• 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 It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online.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.



Arlington 17 Feby 1859

My dearest Cousin Anna

The Board on Cavalry Equipments has resumed its sittings. I had hoped to have gotten through to day, but Cannot See when we shall Complete. I Can therefore forsee no day that I Can go to Alexa nor fortell when the rains will Cease or the roads become passable for you to get here. I hope Soon. In the mean time I thought you might like to know how fortune deals with our young lovers. A letter from Fitzhugh yesterday reports the arrival of himself & C_ at N. Wales. Uncle Wms had preceded them. He has offered F_ Broadneck (I suppose with its appurtenances) if he will resign & has promised to build the young Couple a house. He told him to inform me & to say I must Come down & plow it &c.

F. will accept, the deed to be given him on the day of the wedding, & if every thing Can be got ready they will be married on the 16 March1. F. desired me not to mention the matter, until all was arranged, as there might be Changes &c, & I have only told Mary. But I think I Can tell you.

I saw Smith yesterday. He was expecting Nannie in the evg. I Called at his room this morg, but he had not reached it. He was anticipating a pleasant party last evg, & all Washington expect the same tomorrow evg.

All unite in much love & earnest hopes for your visit.

Very truly & affy

R E Lee



Source:  Digital scan of original letter, The Papers of Robert E. Lee, 1749-1975, Rubenstein Library, Duke University

Transcribed by Katie Hall, 2018 July 2


1. William Henry Fitzhugh Lee (1837-1891) married Charlotte Georgiana Wickham (1841-1863) on March 23, 1859 at Shirley plantation.

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