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(ARMY.) Scott, Winfield. Letter seeking his historic promotion to Lieutenant General. Autograph Letter Signed to James Shields, United States Senator for Illinois. 3 pages, 8 x 5 inches, on one folding sheet; minor foxing. (MRS) New York, 8 December 1853
Here the great Mexican War hero writes to a senator and fellow Mexican War general, seeking an Act of Congress to revive the rank of Lieutenant General on his behalf. "I know not that you may be inclined to trouble yourself a fourth time with the question of the lieutenant generalcy, but if a bill providing for the rank can be again carried in the Senate at an early day, I think it may be got thru the House . . . by July next, & if need, it is believed, a good word from the President can be thrown in to prevent the sleep of death on the Speaker's table." He then discusses the minutiae of the bill, and points out that technically George Washington had never held the rank, "for he only prospectively agreed to accept it." In February 1855, Scott would be appointed a brevet Lieutenant General, the first in American history since Washington. Provenance: Charles Hamilton sale, 20 May 1965, lot 131, to the consignor.
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