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Henry Halleck letter to George W. Cullum, 1846.
MANUSCRIPTSMCII : Box 28 : Folder 8
Collection Overview


Henry Halleck letter to George W. Cullum, 1846
Halleck letter


Halleck, H. W. (Henry Wager), 1815-1872, creator


Letter written on June 20, 1846 from Henry Halleck to George W. Cullum that mentions upcoming U.S. Army expedition to California aboard the USS Lexington. Also covered is promotion for Halleck's newly-written book, and the possibility of more officers being transferred to the Engineer Corps.


1846 (issued)


Cullum, George W. (George Washington) -- 1809-1892
Mexican War, 1846-1848


The writer of this letter mentions the new book as being written by his cousin "H. Halleck of the corps of topographical engineers." Since this appears in quotes, since Halleck had a long-standing friendship with George Cullum, and since Halleck was a part of the Mexican War expedition that sailed aboard the USS Lexington, it is probable that Halleck referred to himself as his cousin in jest. The letter's signature is almost illegible, but it begins with "Halleck."
Henry Wager Halleck was born near Westernville, Oneida County, New York on January 16, 1815. After graduating in 1839 from the United States Military Academy as a second lieutenant of engineers, he became an expert on fortifications and tactics. During the Mexican War he sailed to California with a detachment aboard the USS Lexington, was involved in building fortifications, and saw some active combat duty. In 1850, Halleck played a major role in framing California's constitution. He then established a law practice in San Francisco, engaged in land speculation, and became one of California's most prominent citizens. In 1853 Halleck constructed the Montgomery Block, San Francisco's first large office building. Recalled to active military duty at the beginning of the Civil War, Halleck became general-in-chief of the Union armies, and then rose to chief-of-staff. Halleck died in Louisville, Kentucky on January 9, 1872.
George Washington Cullum was born in New York City on February 25, 1809 and graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1833. Cullum rose to the rank of brigadier general during the Civil War, and spent his entire army career in engineering. In 1875 Cullum married Henry Halleck's widow, who was also the granddaughter of Alexander Hamilton. He died in New York City on February 28, 1892.
Halleck letter.
Unrestricted. Please credit California State Library.

Physical Description:

Letter in file folder; 15 x 9 1/2 in.






Copyright Note:

Unrestricted. Please credit California State Library.