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 It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online.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



Camp Petersburg 30 June ’64


I was very glad dear Mary to receive your note yesterday & to hear that you were better. I trust you will Continue to improve & soon be well as usual. God Grant that you may be entirely restored in his own good time. Do you recollect what a happy day thirty years ago this was. How many hopes & pleasures it gave truth to? God has been very merciful & kind to us & how thankless & sinful I have been. I pray that he may Continue his mercies & blessings to us & give us a little peace & rest together in this world & finally gather us & all he has given us around his throne in the world to Come! I am encamped in the yard of Mrs Shippen; formerly Miss Gilliam.1 She has been for three years suffering with rheumatism in her joints similar to yourself. Last winter I think she was seized with a violent attack of pneumonia. As she grew better, her rheumatism diminished. It seemed to descend & the swelling of her joints Settled in her feet. She now walks about, having once been obliged to be carried. Her feet are still somewhat swollen I believe, at any rate very tender & Sensitive & her only pain is now there. You Can see yet, in the lineaments of her face, traces of great suffering. She is very kind. Sends me rolls, vegetables & milk & on two occasions at our dinner at Sunset has sent us a tureen of delightful Calf’s head Soup. I hope your attack will pass off in the Same way. The President has just arrived & I must bring my letter to a close. Give much love to my dear daughters. Custis I hope will see you this evg. God bless you all.

Truly & sincerely as ever

R E Lee




1. Jane Gray Shippen Gilliam (1823-1875) was the daughter of Dr. John Gilliam and Elizabeth Smith Shore Gilliam. She was the wife of Thomas Lee Shippen. She was born and died in Petersburg, Virginia.



Source: Transcribed from photocopy of original letter, Lee Family Letters, Mss1 L 51 c 531, Section 26, Virginia Museum of History and Culture, Richmond

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2022 June 21      


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