Richmond Stratford County Va Jany 23rd/66


My dear Robert-

I am so sorry I did not meet with you in Richmond - I was obliged to leave here on Monday the 8th. and I see by the papers arrived on the following evening.  I had made an arrangement with Fitz to meet me at ABrooks Station, which is 13 miles from this place and the worse roads man or horse ever traveled over.  The was no way of getting a letter to him- as we live in a remote part of the world.  Beyond the rail facilities away down in the Neck, between AChapawamsic Creek,@ and the aguia.  I wrote to you from Richmond, and was disappointed in not hearing from you before I came away - I saw F & Agnes, not Rob Ed - The little fellow dashing through while I was there .  The papers said you took rooms at the ASpotswood,@ where were your friends that you had to put up at a public house?  I heard you were to stay at Mr Warwicks - But the sweet attraction to that house had flown away on matrimonial wings - I had a sweet kiss from her - It was the first and last I fear - as the other had gone to AYankee Land@- I never see the papers - or get a letter, unless I --?-- away up to Alexandria - If there was a post office at AAquia Creek Landing@ I could get the mail daily at the Boats, & cars came in twice in the 24 hours - I have my three sons with me and find it hard to keep the bright   fires going - It is snowing now - and no work at the mill, when the work  ought to be as soon as the weather permits, we commence fencing and when I get through with the boys in that science, shall apply for a professorship - so keep a place open for one of your numerous nephews - I sent for the tax bills which I have doing.  It was necessary to pay the direct tax - or the long woods(?_) have been sold for the taxes, only- and to get it back it would have been troublesome - Your owe me one thing upon the station - I had to pay the tax for 1860 as the old sheriff, Mr. Dowell, had paid it and came to me with the bill in hand to reimburse him - I can make it out $17.61 and the $7.26 for your track, make the small sum of $24.87 - Please if convenient, send the money to Burke & Herbert brokers, or John Dangerfield, by any one going soon - I am in a tight place for money - or would tell you to give it to my dear Bob, for his pocket money - How does the little fellow get on & I hope he gives you some trouble to remember him by.  When his education is over his godmother, pays his expenses until the farm can pay its way - I did not pay the state tax for the years 1861,2,3,4 & 5 deferring to the action of the Legislature - When there is no one on your track - It is part of the mill track outside the district line - That inside has been sold as I wrote you - You had better get copies due to look out for it - as it is very near or may join his home there and as he lives at his country seat - He may like to fence the land in - and use it for the taxes.

My love to my sister and a kiss to Mildred.  I think she is the only daughter with --?--  - Love to Custis, my old chum.  Please tell all about yrself and any other news you can pick up - all well in this new abode but the life is hard.  No butter- little milk- and with corn cake & milk things- there is always a certain vacuum to fill up by something more palatable - or the air gets in - and plays the mischief with --?--   Good bye wrote from your fond brother S. S. Lee



Note: This letter was difficult to transcribe inasmuch as the writer wrote over part of the first page.  RCP 11DEC 01.