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    [First World War]. Woodrow Wilson Typed Letter Signed as president. Two integral pages, opened to 13.75" x 8.75", Washington, June 26, 1918, to Dr. Van H. Manning, Chief of the Bureau of Mines for the Department of the Interior. Wilson writes regarding the transfer of a department concerned with production of weaponized chemicals to be used in Europe during the First World War. He writes in full:

    "I have had before me for some days the question presented by the Secretary of War involving the transfer of the chemical section established by you at the American University from the Bureau of Mines to the newly organized Division of Gas Warfare in which the War Department is now concentrating all the various facilities for offensive and defensive gas operations. I am satisfied that a more efficient organization can be effected by having these various activities under on direction and control, and my hesitation about acting in the matter has grown only our of a reluctance to take away from the Bureau of Mines a piece of work which thus far it has so effectively performed. The Secretary of War has assured me of his own recognition of the splendid work you have been able to do, and I am taking the liberty of enclosing a letter which I have received from him, in order that you may see how fully the War Department recognizes the value of the services.

    "I am to-day signing the order directing the transfer. I want, however, to express to you my own appreciation of the fine and helpful piece of work which you have done, and to say that this sort of team work by the bureaus outside of the direct War-making agency is one of the cheering and gratifying evidences of the way our official forces are inspired by the presence of a great national task."

    Toward the end of the war, as the use of chemical weapons increased, the effectiveness of such attacks conversely decreased. Both armies had developed countermeasures, i.e. gas masks, to negate the ill effects of the slow moving gas clouds. Only 4% of combat deaths were from chemical attacks. Toned folds. Wilson's bold signature has bled slightly, but is still wholly legible. With original transmittal envelope.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2012
    11th-12th Wednesday-Thursday
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