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 It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online.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



Lexington, Va., 20 April 1867.

Govr. Frank Fuller

57 Broadway, New York City, N. Y.

My Dear Sir:

I hasten to return my thanks for your invitation to deliver a lecture before the “Peabody Institute of New York and Brooklyn”, and am much indebted to you for the motives which prompted it. For reasons which I am sure you can appreciate, I have felt great reluctance to appear before the public in any manner, and do not think that I could accomplish any good by departing from this course. My opinions would have no influence in correcting the misunderstanding which has existed between the North and South, and which I fear is still destined to involve the country in greater calamities. Apart from these considerations, my present duties occupy all my time, and I am unable to neglect them without inconveniences to others. I am therefore obliged respectfully to decline your invitation.

with great respect, yr. obdt. Svt.

(sgd.) R. E. Lee



Source: Photocopy of letterbook copy, Lee Family Papers, Mss1 L51 c 738, p. 38, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond

Transcribed by Katie Hall, 2018 June 7

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