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Wilkinson letter discussing Indian affairs and drills



Wilkinson letter discussing Indian affairs and drills


Letter dated September 14, 1879 from Capt. M. C. Wilkinson to Joseph W. Marsh. Marsh was a professor at Pacific University and was functioning as its interim president. Wilkinson was, at the time of writing this letter, serving as an aide-de-camp under General O.O. Howard with the U.S. Army Department of the Columbia, and also teaching military drills at Pacific University. Several months later, Wilkinson would begin working as the first superintendent of the Forest Grove Indian Training School, while concurrently serving as a professor of military science at Pacific University. In this letter, Wilkinson asks to pursue business relating to "Indian Affairs" with Dr. Atkinson, who was the Secretary of Pacific University's Board of Trustees. He may be referring to discussions related to starting the Indian School in Forest Grove. Wilkinson also provides a schedule for when he will next be in Forest Grove to do drills at Pacific.


Wilkinson, Melville C.






Portland, Sunday Eve.
Sept 14 [18]79
To Prof Jos Marsh,
Forest Grove
Dear Sir:
I need to see Doctor Atkinson, who returns tomorrow, with reference to Indian Affairs. Some communication should be had as soon as possible with the Secretary of the Interior.
The daughter of my late landlandy will return from San Francisco on Tuesday evening. I must see her with relation to [unmaking?] up my home here.
Wednesday evening General Howard's daughter Gracie is married, of course my duty is placed here.
I intend to ride out on Tuesday for drill; then on Tuesday, THursday & Friday we will have the regular drills.
Truly yours,
M.C. Wilkinson
P.S. Am writing by a faint light & late. Please excuse careless appearance of note. M.C.W.


Wilkinson, Melville C., “Wilkinson letter discussing Indian affairs and drills,” Pacific University Archives Exhibits, accessed May 23, 2019,

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