Anniversary of Robert E. Lee�s death
By: Calvin E. Johnson,
Jr., Speaker, Writer, Author of book "When America Stood for God,
Family and Country" and member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans
1064 West Mill Drive
Kennesaw, Georgia 30152
Phone: 770 428 0978
A program commemorating the 140th
anniversary of Robert E. Lee�s death is set for Monday, October
11, 2010, featuring a 12:15 PM lecture by Dr. William C. Davis, at
Lee Chapel Auditorium at Washington and Lee University in
Read more at:
The headline from a Richmond newspaper read, quote;
"News of the death of
Robert E. Lee, beloved chieftain of the Southern army, whose
strategy mainly was responsible for the surprising fight staged by
the Confederacy, brought a two-day halt to Richmond's business
The American flag,
which Robert E. Lee had defended as a soldier, flew at half mast
in Lexington, Virginia.
General Lee died at his home at Lexington, Virginia at 9:30 AM on
Wednesday, October 12, 1870. His last great deed came after the
War Between the States when he accepted the presidency of
Washington College, now Washington and Lee University. He saved
the financially troubled college and helped many young people
further their education.
Some write that Robert E. Lee suffered a cerebral hemorrhage on
September 28, 1870, but was thought to greatly improve until
October 12th, when he took a turn for the worse. His condition
seemed more hopeless when his doctor told him, "General you must
make haste and get well---Traveller---has been standing too long
in his stable and needs exercise."
Virginia Military Institute (VMI) Cadet William Nalle said in a
letter home to his mother, dated October 16, 1870, quote;
"I suppose of course
that you have all read full accounts of Gen Lee's death in the
papers. He died on the morning of the 12th at about half past
nine. All business was suspended at once all over the country and
town, and all duties, military and academic suspended at the
Institute, and all the black crape and all similar black material
in Lexington, was used up at once, and they had to send on to
Lynchburg for more. Every cadet had black crape issued to him, and
an order was published at once requiring us to wear it as a badge
of mourning for six months." unquote
Read entire letter on
Virginia Military Institute website at:
The rains and flooding were the worse of Virginia�s history on the
day General Lee died. On Wednesday, October 12, 1870, in the
presence of his family, Lee quietly passed away.
The church bells rang as the sad news passed through Washington
College, Virginia Military Institute, the town of Lexington and
the nation. Cadets from VMI College carried the remains of the old
soldier to Lee Chapel where he laid in state.
Memorial meetings were held throughout the South and as far North
as New York. At Washington College in Lexington eulogies were
delivered by: Reverend Pemberton, Reverend W.S. White--Stonewall
Jackson's Pastor and Reverend J. William Jones. Former Confederate
President Jefferson Davis brought the eulogy in Richmond,
Virginia. Lee was also eulogized in Great Britain.
When all settled down, Mrs. Robert E. Lee said, "If he had
succeeded in gaining by the sword all the South expected and hoped
for, he could not have been more honored and lamented."
Many thousands witnessed Lee's funeral procession marching through
the town of Lexington, Virginia, with muffled drums and the
artillery firing as the hearse was driven to the school's chapel
where he was buried.
US President Dwight D. Eisenhower knew and appreciated our
nation�s rich history. President Eisenhower was criticized for
displaying a portrait of Robert E. Lee in his office. This was
part of his response; quote
"Robert E. Lee was, in
my estimation, one of the supremely gifted men produced by this
Christian-gentleman's last words were, "Strike the Tent."