Richmond, January 12, 1863

General R. E. Lee, Fredericksburg, Va.:


I have received the following dispatch from Governor Vance:


Can you not spare General Lee to come down a few days and survey the situation I North Carolina? It would inspire confidence. A defeat here would be disastrous in more ways than one.


I send it to you to decide as to compliance with the request. Your presence there would be important; indeed, seems necessary. You will know whether it is safe to absent yourself for a few days.

Jefferson Davis



Source: The War of the Rebellion, Series 1, Volume 21, p. 1088

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2018 March 1