To Brigadier General Edmund L. Daley1
September 13, 1940 [Washington, D.C.]
I have treated you to a long silence, though it has been in my mind to write to you quite frequently. The truth is, you must take it as a compliment that you hear so little from me, because I have a feeling of great confidence in your handling of the job in Puerto Rico.
The other day we were within a few minutes of dispatching a radio to you to come to Washington immediately on temporary duty. I was going to put you on this joint Army and Navy board for the survey of bases between Newfoundland and Trinidad. However, things moved too rapidly and I only had a few hours in which to get together the Army representation; so Devers was selected.2 He has been to Bermuda and leaves for Newfoundland tonight.
I do not know when I will get to Puerto Rico but I am very anxious to see how you are progressing. It has just been barely possible for me to get around the United States by air in order to keep track of the expansion now under way—which is really very extensive particularly as to schools and as to new divisions and construction. The first increment of the National Guard goes out on Monday and that will mean another series of pressing events, particularly as to shelter and expedition of training.
Next week we will alter the organization—really just a deliberate step in the program we have had under way for some time—by removing from the corps areas any responsibility for the training of units. We are organizing tactical corps, removing army commanders from corps area affairs, and heading up the whole business under General McNair at the head of the GHQ, now at the War College. He is taking over a large part of the faculty and we have added to it selected officers; I think he will be able to exercise a profound influence on both training and leadership.
I wish you would write me a little informally and tell me how things are progressing, and also to assure me that you have not felt neglected by my long silence.
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Pentagon Office Collection, Selected Materials, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed letter.
1. Daley had been commanding general of the Puerto Rican Department since its activation on July 1, 1939.
2. Brigadier General Jacob L. Devers (U.S.M.A., 1909) had been chief of staff of the Panama Canal Department until July 1940. He served on the presidential board for the selection of air and naval base sites in the Atlantic until October 9, 1940.
Recommended Citation: The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, ed. Larry I. Bland, Sharon Ritenour Stevens, and Clarence E. Wunderlin, Jr. (Lexington, Va.: The George C. Marshall Foundation, 1981– ). Electronic version based on The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, vol. 2, “We Cannot Delay,” July 1, 1939-December 6, 1941 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1986), pp. 304–305.