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 It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online.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



Petersburg         21 Feby ‘65


My dear Mary


After sending my note this morning I recd from the Express office the bag of socks, the acknowledgement of which by Major Janny, I herewith enclose. You will see that your Count was Correct. You will have to send down your offerings as soon as you can & bring your works to a close, for I think Genl Grant will move against us soon, within a week if nothing prevents, & no man can tell what may be the result. Sherman & Schofield are both advancing & seem to have every thing their own way, but trusting in a merciful God, who does not always give the battle to the strong, I pray we may not be overwhelmed. I shall however endeavour to do my duty & fight to the last. Should it be necessary to abandon our position to prevent being surrounded what will you do? Will you remain or leave the city? You must consider the question & make up your mind. You will be able to retain nothing in the house, & I do not see how you can live, or where go. It is a fearful condition & we must rely for guidance & protection upon a kind Providence. May it guard & Comfort you. Give much love to all. Tell Daughter to give Lizzie the bag of cakes for her Doll. They are all hearts. I return the bag, which contained the socks.

very truly & affly

R E Lee




Source: Photocopy of original letter, Lee Family Papers, Mss1 L51 c 572, Section 29, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2017 November 9 

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