17th April 1876
My dear Mrs. Anderson,
On my recent return from New Orleans, your letter of the 27th ult. was received.
Under the circumstances stated, there can be no valid objection to sending your
son to the U.S. Military Academy.
That institution is supported by the people, the cadets are apportioned among the
states; except ten who are appointed by the President; and they were provided especially
for the tons of soldiers, who not having residence, or citizenship in any state, were not in
the line of selection to represent any district of a state. If then than every true son of the
South is to be excluded from the U.S. Military, and Naval academies, it would follow that
the people of each Southern state must be misrepresented in those institutions, and the
people must furnish the means to support and educate their enemies only.
The objections to sending your son to West Point are not, I think, referable to the
principles his honored Father gallantly maintained, both in council and the field; but to
other considerations, which you and he can better decide than I. Questions of sentiment,
or a future career, are not subject to political laws, or logical deductions; and no one is
capable of giving advice worthy of being put in the balance against your own knowledge
& judgment in regard to them.
Mrs. Davis had a fall some weeks since, and is yet suffering from the effect of it.
She and Winnie and I. we'll probably sail in the early part of May, from New Orleans fro
England, where they will remain probably until next winter, possibly longer; but my stay
will only be for the time necessary to transact the business on which I am going over.
Mrs. Davis like myself was very glad to hear from you and she unites with me in cordial
good wishes for you and yours. I am very faithfully
Transcribed by Christopher A. Baker, University of Florida, 2008.