Ringgold Bks: Texas


1 November 1856


Your letter of the 9th Aug: My dear brother Childe has just reached me. It has given me unspeakable gratification to hear from you. I measure your feelings by my own & know how miserable they must be. Her[1] remembrance of me in the last moments of life, in the pain of separation from all that was dear to her in this world & in view of the brightness of the next, is sweet to me beyond expression. God knows how much I cherish her memory, & how dear to me has ever been her love. A thousand regrets continually besiege me, at my long separation from her, & the hope with which I constantly beguiled myself of an ultimate reunion, is now my torture. But I trust in the mercy of our father in Heaven to unite us in that world where we shall know no separation No Misery! I am distressed beyond measure at the thought of not being able to see you during your visit to this Country.[2] I hope you will go to Arlington & make that your home while you remain. Though it will not furnish the Comforts to which you are accustomed. I know you will find the most Cordial welcome, & the truest sympathy in the hearts of the occupants. Write to me how you are & all about yourself & children. Everything relating to you will be gratifying to me. Leave at A[rlington] for me some of her beautiful hair, I wish to twine it into a braid with some of our dear Mothers. I hope you left Florence & her child well & happy, & that you will experience every joy & Comfort in the society of your children. You must give much love to them for me. I feel that you & them are dearer to me now than ever.  

I wrote to you my dear brother Childe on first learning our dreadful bereavement. I will write again as soon as I hear of your arrival in this Country. I feel unable at this time to say more. I leave tomorrow for Fort Brown where I shall probably be detained all this month, & expect to be in San Antonio about the middle of December. The separation from my dear wife & children is very grievous to me, & I do not know how long I can stand it. I fear it will eventually drive me from the Service. May God guard & protect you & all belonging to you is the fervent prayer of your affectionate brother


R E Lee

To E V Childe


Source: The Archives of the Robert E. Lee Memorial Foundation, Papers of the Lee Family, Box 3, M2012.009, Jessie Ball duPont Library, Stratford Hall.

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2015 September 15

[1] Childe’s mother Mildred Lee Childe.

[2] He was in France.