DescriptionConfederate General Robert E. Lee Endorsement Signed. Two sides of one leaf, 8" x 9.25", "Headqrs Dept. North[er]n Va," October 15, 1862. In addition to lengthy endorsement signed by Lee are those of William H. MacFarland and Colonel Matt Ransom. All endorsements are in response to a letter written by Colonel William Clarke, who recommends John M. E. Valk of Mecklenburg County, Virginia, for a position in the Quartermaster's department. Smoothed folds with minor separations beginning at a few folds. Separations along some folds have been professionally repaired. Some edge chipping and tears; expected soiling and staining.
Lee's endorsement appears on the reverse of a partial letter signed by Colonel William J. Clarke of the 24th North Carolina Infantry Regiment in which Clark recommends John Valk, "an energetic, prompt, and remarkably correct businessman. . . . He and his large family are refugees from their home because of his attachment to the cause of Southern Independence." Below Clarke's recommendation, former Provisional Confederate Congressman William H. MacFarland, a resident of Lunenburg County, Virginia, writes and signs an endorsement, which reads in part, "I have the pleasure of knowing Mr. Valk, for whom I entertain great respect. He is a gentleman of high character." On the reverse of the letter, Colonel Matt W. Ransom of the 35th North Carolina Regiment, writes and signs his own endorsement, which reads in part, "It gives me great pleasure to concur in the testimony borne by Col. Clarke on behalf of Capt. Valk. . . . I can safely say that I know no man of superior moral worth or better business qualities."
Below Ransom's endorsement an endorsement signed by Lee, which reads in full, "Having great confidence in the recommendation of Genl. Ransom & Col Clarke, I do not hesitate to recommend Mr. Valk for the position of Asst Q.M. Believing from his testimonials that he will prove an active & efficient officer, his position & services claim something for him from the Government. [Signed] R E Lee / Genl." The endorsement and signature are large and bold.
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