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 It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online.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




Hd Qrs CS Armies

28th March 1865

Hon. Secty of War



I am much encouraged by the liberality displayed by the farmers of Va & N Carolina in forwarding supplies to the railroads for the army. We are now supplied to the 3rd April, which is a better condition of affairs than has existed for many months. I am informed that at the rate provisions are being collected on the railroads, there will be no difficulty in supplying the army, provided the railroads will transport it. This can only be done by causing the trains on the N Carolina road, coming to Greensboro from Raleigh or Charlotte with supplies, to run through to Danville without transhipment at Greensboro, and also that the same trains upon returning shall not stop at Greensboro, but proceed directly back towards Raleigh or Charlotte as the case maybe to load up again with supplies. Also the trains leaving Danville and Lynchburg with supplies for that part of the army here, must be required to come directly through to Petersburg without transhipment at Burksville and return to Danville and Lynchburg in like manner. I am informed that if these arrangements can be made, supplies can be accumulated. In view of the urgent importance of this subject involving as it does our ability to retain our position, I urge the adoption of the foregoing regulations. If necessary, officers should be made to accompany each train back to enforce them, and I beg that you will secure the immediate adoption of them by the railroad companies. The public convenience must be made to yield to the public safety, and no passenger trains or others not used for transporting public freight should be allowed to interfere.  It must also be remembered that if the supplies now being brought forward are not removed from the depots they may be wholly lost to the army.

Very respectfully

Your obt. servt.

R E Lee



March 28 65

Referred to q m Genl for report. I think some of the written suggestions, are probably impracticable at present, but your report will furnish me material for an answer


Sec of War


Respectfully referred to Maj. [illegible]

By order QM Genl


Lt Col [illegible]



Source: Photocopy of original letter, The Valentine, Richmond

Transcribed by Katie Hall, 2018 June 5

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