Wood appeared in the Illinois Guardsman.
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. 491.