• 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 It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online.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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Camp, Orange Ct H. 13 Sept ‘63

                I was very much gratified my precious little Agnes at the reception of your letter. After perusal I forwd it to Rob & transmitted at the same time your note to Genl Stuart. I hope you will all get a fine stock of health in that envigorating country & that your neuralgia will be dissipated forever. I hear daughter is becoming quite rotund& increasing in avoirdupois daily. I hope Capt Buford has an abundance of beans & eggs. How is your poor mother & what great work has she on hand now. I hope you girls are helping Miss Buford in her work for the soldiers. Tell her how grateful I am for all she is doing for them. They are in great need & their constant cry is give give. But they are a noble set of men & she has free permission to do anything for them she pleases, except marry them for I fear that would take them out of the army. Miss Sallie told me of your grand speculation. I wish it had been in shoes & clothes for the soldiers. She has a grand scheme on foot now & only requires a million of old postage stamps, which Mr Chapman Leigh is to Collect for her. Poor little thing I wonder when it will be accomplished. She is as sweet as ever but I do not think has the least notion of marrying Custis. Dr Shirley’s calls are very frequent now, perhaps he is acting as his friend, for his visits may be professional, But she would not tell. Tell your mother Custis did not tell me of the gauntlets sent me by Ella Calvert & I did not hear of them till I recd her letter of the 3rd. Consequently I did not thank  little Ella when I saw her in R. She looks thin & badly & Capt Campbell has just been ordered to Charleston, which I suppose is an aggravation of her troubles. I suppose you have seen that the enemy has Morris Isd; I presume they will now try to get Sullivans, so as to close the mouth of the harbour. They may destroy Charleston with their shells, but I hope will not do us any great injury. Margaret & Carrie returned to Richmond yesterday. They seemed to enjoy the sight of the army & the young men enjoyed the sight of them. I scarcely saw them except the first day when they spent a couple of hours at my camp. On Monday they expect to go home, but I understand Ada is married, though still there prepared to run as soon as the enemy make their appearance. Perhaps though the wedding is over  the feast is not, & for that they will be in time. Rob: & Daingerfield Lewis paid me a visit the other day. The former is very well & the latter looks better than he has since his sickness. They both saw their cousins, but I do not think Carrie looked at Roberts once. I have no news to tell. The enemys Cavy crossed the Rappk this morg on three roads & Genl Stuart reports their arty & ours are now engaged. May God protect our brave men! I presume it is a reconnaissance in force & may reach the Rapidan, as I have learned that Greggs division has six days rations with it. My whole reliance is on our father in heaven! From a traveller from Charlottesville yesterday I learned that Charlotte was still there & better. I have heard nothing from F since I last wrote. Give much love to your mother & sister for me & think always of your father.

R E Lee   

 

 

 

Source: Photocopy of original letter, Lee Family Papers, Mss1 L51 c 479, Section 23, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond

Transcribed by Katie Gibson, 2017 August 16

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