Athens Geo April 13th 1866

 

Dear General

                        I am under the impression that a Professorship of Engineering has been established in connection with Washington College: if correct in this, permit me to inquire, whether it is on the same footing as the other Professorships the course forming a part of the Curriculum studies, or whether it is a kind of separate school or College, under the general control of a faculty, but its scholars not numbered among the students, neither subject to the College discipline in other words, must College be entered for a course of Engineering.  These inquiries are made in consequence of there being an intention to establish a similar Professorship in connection with the College at this point, but it is a matter of uncertainty with the Board, what precise relationship it would be most advisable for it to have to the College as at present established.

            I desire to inquire further what textbooks have been selected to constitute the Engineering Course & in what order they are studied, and through how many months or terms the course extends.

            General, it has been most satisfactory to (word missing) all to perceive that the storm of Radicalism and persecution has passed by leaving you measurably unharmed and for now that so much time has elapsed, should the thirst of the North for discord and injustice, be not yet satisfied, it is to be hoped they will conclude to turn and save each other

            I indulge the hope that your life may be long be spared to cheer and encourage those whom Providence seemed unwilling should be successfully defended

                                                With assurance of sincere regard & respect

                                                            Very truly yours

                                                                        M. L. Smith

 

Genl R. E. lee

Washingt College

            Virginia

 

Notation on reverse in General Lee’s handwriting:

            Athens Geo 13 Apl ‘66

Genl M. L. Smith

In reference to establishment

of a Profship of Engineering

at WC

 

Ansd: 24 Apl