10 June [sic] ’621


My dear Mary

I only recd. yesterday your letter of the 6th announcing the death of our little Grd.son.2 I Cannot help grieving at his loss & Know what a void it will occasion in the hearts of his parents. But when I reflect upon his great gain by his merciful transition from earth to Heaven, I think we ought to rejoice. God grant that we may all join him around the throne of our maker to unite in praise & adoration of the Most High forever. Write to Charlotte for me. When I left F[itzhugh] day before yesterday he had not heard it.

I have directed my trunk to be brought to Custis’ room & now Send the key that he may get out the Key of the box of papers he desires. It is on a bunch which I think is in the drawer of the tray. He will Know it. It is Cuniform & there is one on the bunch that resembles it but will not fit. He had better take both. There are duplicates of the proper Key. The other Key that resembles them is larger. Perry says Custis packed up his flannel pants in his trunk. I hope he may find them there but P. is not entirely reliable. I wish you would place in my trunk the blue coat I return. It is of no use to me here & send me one of the linen Coats in it. The thick linen I prefer. Though old it will answer for me to wear in the house. You must not think I am sick. I have taken Cold this excessively hot weather from being too thickly clad. I am better I hope to day. At any rate have not time to be sick.

Give much love to every body.

Truly & affy

R E Lee




1. The letter is clearly dated June 10, but it is likely that Lee still thought it was June, an understandable mistake given the events of the past few weeks. Lee’s grandson died on June 30, so he is likely writing on the 10th of July, which makes additional sense when he notes Mary told him of the child’s death on the 6th. His grandson’s grave in Richmond is clearly marked with a death date of 1862 June 30, and letters from family support the June 30th death date.

2. William Henry Fitzhugh “Rooney” Lee and Charlotte Lee’s young son, who died of disease.



Source: Transcribed from photocopy of original, Lee Family Papers, Mss1 L51 c 357, Section 18, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2017 April 11