Field Marshal Wolsely (1833-1913 became one of the most admired and influential British generals who served in the Crimea, India, Canada, West Africa, China and Egypt, and played a central role in modernizing the British army of his period. He became commander-in-chief of all British forces from 1895-1900.
Sir Garnet Joseph Wolsely’s Two American Heroes
War Office, London
8th December 1883
“My Dear Miss S.,
I have long been collecting the letters of eminent people but have had much difficulty in obtaining those of the great men on your side of the Atlantic. I have only known two heroes in my life, and General R. E. Lee is one of them, so you can understand how I value one of his letters. I believe that when time has calmed down the angry passions of the “North,” General Lee will be accepted in the United States as the greatest General you have ever had, and second as a patriot only to Washington himself.
Stonell Jackson, I only knew slightly, his name will live forever also in American history when that of Mr. U.S. Grant has been long forgotten, such at least is my humble opinion of these men when viewed by an outside student of military history who has no local prejudice.
That [letter] of General Beauregard is one that I shall always prize. I am indeed very grateful to you for telling me to keep it. Again, thanking you most sincerely for your kindness to me in this matter, believe me to remain,
Very faithfully yours, Wolsely.