fixed and movable, including the old mural circle, had gone through a season's work.
Although my scientific experience has been very limited, I do not believe anything else in the broad domain of science can be half so fascinating as the study of the heavens.
I have regretted many times that necessity limited my enjoyment of that great pleasure to a very few years instead of a lifetime.
In that West Point
observatory I had one of the many opportunities of my life—one which I always enjoyed—of protecting the unfortunate from the stern decree of ‘justice.’
The old German custodian came to me one morning in great distress, saying that he had let the ‘astronomical chronometer’ run down, and that the professor would kill him. I went with him to the transit tower, made an observation, and set the chronometer.
The professor never knew the difference till I told him, after the lapse of time named in the military statute of limitations.
Then he seemed to rejoice as much as I over the narrow escape of his faithful subordinate.
The professor was not half as stern as he sometimes appeared to be.
I need hardly say that in the midst of these absorbing occupations I forgot all about the career I had chosen in my boyhood.
The law had no longer any charms for me. Yet I found in after life far more use for the law than for physics and astronomy, and little less than for the art and science of war.
In June, 1857, I married Miss Harriet Bartlett
, the second daughter of my chief in the department of philosophy.
Five children were born to us, three of whom—two sons and one daughter—grew to maturity and survive their mother, who died in Washington
soon after I was assigned to the command of the army, and was buried at West Point
by the side of our first-born son, who had died in 1868, soon after I became Secretary of War
In the summer of 1860 came the end of my term of