Head Quarters Army No. Va.

April 2nd 1863

Maj. Gen. J. B. Hood

Cmndg Div

My dear General,

I have recd your letter of the 29th ult. and I assure you that you cannot regret your separation from this army half as much as I do your absence, & the absence of your fine division. But my distress is a hundredfold aggravated by the accounts that occasionally reach me of the conduct of your men. I enclose a slip taken from one of the Richmond papers. I have heard in addition that it is stated by the Examiner, that two of our citizens have been wantonly murdered by some of your men while robbing their establishment. I know such conduct is as much reprobated by you & by the good men of your division as it can be by myself. I trust these charges are not true. If so the reputation of your division should be vindicated. If true, the guilty should be identified & punished. It is not just to your division or yourself, who have gained laurels on every battlefield, that they played be stigmatized in every newspaper as robbers & murderers. The true men of your division demand that they should not be classed with thieves & cutthroats. If there are any such all should unite in their apprehension & punishment. I hope you will take the matter in hand at once for your own sake & for the sake of the country, and never cease until it is accomplished.

I hope we shall soon be together again, but absent or present

I am very truly yours

RE Lee



Source: The Lost Papers of Confederate General John Bell Hood, edited by Stephen M. Hood, pp. 187-188

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2018 November 30