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 It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online.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

Richmond, Va., May 3, 1861


Maj. Gen. W. Gwynn, Commanding at Norfolk, Va.:

General: Under the authority of the governor of Virginia, by this proclamation of the 3d instant, you are hereby authorized to call out and muster into the service of the State volunteer companies from the counties of Norfolk, Nansemond, Princess Anne, Southampton, Greensville, and the cities of Norfolk and Portsmouth, not exceeding, with the State troops already in the service and under your command, six regiments of infantry and artillery and four companies of cavalry. You will organize them into regiments, associating, as far as possible, companies from the same section of the State, and place them temporarily under such officers as may be available until their proper officers can be appointed by the governor. It is hoped that you will be able rapidly to organize the whole force, and, with the troops from Georgia, be prepared by land and water to defend your position. Should your force be inadequate, please report the fact; and, if the cavalry authorized be unnecessary, you can substitute for them an equal number of infantry or artillery companies. You are desired to report as soon as possible the number of companies mustered into the service of the State, their arms, condition, &c.,

Very respectfully,

R E Lee

Major-General, Commanding




Source: The War of the Rebellion, Series 1, Volume 2, p. 799

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2017 November 16

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