1821. Octr 7.
Fr: Mayo to Lee (fr: original)
My extreme impatience to hear from you really torments me. I fear you have not recd my last in consequence of my directing it to Mattox Bridge, whence I supposed you wd more readily get it, as yours had that postmark. You will doubtless receive it on application; but lest it shd, by adverse possibility, miscarry, I will remark that it bore date about the 15 Ulto when I had just returned from a visit among my friends up the country I found both your favours among the letters recd in my absence. A few days afterwards Mr. Ritzer delivered your letter requesting me to retain Mr. Leigh to argue your cause to which was necessarily delayed as Mr. L. was out of town.
Upon hearing of his return a day or two since, I called on him according to your request when he informed me he had recd a letter from you which he had answered to your address near Westmoreld Cthouse.
Mr. Leigh seems to be under the impression that this is a malicious prosecution against you instead of a malicious action entered by yourself for damages, as I conceive it to be from your letter to me. I mention this circumstance that you may judge whether it be necessary to be more explicit, shd you write to Mr. L. again, which you may do through me if you think proper. Mr. Leigh intimated that he felt no difficulty about the fee, but did not state what its dignity might be; & this I presume wd depend very materially upon the nature of the action. If these remarks be foreign to the purpose, you will excuse the friendly zeal that renders me officious in making them.
Pray tell me if you have any news from Loudon. A single word from that quarter even a mere surmise, or conjecture will afford me more gratification than the most elaborate or learned treatise on any other subject. Do tell me if you have any ground to suppose Miss McC.1 has heard of my intentions: I presume there can be no objection to such a discovery were it not effected in such a manner as to excite a prejudice. I hope the Ladies enjoy good health. Be so good as to present my best respects to them, and esteem me
Ever yrs. sincerely
Richmd Oct. 7. 1821
Source: The Archives of the Robert E. Lee Memorial Foundation, Papers of the Lee Family, Box 7, M2009.139
Transcribed by Caitlin Connelly, 2016 June 16
1. Elizabeth McCarty (1800-1879)