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West Point       11 March ‘54


My dearest Markie


I have just recd your good long letter of the 7th containing the good news that you & our dear father & all at A[rlington] were well. Whenever & as often as such joyful tidings reach us, I breathe a long & fervent thanksgiving to the merciful & Almighty father in Heaven for its continuance & pray for the preservation & happiness of you all. I must now also thank you Markie for your great kindness & affection to him & us. But I will endeavour to do so better & more full in person when we meet. With your letter came one from the Dept requiring my presence in Washn. I have written to Capt Cullum who is on duty in New York to return to the Point, but as the letter to him will go with this to you, he may not get it in time to get up this evg. At any rate tomorrow being Sunday, I shall not be able to leave till Monday morg nor be in Washington before tuesday. If in time I shall immediately attend the Comm: in Cong, but must get over to A[rlington] tuesday night if possible. If therefore this reaches you in time, will you ask your uncle to Send some one over for my trunk, which will be at Willards Hotel, where he will also hear of me. I can very easily ride to Georgetown & walk up, should I be able to come over, though it is possible I may be obliged to remain in the city all night, as I must Consult the Convenience & necessity of the business that calls me on – I shall however if I live get to A to see him & you – As I have other letters to prepare for this mail, I will only add that we are all well, & that my heart leaps within me at the thought of soon revisiting Dear A & all its inmates scenes & associations. If M. knew I was writing she would have many messages although I believe she wrote only yesterday. I will however carry them

Truly & affectionately

your Cousin

R E Lee

Best love to the Major & Aunt A






Source: Letters of Robert E. Lee to Martha Custis Williams, 1844-1870, Huntington Library, San Marino, California          

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2017 September 13