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Lexington VA:8 July 1869

 

My dear brother Carter

Your letter of the 6t was only recd yesterday.  I have to leave to my good dame the privilege of maintaining our serial correspondence, & can only write myself when occasion makes it necessary.  I wished for you very much when I was in Alexandria with Smith & subsequently when I paid him a visit at his home, Richland, upon the adjournment of the Episcopal Convention which assembled in Fredericksburg.  His sons were all with him except Henry & Robert, & I was delighted to see them all so happy & comfortable.  Richland is a beautiful farm & apparently very productive, & after this year (page 2 ) they will have it under their own cultivation.  Fitz seems to be the Chief of Staff & Executive officer while the old Commodore occupies the administrative department.  I could only spend Sunday with them, but had one day of grateful happiness.  Sis-Nannie was the presiding divinity that harmonized & made smooth all things--

I have heard from Richardson that the Memoirs are in the hands of the printers & that they would certainly be out this Fall.  I have written to him once or twice recently & such are his replies.  Though he says that the delay has been --?-- to his desire to choose the most favorable time for their appearance I fear it has been more due to his pecuniary embarrassment (page 3) though he ignores all such condition of things & I find his establishment proceeds in its business as heretofore, & is constantly issuing its Series of Southern School books.  Still from what I hear I fear he is embarrassed.  His contract with me was to pay a copyright of ten per cent on the retail price of every copy sold, which I propose as recd to remit to you.  I hope it may be of some value  to you, but I trust that while you may enjoy it as it comes to hand, that you will not anticipate any imaginary or speculative amount, lest you be disappointed.  People of the South, judging from our own condition, cannot indulge in purchasing books for pleasure, & I doubt if more than a few at the north, who may be actuated by (page 4) curiosity & in a desire for criticism, will purchase any.  I am sorry to learn that the payment of your semiannual interest in State Stock will be deferred.  It affects the finances of our College also & pinches us all.  But we must try & do without it.  It will not help matters to complain.  I only hope that it may come at last & that your wheat crop has proved a bountiful one.

I want to take your sister Mary to the Rockbridge Baths as soon as I can make arrangements & to do so, as she desires to try those waters again.  The girls will be with her a little while & I shall endeavor to go for a few weeks to the W. Sulphur Springs, which are always of --?-- to me.  We are all tolerable.  I must refer you to the female --?-- of the house for domestic accounts --Much love to all, Truly & affy

R E Lee