Robert E. Lee

Elijah Smead

U.S. Mil. Acady.

May 24, 1854

Dear Sir,

I have been anxious to relieve the anxiety which I know my former letter occasioned you about your son; but though his symptoms are more favorable, this case far more encouraging than when I wrote, they are not such as enables his attending Surgeon to pronounce with certainty as to his recovery—He has however been slowly improving for the last two or three days. Is entirely conscious of everything that occurs around him—converses a little with his attendants, has read his letters &c. I am led by these favourable symptoms to hope for his final recovery, & have thought that this pleasing change in his condition would be gratifying to you.

I remain Very resply. Yr. obt SrvtSigned/ R. E. Lee Br. Col:
Supt: Mil: Acady

Superintendent’s Daily Correspondence
United States Military Academy

Superintendent’s Letter Book No. 3, pp. 105–6. Addressed “Elijah Smead Esq. Talbotton, Georgia”