Robert E. Lee

Francis E. Berrier

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

17 Oct. 1854

Dear Sir.

The reports to the parents of the Cadets, are sent from the Engineer Dept. at Washington. Your nephew having given the name of M. Wallace as his guardian, the reports have been consequently made to him. Should Mr. Wallace, or yourself, write to Genl: Totten, Chief Engr., they will no doubt hereafter be made as you desire.

I am sorry to inform you that your nephew has not yet awhile succeeded as well in his studies as I had anticipated or wished. Whether it is owing to want of application, or merely the difficulties incident to all beginners, I do not know. His Profsr. does not think him very studious. I hope if this is the case, you will urge him to correct it, & to be more attentive to all his duties. Although not guilty of any grave offenses, his conduct so far has not been marked by that precision & attention to duty, necessary to form the character of a good soldier, & his demerit to the end of Sept. amounts to 53.

Very respfy. Your obedt. 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. 143. Addressed “Francis E. Berrier Esq. Newark, N.J.”