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 It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online.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



Richmond 17th July [1862]


My dear Annie I received Charlotte’s letter yesterday morning & yours to Custis & after returning from a visit to one of the Hospitals I found poor Maria here who told me Charlotte had come & that she had been waiting here all the morning to see me. I was too tired then to go out again but after dinner went down to Mrs Mosby’s where I found her pretty well after her journey. She had written a note to your papa who had sent Rooney word & he will probably get in to see her this morning as he is out at Atlee’s Station on the Central Rail Road. Mrs Moseby had no vacant room but she kindly let Charlotte have one, belonging to a gentleman who was absent & there was such a violent storm that I was obliged to stay all night & slept with her. The Caskies have most kindly urged her coming here & occupying part of my room but she is waiting to see Fitzhugh. I doubt if she returns to Warrenton so I think I had better find some place in Va where we can assemble as I suppose it would be more agreeable to us all to be in our own state, even if we are not quite so comfortable. As soon as I can find out any such place I will let you know before Mr Leigh goes out again & join you there. Your papa is very anxious for me to go out of town or I would willingly remain here & do my best to comfort the poor wounded men in the Hospitals. But I shall do now what your papa wishes. I gave orders to have Rooney’s Whig paper sent to you at Warrenton. There is but little in the papers now & I suppose you have seen all those published during the late battles. Custis & Mary went up to Carter’s on Monday intending to stay a week & the Caskies insisted upon my coming here. they certainly are the kindest people in the world. I enjoy a bath every morning which is a great comfort. I have an opportunity of sending your letter to Custis today. I hope he will return home from the Country quite well. Mr Payne sent me up a box of apricots but they were much bruised. Mrs Macon & Braxton passed through here on their way to Charles Burwell in Roanoke leaving Betsey & Dr Macon to keep house at Ingleside. Mrs Macon says she never can return to Mt Prospect to live. The White House is a scene of ruin old Bob & Dinah Henry, Maria’s husband & 2 men who have wives in the neighbourhood being all who are left. I fear Maria’s children are all taken off but have sent down these to enquire. There are no Yankees in that vicinity but the whole country is laid waste except in the vicinity of Marlbourne from which they had to decamp before they completed the work of desolation. I hear McClellan disclaims having any thing to do with the White House & says it was burned without his order. They may well be ashamed of such a sacrilegious act which even savages would scarcely have committed. the weather is intensely warm. It seems to be hotter after every storm, but the hard rains clean the filthy street & the lightning & thunder purify the air. Another of Gods mercies for which we should render thanks

yr affect Mother         MC Lee




Source: Photocopy of original letter, Lee Family Papers, Mss1 L51 c 368, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2018 May 8  

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