Head Quarter’s

WHF Lees Cav Div Sept [15?] [1863]


My Dear Mother


Your letter of the 6th inst reached me in Richmond last Friday & as I was going to start for the army, the next morning I deferred my answer until I should have arrived in camp.

On my way down I spent the night with Pa who as usual treated me very well giving all kinds of nice fruits & preparing me to accept for the cover of my person, a hat[,] pair [of] boots & a pair [of] gloves all of which I declined. He took a great fancy to those home-spun shirts, two of which you have, so you had better have them sent down to him. I am very sorry that I left before you could have your talk out, but your daughter mildred was the cause, as she had me talking all the time to Dr. Cocke & family & arguing with herself. I enjoyed myself as much as I would have done anywhere. I am afraid that I am not by nature as agreable as most people nor as good consequently, rather hard to manage & requiring to be delt with softly. I am truely thankful to God for all his Kindness to me through this war & during my life time, but I am afraid I forget it very often, nor am I thankful in the right way, my thankfulness I am afraid is but selfishness & I know that my life spent with out reference to that dread hereafter. I wish I could be made to see how wrong I am. I do see of course but not in the right way, nor do I mend. My Dear mother I have been a sinner all my life & unless God in his infinite mercy & through the mercy of his son & our Savior can make my hard cold heart & dead love grow warm, it seems that I am dead forever.

Pray for me my dear mother in his name that I may be visited by the Holy Ghost & awakened from this deadly lethargy. Give my best love to all the girls & remember me to the Cockes.

We start tomorrow with five days rations for some where I don’t Know.

We all need your prayers, may God who has been so Kind to all of this [sic] for continuing in his mercy for Christ’s sake.

From your dearest son           Rob





Source: Transcribed from photocopy of original letter, Lee Family Papers, Section 23, Mss1 L51 c 478, Virginia Museum of History and Culture, Richmond

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2022 May 17