Robert E. Lee

J. Watson Webb

U.S. Military Academy West Point N.Y.

21 June 1854


I have forwd. Agreeably to your request, your application to the Hon: Secy of War for a leave of absence for your son Cadet Alex. S. Webb, which I regret I could not accompany with my recommendation for favorable consideration. However highly I could with truth speak in commendation of his acquirements & Conduct, I could not with justice ask for an indulgence to him, which the duties & interests of his class & Corps forbid my recommending be extended to all. I must endeavour to be impartial in the distribution of relaxation & duty, that each in turn may have their share of both. Your son had his share of the former in the last encampment, & it is now his turn for the latter. I hope he will this year set resolutely to work to recover his former high standing in his class, which I think he is fully able to accomplish if he has only the will & I know you will do all in your power to urge him to this course. I am sorry to inform you that he is 12th in his class in good standing.

I am with great respect Your Obt.Servt.Signed/ R. E. Lee Br. Col:
Supt: Mil: Acady

Superintendent’s Daily Correspondence
United States Military Academy

Superintendent’s Letter Book No. 3, p. 112. Addressed “Genl. J. Watson Webb.”