Thomas P. Turner Compiled Service Record, M331, National Archives
September 8th 62
Hon. Alex. R. Boteler,
I dislike very much to trouble you, knowing how much your time must be occupied with matters of more importance than the subject of this letter and considering also the many kindnesses you have already rendered me; but please excuse me with this explanation.
You may be aware that until within the last few weeks, I have for some time past been in charge of the Mil. Prisons at Richd. Just before Genl Longstreet’s Division left the Peninsula I was offered a position on Genl Kemper’s Stafff which would have been advantageous for me to have accepted, but Genl Winder wuld not agree for me to leave the prisons at that time & promised me that I should at any rate be promoted, & did recommend me for promotion. A few weeks ago [page break] Genl. Lee requested Genl. W. to recommend some one for Provost Marshal of this city and I had the honor to receive the appointment. I was unwilling however to accept it unless my rank was increased, but upon the earnest solicitation of Genl. W. concluded not to decline and was promised that the promotion should be forthcoming; But there seems to be some difficulty in the way which I do not exactly understand. I will mention that I received my commission as 2d Lieut in the regular army last September, 61, and I am informed that the appointments then made by the President not having been confirmed by the Senate at the last session, those officers can not receive promotions until the Senate takes some action in regard to the matter. My promotion if made will be in the Provisional Army & I will still hold my position as 2d Lieut in the regular service is confirmed. A difficulty may arise as to the commission in the regular army on account of my name not appearing on the West Point register [page break] which I understand has been examined & all found placed in the regular C. S. A. I was not at the Academy a full session, which accounts for it.
Wishing to receive a regular commission & also having some ambition as to the promotion so long promised me, & which I believe is now under the consideration of thee Sec of War, I am induced to trouble you with the communication.
By ascertaining some thing (If I am not asking too much of you) in reference to this matter you will be adding greatly to the debt of gratitude I already owe you.
I am sir,
With Great Respect
Your Obdt Servt
Th. P. Turner