1653 Pa Ave, Washington, February 25, 1878.
Mrs E. J. Lee, Sr,1
I have delayed replying to your letter much longer than I intended. Some delay would the better impress you with the belief that I had acted with deliberation in conditionally releasing Cousin Edmund’s2 estate from his debt to me, the condition being that the sum involved should not go to the benefit of his creditors, but remain for the use of his family because of the destruction of his house & its contents during the war. I infer from the letters of his sons that this will be as I desired, and I am satisfied if it is so.
The photograph of cousin Edmund recently received recalls his fine head and noble nature, and I praise it highly. The account you gave me of his sudden indisposition & death was very impressive and interesting, and strikingly resembled the close of Mrs Blair’s life. They were very old & not afflicted with long sickness & suffering.
Wishing for you equal length of days & for every member of cousin Edmund’s family health prosperity & happiness, I am,
S. P. Lee3
Source: The Archives of the Robert E. Lee Memorial Foundation, Papers of the Lee Family, Box 6, M2009.424
Transcribed by Caitlin Connelly, 2016 June 10
1. Henrietta Bedinger Lee (1810-after 1892), the second wife of Edmund Jennings Lee
2. Edmund Jennings Lee, Jr. (1797-1877)
3. Samuel Phillips Lee (1812-1897)