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To Colonel Campbell B. Hodges1
March 16, 1936 [Chicago, Illinois]
My dear Hodges:
Spalding’s letter with your note has just arrived.2 You were very good to mention my name in writing to Spalding and he was most generously flattering. What you quote of Mr. Dern’s remarks regarding the two of us was naturally very interesting to me, and I am further indebted to you for mentioning my name to the Secretary, which I know you must have done. Such loyal and generous friends as you have been, are pretty rare in this world, and I appreciate tremendously your continuous interest in my welfare. The truth of the matter is, you are so busy thinking about others that you omit all consideration of yourself. Your career, particularly these last ten years, has been increasingly conspicuous.
I hope we will be closer together in our next change of station.
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Illinois National Guard, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed letter.
1. Hodges (U.S.M.A., 1903) commanded the Fourteenth Infantry at Fort Davis, Canal Zone. He had recently returned from detached service (September, 1935, to January, 1936) as aide to Secretary of War George H. Dern, who was attending the inauguration of the Commonwealth Government of the Philippine Islands. Hodges’s letter stated that the secretary had said several times that a promotion system that had not promoted George Marshall and George Spalding (U.S.M.A., 1901) must be wrong. “I told Mr. Dern that in my opinion you [Marshall] should be made a B.G. at once, and that when next vacancy for C. of S. occurs your name should be among those considered for the job." (Hodges to Marshall, March 4, 1936, GCMRL/G. C. Marshall Papers [Illinois National Guard].)
2. Spalding told Hodges: “You mention George Marshall. I’m sorry he has not been made. Indeed, I am embarrassed to think that I was selected first, as I think he is one of our very great soldiers. I’ll do all I can to see that he does not wait long." (Colonel George R. Spalding to Hodges, February 26, 1936, ibid.) Spalding was promoted to brigadier general on May 14, 1936.
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. 490-491.