H’d Q’rs Dep't of New England, BosTON, Nov. 9th, 1861
MY DEAR SIR: Gen. Wool has resigned. Gen. Fremont must. Gen. Scott has retired.
I have an ambition, and I trust a laudable one, to be Major General of the United States Army. Has any body done more to deserve it? No one will do more. May I rely upon you as you have confidence in me to take this matter into consideration?
I will not disgrace the position. I may fail in its duties.
BENJ. F. BUTLER
P.S. I have made the same suggestion to other of my friends.
B. F. B.
SOURCES: Jessie Ames Marshall, Editor, Private and Official Correspondence of Gen. Benjamin F. Butler During the Period of the Civil War, Volume 1: April 1860 – June 1862, p. 274; Clara B. Hay, Letters of John Hay and Extracts from Diary, Volume 1, p. 51; Tyler Dennett, Lincoln and the Civil War in the Diaries and Letters of John Hay, p. 33-4.