THE PROPERTY OF A DESCENDANT OF HUMPHREY MARSHALL
[CIVIL WAR]. DAVIS, Jefferson. Letter signed ("Jeffer Davis") as Secretary of War, to Humphrey Marshall, "War Department," Washington, 5 February 1857. 1 page, 4to, integral blank, fine condition.
CONGRESSMAN MARSHALL DENIED ASSIGNMENT IN THE CAVALRY. Upon returning from service in the Mexican War as commander of the Kentucky Volunteers, Marshall endeavored to follow his grandfather's footsteps and launch a political career. But after serving as Congressman and as a diplomat in China, Marshall longed to return to the military. Promotion in the peace-time army was slow, however, and appointments were difficult to obtain. Here, Secretary of War Davis informs Marshall that he cannot be accomodated: "In reply to your inquiry of the 2d instant I have the honor to inform you that there is not at this time any vacancy in the Cavalry Regiments, nor indeed in any of the Mounted Regiments of the Army."
Though Marshall failed to in his quest for an appointment in the United States Army, after secession he was quickly commissioned a Brigadier General in the Confederate Army.