• The Lees of Virginia
  • The Lees of Virginia
  • The Lees of Virginia
  • The Lees of Virginia

The Lee Family Digital Archive is the largest online source for primary source materials concerning the Lee family of Virginia. It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online. We are always looking for new letters, diaries, and books to add to our website. Do you have a rare item that you would like to donate or share with us? If so, please contact our editor, Colin Woodward, at  (804) 493-1940, about how you can contribute to this historic project.


 

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Lee Family Digital Archive

C. B. Richardson, Publisher & Bookseller,

No. 540 Broadway,

New York, May 5th 1865

 

Dear Sir

With regard to the suggestion I made to you referring to the proposed volume upon your campaigns, it is suitable that you should know to what extent I feel a personal interest in the matter. Having already issued several volumes relating to the Confederate cause, it would be specially gratifying to add to the number such as work as would come from your pen.

I am more than ever convinced of the importance of such volume in placing your own campaign in a proper lights before the world. Such an offering from the press would not only aid materially in healing whatever feelings of animosity may exist, but would also be welcomed by your numerous friends both north and south.

If upon mature consideration you feel inclined to pursue this subject and are willing to place the work in my hands for publication. I would gladly make most liberal terms, and to that end would offer you fifty cents (50) copy right on every copy sold. I would also bear the cost of the stereotype plates. Portraits. Maps etc

I suppose the volume would probably be about the size of the “Official Report.” I send you, and if so would retail for $3.50

The usual copyright upon standard work is 10 percent on the retail price

With your benefit largely in view as a matter of my sincere regard, aside from my personal interest. I should endeavor to secure the largest possible sale. Judging from the success of similar work of less importance, which I have already published, my estimate of the probable sale for the first year would be, at least, from thirty (30) to forty (40) thousand copies.

Should this proposition meet your favorable consideration, and you should decide to undertake the work. I would respectfully suggest its commencement with as little delay as possible that it may be in readiness for the coming winter trade. Any communication addressed to me might be sent through our mutual friend Mr T. H. Wynne.1

A reply at your earliest convenience will oblige

 

Yours very truly

C B Richardson2

  

 

 

1. Thomas Hicks Wynne (1820-1875). He was born in Richmond, Virginia. As a young man, he worked in the iron industry and later manufacturing, gas industry, railroads, and telegraph. He also served on the Richmond city council and the state senate. He was a writer, who wrote for the Southern Literary Messenger and was a member of the Virginia Literary and Philosophical Society. He was also active in the Virginia Historical Society. Wynne died in Richmond and is buried on the grounds of St. John’s Episcopal Church.    

2. Charles Benjamin Richardson (1832-1891).

 

 

 

 

Source: Robert E. Lee Headquarters Papers, Folder 29, Mss3 L 515a, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond

 

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2017 February 7

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