As I go to Washington for my likely confirmation as Lieutenant General, I wanted to give my thanks to two people to whom I owe much of my success.
March 4, 1864.
DEAR SHERMAN: The bill reviving the grade of lieutenant-general in the army has become a law, and my name has been sent to the Senate for the place. I now receive orders to report to Washington immediately in person, which indicates either a confirmation or a likelihood of confirmation.
I start in the morning to comply with the order, but I shall say very distinctly on my arrival there that I accept no appointment which will require me to make that city my headquarters. this, however, is not what I started out to write about.
Whilst I have been eminently successful in this war in at least gaining the confidence of the public, no one feels more than me how much of this success is due to the energy, skill, and the harmonious putting forth of that energy and skill, of those who it has been my good fortune to have occupying a subordinate position under me.
There are many officers to whom these remarks are applicable to a greater or less degree, proportionate to their ability as soldiers, but what I want is to express my thanks to you and McPherson as the men to whom, above all others, I feel indebted for whatever I have had of success. How far your advice and suggestions have been of been given you to do entitles you to the reward I am receiving, you cannot know as well as me. I feel all the gratitude this letter would express, giving it the most flattering construction.
The word “you” I use in the plural, intending it for McPherson also. I should write to him, and will some day, but starting in the morning I do not know that I will find time just now.
U. S. GRANT,
The Papers of Ulysses S Grant, Vol 10, p 186-7
O.R., I, xxxii, part 3, p 18