Richmond, Augt. 18, 1862


Miss Annie C. Lee

Jones Springs, near

Warrenton, N.C.


My Dear Annie and Agnes:

Pa’ handed me a letter from each of you, respectively, of the 3rd and 1st inst, and asked me to answer them for him. I have not had a chance before now, and as my fingers are not yet very supple, and as I have a good deal of writing to do you will have to be contented with a short one from me at this time. I will endeavor to do better hereafter.

Pa is at Gordonsville as you perhaps know—Genl G. W. Smith is in command of the forces around Richmond, although it is reported this morning that McClellan has gone off all together, if which is true, I suppose Genl G. W. will move most of his forces away.

I received a note from Mim this morning. she seems to be enjoying herself at Hickory Hill and does not express the least intention for either herself or Charlotte’s going to Jones’.

Fitzy is a Brig. Gen of Cavalry, as you are perhaps aware. He and Rooney have both gone up towards Gordonsville, I am told.

Mrs. Caskie has been and is quite ill, but she seems to be getting better slowly from day to day. Sister has been nursing her, but was made sick herself and was confined to her bed for a day or so. She was sitting up yesterday evening, and expected to be down stairs to day.

Mrs. Stevenson (Miss Mary Shaaf) and Mrs. Eugene Webster went off to Georgetown about a week ago on a vessel under the control of Col. Lorenzo Thomas, the Commissioner on the part of the U. States for the general exchange of prisoners. I presume they reached their destination in safety and comfort.

Sister and I returned from Uncle Carters two weeks ago and have been here during all the hot weather. We are both a little pulled down by it. We had a very pleasant visit at Uncle Carters of three weeks, although the weather was very hot most of the time and left them all well.

Sister has been to Drury’s Bluff since her return to town, and saw Uncle Smith.

I believe most of your friends are out of town. Miss Mary Lyons is at home and has had an attack of typhoid fever, but is now better. I have not been able to get out to see them.

I imagine many of the citizens will be obliged to stay away from Richmond this winter on account of the scarcity of food and fuel, at least so the wise ones say. I don’t know what is to become of you women. Mildred wishes to go to school, I understand, and if she can hear of one to her fancy, I think her wishes had best be gratified in this respect.

The rest of you will have to fix yourselves in some safe place where food and fuel are abundant.

What think of Lexington, Va.? It is safe now. How long it will continue so, it is impossible to say. How would you like to spend the winter at the south?

Love to Mrs. Annie Lee, and Mildred and believe me your aff. Brother – Custis



Source: James Lewis Howe Papers, Washington and Lee University

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2018 December 11