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Robert E. Lee

Isaac E. Morse

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

1 July 1854

Sir.

In reply to your application of the 21st Ulto. To the Honble. Secy. of War for a leave of absence for your young friend Cadet T. T. Nicholls, which has been referred to me; I have the honour to state that the Regns. of the Acady. allow but one leave of absence to the Cadets while at the Institution, & that Cadet Nicholls recd his during the last encampment, viz. from the 17th June till the 20th August. The present encampment is his time for duty, & devoted to the instruction of his class in Infty & Arty Tactics, & Practical Engineering, which in his case would be seriously interrupted by the indulgence you request. I regret therefore I cannot recommend it to be granted. It requires but two hours to reach the Point from New York, between which several trains of cars & commodious steamers daily ply. It will therefore be very convenient to such of his friends as desire to visit him without interruption of his studies & duties.

I remain, Sir 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. 116. Addressed “Isaac E. Morse Esq. New Orleans, La.”