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 It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online.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



Engineer Bureau,

Richmond, April 3, 1862


General R. E. Lee, C.S.A.,

Headquarters, Richmond:


General: There are now ready for the defense of James River one 8-inch and one 10-inch columbiad, with barbette carriages. These guns were ordered some time since for the battery in the vicinity of Old Fort Powhatan. Do you wish them sent to Harden’s Bluff or Mulberry island Point, or reserved for a position higher up the river?

With great respect, your obedient servant,


Alfred L. Rives,

Acting Chief Engineer Bureau



I do not know the condition of Fort Powhatan. It ought to be armed and river barricaded at once. If guns at present are more wanted at Harden’s or Mulberry Island, or if they will be more available there now than at Fort Powhatan, send them.


R E Lee


Source: The War of the Rebellion, Series 1, Volume 11, Part 3, pp. 417-418

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2018 July 18


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