• 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 It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online.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 us about how you can contribute to this historic project.



Alexandria, Va., April 24, 1861


General Lee, Commander-In-Chief:


I can destroy the light-boats and remove the buoys, through the pilots, without military force. Shall I do it?


                                     Philip St. Geo. Cocke,





Our object is to interrupt the navigation of the Potomac by batteries, &c. If the governor and council see no objection, I will direct General Cocke, unless he can remove the light-boats to places of safety, to destroy them and to remove the buoys.



Subnmitted to the council by the governor.


Council Office, April 24, 1861


Advised unanimously that the decision upon the matter be left to the discretion of General Lee.

By order of the council:

P. F. Howard,




John Letcher

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