Robert E. Lee

Joseph G. Totten

U.S. Mil Academy West Point

28 Oct 1853


In answer to the proposition, submitted by Capt A. H. Bowman of the Corps of Engineers, that Capt Cullum should assume the Superintendency of the assay office in New York, referred to me on the 26th Inst: I have to state that I do not think it incompatible at this time with his duties at this Post. The time for cessation of outdoor exercises is nearly at hand. The Engineer Company will soon commence recitations, of which the Lieuts of the Company will have charge, & the contracts for the construction of the assay office require its completion before the commencement of active operations in the spring.

It is understood that Capt Cullum is to make the necessary arrangements for the regular instruction & duties of his Company. To be present at the January Examination of the Cadets & to return to the Academy whenever his presence is required for the performance of the duties incident to his position. I hope therefore no injury will arise from his temporary absence, & I have given him authority to assume the direction of the proposed work.

I have the honor to be Your obdt. ServantSigned/ R. E. Lee Br. Col.
Supt Mil Academy

Superintendent’s Daily Correspondence
United States Military Academy

Superintendent’s Letter Book No. 3, p. 64. Addressed “Genl: Jos: G. Totten Chief Engineer Washington City D.C.”