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To Captain David D. Barrett1
May 13, 1935 [Chicago, Illinois]
My dear Barrett:
I received your letter of May 7th the other day, and it was not until this morning that the “Primer in the Writing of Chinese Characters” arrived.2 I was very glad to hear from you and to learn something of what you had been doing, and was delighted to learn that your recent tour in China had been so satisfying in professional interest.
While I have not had an opportunity to do more than merely scan the book, it immediately impressed me as being exceedingly well done, very well set up, and makes me wish that we had had some such text while I was with the 15th Infantry. You have quite evidently done a fine job of it and I congratulate you.
I think it an excellent thing for younger officers to keep their brains whetted up by undertaking tasks of this sort, rather than dropping into the stodgy business of merely carrying out orders. If one does not have some specialty or avocation, the added years mean a decided let down in general tone and efficiency.
I often recall our days at Nan ta Ssu and the year you spent at Benning. And I recall, too, your regret at being sent to R.O.T.C. duty in New York. But since then you have been with troops pretty constantly and although Crook is not desirable climatically, it is a post and you will have plenty of men after July 1st.
I, too, trust that we may serve together again, and I appreciate the nice things you have to say about me.
With warm regards,
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Illinois National Guard, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed letter.
1. Barrett was a graduate of the Infantry School, Company Officers’ Course, in 1929. He had served as S-2 (Intelligence Section) with the Fifteenth Infantry in China from the fall of 1931 to the fall of 1934. At the time of his letter, he was serving as regimental S-3 (Operations and Training Section) at Fort Crook, Nebraska. (Barrett to Marshall, May 7, 1935, GCMRL/ G. C. Marshall Papers [Illinois National Guard].)
2. David Dean Barrett, A Primer in the Writing of Chinese Characters (Shanghai: Kelly and Walsh, 1934). The work had originally been produced for The Sentinel, the official weekly of the United States Army troops stationed in Tientsin, China, to interest the soldiers in the Chinese language. (Ibid.)
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. 467-468.