<br /> Lee Letter: g049

Washington and Lee University

Sender: Robert E. Lee
Recipient: Jefferson Davis

Mr. President

Since my letter of the 10th inst. I in which I stated that I would assign General Gordon to the command of Rodes’ old Brigade, I have received the enclosed petition of all the commissioned officers of Lawton’s Brigade. I respectfully submit it to your better judgement, whether it will not be best, if General Lawton is still unfit for the field (as it would that he is from a late letter I have received from him) to keep General Gordon in his present position where he is so acceptable, and where he is entirely willing to remain, being a Georgian by birth. If you decide that this is best, then a brigade commander will be necessary for Rodes’ Brigade. In reference to this I enclose Genl Rodes’ letter upon that subject. Col. Morgan is highly spoken of by General Rodes. He formerly commanded an Alabama Regiment of Infantry, but retired before the reorganization. Col. O’Neal is the Senior officer in the brigade, and commanded it in the late battles, and had commanded it four or five months. I am not acquainted with anyone of the three officers mentioned by General Rodes, but would recommend the appointment of Col. O’Neal as perhaps the most fit – as he has been identified with his regiment and the brigade by long service as Lieut. Col. and Colonel. I am with great respect Your obt. Servt.

Your obt. Servt.

(Sgd.) R. E. Lee General.

[Endorsed] Official Copy W. H. TAYLOR A.A.G. Head Qurs. A.N.V. 26th May 1863. R. E. Lee General

Recommending Col. E. A. O’Neal 26th. Ala. Regt. for the position of Brig. Genl. and that he be assigned to the command of Rodes’ (old) Brigade.

Notes:

W. J. De Renne CollectionWormsloe, Chatham County, Georgia (1914)

Printed in Douglas Southall Freeman, Lee’s Dispatches, Dispatch No. 49.