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 It contains published and unpublished items, some well known to historians, others that are rare or have never before been put online.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


 

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Richland Garrisonville P.O

Stafford Co Va    Oct 1 1867

My dear old “K,”

 

Upon my arrival home a few days ago from quite a sojourn at the Springs I found your Kind letter of Aug 12. I was indeed glad once more to hear from you as I feared you had probably been executed with Maximillian, though I saw no account of your last speech, or any last letter to Miss Lydia Biddle, or any notice of a pack of cards, pipe shirt collar and pr of spurs that I Knew you would have left me. I rejoice in common with your numerous friends that you are spared to us all. Now do stay at home. Your neck has made two narrow escapes, for it was in danger for having rebelled against “the best gov: the world ever saw” and secondly in having espoused the cause of the late Emperor of Mexico. Why are you so restless? Here am I busy ploughing and mowing reaping and sowing as Iverson used to sing about at Carlisle, perfectly contented. don’t care a damn to vote, am glad I have sinned beyond forgiveness. Love the radicals about as much as I do Mr. Johnson, and in the language of the “old rebel” “Am glad I fit agin it, only wish I’d won”; and aint gwine to ax no parding for anything I’ve done.”

I am living as I believe I told you before on the Potomac River some 40 miles below Washington am about 4 above Aquia cr: and am going to make a model farmer. I just wish you could see Squire Lee of Stafford as he rides through the growing corn his broad brim hat and long coat tails oscillating against the golden grain. I work 4 negro men 1 half negro and half white. 1 Dutchman. 1 woman and two boys (black), have 4 horses. 1 lame 1 blind 1 thickminded and one with only 1 eye. Still unreconstructed as I am I raise more corn than I ever got from the quartermaster. I spent 6 weeks delightfully at the Sweet Springs, “White Sulphur” and Rockbridge alum. At the former met a most charming lady from St. Louis, and though she only remained three days after my arrival, made more havoc met my poor palpitating heart than any one has ever succeeded in doing before in that length of time anyhow. Mr “K” do go and see her she said she Knew you and write me how she is what she says about me, who she is engaged to, if anyone. Where she is. What she wants? And if I must come to St. Louis. I’m a man of the world, been in society from Canterbury Hall in ny to Petras Negras (opposite Fort Duncan) in the Rio Grande and have only had 3 love affairs in the course of a long life, but I tell you in confidence Kimmel that had she remained three days longer only three. She must have been Mrs Lee or I would have hurt worse than when that horse Kicked me at Carlisle.

But her name! you are impatient to Know. Please get her Photograph for me. Now I suppose I must out with it or you cant attend to my inquiries. It is. She calls herself rather infact she was christened Miss Cornelia Polk of St. Louis a daughter of Preston Polk formerly US senator was at the springs with mr and mrs Breden

I sincerely trust your father is better and that this may find you prospering. Do remember me to all my friends in your section and “K” write to your old

friend  Fitz

 

 

 

 

Source: Digital photograph of original letter, Fitzhugh Lee Papers, Earl Gregg Swem Library Special Collections, College of William and Mary

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2018 December 5                   

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