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 It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online.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



Headquarters Army of Northern Virginia,

Hagerstown, Md., September 15, 1862


Maj. Gen. Gustavus W. Smith,

Commanding, &c., Richmond, Va.:


General: Your letter of the 4th instant has just been received. I am glad to learn that you have organized a force for the Rappahannock, which I hope will be sufficient for present purposes; but I beg you will spare no effort to increase it, and, if it acquires sufficient strength, that you will advance it beyond the Rappahannock, to cover that country from the raids of the enemy’s cavalry as far as possible. The wounded at Warrenton must be brought back to a place of greater security whenever opportunity affords, and as soon as they can bear the transportation. They were only sent there temporarily.

I am glad you have given directions for the gathering up and forwarding to their regiments of the stragglers through the country, and hope you will speedily obtain enough labor to complete the works around Richmond.

I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R E Lee




Source: The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, Series 1, Vol. 19, Part 2, p. 609


Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2016 September 12

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