Robert E. Lee

Joseph G. Totten

U.S. Military Academy West Point

24 Nov. 1853.


I have recd. the application of the Honble. Caleb Cushing for a leave of absence for Cadet St. S. Hawkins, to attend his cousins wedding in Decr referred to me on the 22nd Inst:.

Cadet Hawkins is in the last section of his class in Mathematics, & among the lowest in his section. He is now reviewing his course preparatory to the approaching Jany. Examination, & it will require in my opinion all his time & all his attention to prepare himself for that occasion. I fear that the leave of absence desired would be fatal to his prospects of success now considered very doubtful. In view therefore of his own interest, I regret I cannot recommend it to be granted; nor do I think that the interests of the Acady would be promoted by considering similar ceremonies, agreeable as I know them to be to the Cadets, proper grounds for interrupting the duties prescribed by the Regns, which would be thus materially interfered with; for if granted to one, the same indulgence ought to be granted to all. The letter of the Honble. C. Cushing is herewith returned.

I have the honour to be very resply. Your obedt Servt.Sigd./ R. E. Lee. Br. Col:
Supt: Mil: Acady.

Superintendent’s Daily Correspondence
United States Military Academy

Superintendent’s Letter Book No. 3, p. 72. Addressed “Genl: Jos: G. Totten Chief Engineer Washington City D.C.”