Camp Orange 29 Decr ’63


I recd to night dear Mary your letter of yesterday, & am greatly relieved at learning that our sweet Charlotte suffered so little in her last moments. I am truly grateful to our merciful God that he removed her from us so gently, & gave to us a sign, in the clasping of her hands in silent prayer, that he was taking her to himself. I grieve only for ourselves, & particularly for our dear son, whose sorrow under the circumstances will be inexpressibly grievous. I now long to see him more & more & wish I Could Communicate with him without affording to his jailors the opportunity of rejoicing in his misery. I fear your letters were not recd at Hickory Hill. They would have met with some response. Cousin Annes heart is too loving not to have replied. Although Uncle Wms loved her very dearly, he would have known he could be of no service to her, & might have preferred to be alone in his grief. I am glad to hear your sufferings are less. May God guard & protect you all! Do not send me any thing more. We have a plenty of everything & one turkey left. I want less & Less every day. Give much love to my dear sons & daughters. Ask Carrie to send the accompg letter to Margaret when she has an opportunity. It is to tell her of the safe arrival of some things she sent the soldiers

Very truly & affy yours

R E Lee




Source: Photocopy of original letter, Lee Family Papers, Mss1 L51 c 497, Section 24, Virginia Historical society, Richmond

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2017 June 15