Robert E. Lee’s 202nd Birthday
By: Calvin E.
1064 West Mill Drive
770 428 0978
Sir Winston Churchill
called General Robert E. Lee, quote ‘one of the noblest Americans
who ever lived.’ Unquote
Please let me call to your attention that
is the 202nd birthday of Robert E. Lee, whose memory is
still dear in the hearts of many Southerners. Why is this man so
honored in the South and respected in the North? Lee was even
respected by the soldiers of Union blue who fought against him
during the War Between the States.
What is your
community doing to commemorate the birthday of this great
100th birthday in
1907, Charles Francis Adams, Jr., a former Union Commander and
grandson of US
President John Quincy Adams,
spoke in tribute to Robert E. Lee at
and Lee College’s
in Lexington, Virginia. His speech was printed in both Northern
and Southern newspapers and is said to had lifted Lee to a renewed
respect among the
Read about the
upcoming January 2009 events for Robert E. Lee and
Dr. Edward C. Smith, respected
African-American Professor of History at
in Washington, D.C., told the audience in Atlanta, Ga. during a
1995 Robert E.
birthday event, quote ‘Dr.
Martin Luther King
and Robert E. Lee were individuals worthy of emulation because
they understood history.’
Lee’s birthday, sadly, is not
included on many calendars but the
Division Sons of Confederate Veterans
have not forgotten and will sponsor their annual Robert E. Lee
Birthday Celebration in
January 24th, 2009,
at the Old Capitol Building.
school holiday for Dr. King’s birthday but do
young people know that January is also the birthday month for
Booker T. Washington,
America’s great African-American Educator, wrote in 1910, quote ‘The
first white people in America, certainly the first in the South to
exhibit their interest in the reaching of the Negro and saving his
soul through the medium of the Sunday-school were Robert E. Lee
and Stonewall Jackson.’
American President’s who have paid
tribute to Lee include:
Franklin D. Roosevelt,
who spoke during the 1930s at a Lee statue dedication in Dallas,
Texas, Theodore ‘Teddy’ Roosevelt and
who proudly displayed a portrait of Lee in his presidential
During a tour
through the South in 1905,
President Theodore Roosevelt
told the aged Confederate Veterans in Richmond, Virginia, quote,
‘Here I greet you in the shadow
of the statue of your Commander, General Robert E. Lee. You and he
left us memories which are part of the memories bequeathed to the
entire nation by all the Americans who fought in the War Between
the States.’ Unquote
Stonewall Jackson and Robert E. Lee was dedicated on May 9, 1970.
William Holmes Borders, a noted African-American theologian and
pastor of the Wheat Avenue Baptist Church, was asked to give the
invocation. The many dignitaries attending this historic event
United States Vice President Spiro
Thousands of people bring their families each year to see this
memorial to these three great Americans.
Who was Robert E.
Lee that has been praised by both Black and White Americans and
people from around the world?
Robert E. Lee,
a man whose
have been studied worldwide, was an American soldier, Educator,
Christian gentlemen, husband and father. Lee said quote, ‘All the
South has ever desired was that the Union, as established by our
forefathers, should be preserved, and that the government, as
originally organized, should be administered in purity and truth.’
Robert E. Lee was
on Jan. 19,
1807, at ‘Stratford’ in
Westmoreland County, Virginia.
The winter was cold and the fireplaces were little help for
Robert’s mother, Ann Hill (Carter) Lee, who suffered from a severe
Ann Lee named her
son ‘Robert Edward’ after two of her brothers.
Robert E. Lee
undoubtedly acquired his love of country from those who lived
His Father, ‘Light Horse’ Harry was a hero of the revolution and
served three terms as governor of Virginia and as a member of the
United States House of Representatives. Two members of his family
also signed the
Declaration of Independence.
Lee was educated at
the schools of
and he received an appointment to
in 1825. He graduated in 1829, second in his class and without a
Robert E. Lee’s
first assignment was to
to supervise the construction of Fort Pulaski.
While serving as
of Engineers at
Lee wed Mary Ann Randolph Custis. Robert and Mary had grown up
together, Mary was the daughter of
Washington Parke Custis,
the Grandson of
and adopted son of
Mary was an
only child; therefore, she inherited Arlington House, across the
from Washington, D.C., where she and Robert E. Lee raised seven
children, three boys and four girls.
were slow. In 1836, Lee was appointed to
Lieutenant. In 1838, with the rank of Captain,
Robert E. Lee fought in the War with Mexico and was wounded at the
Superintendent of West Point
in 1852 and is considered one of the best superintendents in that
Abraham Lincoln offered command of the
to Lee in 1861, but he refused. He said, ‘I cannot raise my hand
against my birthplace, my home, my children.’
Mansion ‘Arlington House’ would be occupied by Federals, who would
turn the estate into a war cemetery. Today Arlington House is
preserved by the National Park Service as a Memorial to Robert E.
Lee served as
President Jefferson Davis,
on June 1,
1862, commanded the legendary
Army of Northern
terrible years of death and destruction, Gen. Robert E. Lee met
Gen. Ulysses S.
at Appomattox Courthouse in Virginia and ended their battles.
Lee was called
Marse Robert, Uncle Robert and Marble Man.
Lee was a
proud of his name and heritage. After the War Between the States,
he was offered $50,000 for the use of his name. His reply was:
‘Sirs, my name is the heritage of my parents. It is all I have and
it is not for sale.’ His refusal came at a time when he had
In the fall of
1865, Lee was offered and accepted the presidency of troubled
in Lexington, Virginia. The school was later renamed
in his honor.
Robert E. Lee
died of a heart attack at 9:30 AM
on the morning of October 12, 1870, at Washington College. His
last words were ‘Strike the tent.’ He was 63 years of age.
He is buried at
on the school grounds with his family and near his favorite horse,
On this his 202nd
birthday let us ponder the words he wrote to Annette Carter in
1868: ‘I grieve for posterity, for American Principles and
Robert E. Lee was a
great American who should not be forgotten.
America Stood for God, Family and Country
"When America Stood for God, Family and
Calvin E. Johnson, Jr.
You will find over 20 stories that include: General
Robert E. Lee, the Jefferson Davis Funeral Train, God
Bless Judge Roy Moore and remembering the late great
Georgia Governor Lester G. Maddox. This is a great
reference for Confederate History Month and everyday.
Only $10.00 per copy and $3.00 for postage and handling
for a total of $13.00.
Make checks payable to Calvin Johnson and send check to:
1064 West Mill Drive
Kennesaw, Georgia 30152.
Call: (770) 428-0978, or send an email to
Calvin Johnson if you
Calvin Johnson has been a member of the Sons of
Confederate Veterans for over 33 years.
Lest We Forget to teach our children the truth of
Calvin E. Johnson, Jr.
Sons of Confederate Veterans,
Chattahoochee Guards 1639
Chairman, Georgia Div. SCV, Confederate History Month
Volunteer Caretaker of Gilgal Church Battlefield.
eMail this Page