Showing posts with label US Military Academy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label US Military Academy. Show all posts

Sunday, November 22, 2020

Emory Upton to Maria Upton, February 25, 1857

February 25, 1857.

DEAR SISTER: . . . I am glad to hear of your good health and assiduity to study, and that you are exerting every faculty in the laudable pursuit of education. I am striving equally hard for the same. I am sure that few have the facilities offered for getting an education which I have, and not to take advantage of these privileges is inconsistent. I study from 6 to 7 A. M., and from 8 A. M. to 1 P. M., including recitations; then from 2 to 4 P. M. I read newspapers and write letters; from 4 P. M. till sundown is release from quarters, which I usually spend in the library reading, and then study from 7 to 9.30 P. M.; so that you see my time is pretty well occupied. Perhaps a few of my daily marks would give you an idea of my progress. . . . So long as I can keep up to these marks I am not in danger of being found deficient. . . . I am passionately attached to West Point, and would not give up my appointment here for a million dollars.  I want you to come here next encampment and see the beautiful scenery that I have often tried to describe.

 SOURCE: Peter Smith Michie, The Life and Letters of Emory Upton, p. 12-13

Emory Upton to Maria Upton, September 7, 1857

WEST POINT, September 7, 1857.

MY DEAR SISTER: . . . In your letter you allude to my demerit.  I must say that it gave me the bluest kind of blues; not because it made me have any apprehension of being “found,” but because you look upon them in a wrong light.  Now, I’ll disabuse you of this error.  You use the term “bad marks.” Bad signifies to you, evil, wrong, immoral, and wicked, which placed before Marks signifies that I have been doing something wrong or immoral—something which conscience disapproves.  That is wrong, not only in the sight of a military man, but of God.  Now, what moral wrong is there in “laughing in the ranks,” in being “late at roll-call,” “not stepping off at command,” “not having coat buttoned throughout,” and kindred reports?  Now is that wrong in the sight of God?  I say, no!  But it is wrong only in the sight of a military man, and it is from such reports that I get my demerits or “bad marks.”  I can say I have never received an immoral report, such as “using profane language.”  I thank you for the kind admonition, and to please you I will try to get as few as possible. I have only one so far this month, and if I get no more that will come off. I certainly shall be careful enough to prevent being cut a single day on furlough.

SOURCE: Peter Smith Michie, The Life and Letters of Emory Upton, p. 13-4