Camp near Orange CtHouse

23 Aug ‘63


I have recd dear Mary your letter of the 13th from the Warm Springs. I hope you may recognize some improvement in your disease from the effects of the baths after you leave them, even should even should [sic] none be apparent at present. I think you did well in leaving the Hot for awhile. The warm will be an agreeable change for the whole party & I hope may be beneficial. I am very sorry Chass is sick. I hope it is not much & that she will soon be well & see her Fitzhugh. Custis has heard from him by some late arrival. He is reported doing well walking about, & as having every thing he wants except his liberty. That I trust he will have in time. You may see by the papers that a distinguished arrival at Washington is chronicled in the papers of that city. Miss Catharine Burke. She is reported to have given interesting accounts of the Lee family. There is no account on any subject true or false which they wish propagated if they let her know what it is that she will not state. I wish them joy of their prize & think the Confederacy has met with a happy riddance. I enclose a letter from Edwd Childe & must ask you to give all his messages to his Cousins &c. He has an affectionate disposition.

As regards the right he expresses at his peculiar condition &c, it is not clear on which side he would take service. I am glad he is able to spend his time so pleasantly. I hope it is also profitably passed. I do not recollect having told you of having met in the neighborhood our cousin Mary Randolph of eastern view. She has been staying with a Mrs. Taliafero, who was a Miss Carter, sister I believe of Alfred Carter, who married Charles Randolphs daughter. Their daughter Mittie is also with Mrs. T___ Mrs Randolph has now gone to Norwood, & her daughter Mittie is at Kinloch. Buckner who has been laid up with some tumour on his arm, & was therefore on furlough accompd his mother. Alfred Randolph is Chaplain at Danville & has with him his little wife. I know but few of the residents & have but little time to visit them. My Camp is near a Mr Erasmus Taylor, who has been very kind in Contributing to our Comfort. His wife sends us every day some buttermilk, loaf bread, ice & such vegetables as she has. I cannot get her to desist, though have made two special visits to that effect. All the ladies have come on a visit to the army. Mrs Ewell, Mrs Walker, Mrs Heth, &c &c. it has been & is intensely hot. Forbidding all operations. Genl meads Army is north of the Rappk along the Orange & Alexa R. R. in Fauquier & Prince Wm. He is very quiet. Give much love to all. Very truly & affy R E Lee


P.S. I have written while Major M. has been reading to me a long paper & my attention has been so much divided, you must excuse mistakes                REL         




Source: Lee Family Papers, Mss1 L51 c 474, Section 23, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2017 November 14