OG-Memoirs of Robert E. Lee 5

Book Update: Memoirs of Robert E. Lee

Memoirs of Robert E. Lee his Military and Personal History Embracing a Large Amount of Information Hitherto Unpublished by A.L. Long, a former military secretary to General Lee, was published in 1887 by J. M. Stoddart & Company.  This volume’s full text is searchable by Accessible Archives subscribers. It can be found in our The Civil War Part III. The Generals Perspective.

Dedicated to the Disabled Confederate Soldiers:

The gallant men with whom he has a right to sympathize, the author respectfully dedicates the following pages.

A.L. Long,
Charlottesville, Virginia

Dedication: Memoirs of Robert E. Lee

Dedication: Memoirs of Robert E. Lee


To overcome the inactivity to which loss of sight has for some years subjected me, I have sought occupation in recording the recollection of familiar events. Having obtained a slate prepared for the use of the blind, I soon learned to write with a moderate degree of legibility. In order to excite a pleasing interest in my work, I undertook something that might prove of future benefit. Having served on General Lee’s personal staff during the most important period of his military career, I began an eye-witness narrative of his campaigns in the war between the States. In the execution of my work I received valuable assistance from my wife and daughter, my two sons, and Miss Lucy Shackelford (now Mrs. Charles Walker), all of whom lovingly and faithfully served me as copyists and readers. I am also indebted to Colonel C. S. Venable of General Lee’s staff, Major Green Peyton of Rodes’s staff, and Major S. V. Southall of my own staff, for indispensable aid in reviewing my manuscript, informing me of facts that had not come to my knowledge or reminding me of such as had escaped my recollection. My work is now completed, and I offer it to the public, hoping it may prove of value as a record of events which passed under my own observation, and many of which have been described directly from my notes made at the time of their occurrence. It is not intended to be a history of the war in detail, but a statement of my personal knowledge of General Lee’s life, actions, and character, and of the part played by him in the great events of which he was the ruling spirit.

After receiving my manuscript the publishers desired a change of plan which would embrace some of the interesting social and domestic features of General Lee’s life. This part of the work has been edited and conducted through an arrangement with the publishers by General Marcus J. Wright, formerly of the Confederate Army of Tennessee, but now, and for some years past, agent of the United States War Department for the collection of Confederate records. My wife has rendered important aid in this part of the work by contributing personal incidents and other valuable material obtained through her friendly relations with the family of General Lee. It is also proper to acknowledge the use of the publications of Rev. J. W. Jones, Colonel Walter H. Taylor, Miss Emily Mason, the Southern Historical Society papers, Swinton, and the Report of the Congressional Committee on the Conduct of the War (Federal). I have had occasion to refer to the Memoirs of General Grant and The Campaigns of General J. E. B. Stuart, by Major H. B. McClellan. I have been greatly encouraged in the publication of this work by the cordial concurrence of General G. W. Custis Lee, General W. H. F. Lee, Major R. E. Lee, Miss Mildred Lee, Governor Fitz Lee, and other members of the family.

I further desire to acknowledge my indebtedness to Colonel R. N. Scott, U. S. A., for opportunity afforded me at the War Records Office of studying official reports, maps, and the confidential letter-books of General Lee, relating to the events described in the present volume, many of which have never hitherto been published, and which will prove of great value and interest both in rightly understanding military operations and in estimating the character and genius of that great soldier.

A.L. Long


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The Wireless Phone – Where did it come from?

In today’s world, the wireless phone (aka mobile phone, aka cell phone) is as common as clothing. Wireless phones impact a lot in our lives and in every walk of life. From seniors to my 6 year-old granddaughter, a wireless phone is a must. Wireless phones allow us to communicate with our friends and loved ones, multitasking is an outgrowth of wireless phones, and wireless phones allow us to listen to our music, watch movies, and create selfies.

But, where did wireless phones come from? Who helped develop them?

Many people believe that wireless phones were created in the early 1970s and moved to “cellular” in the 1980s. Actually. the invention and development of the wireless phone goes back to the turn of the 20th century. These early phones were unwieldly, cumbersome, and were not really portable.

This article from Frank Leslie’s Weekly, speaks to the early development and excitement of wireless phones…

Frank Leslie’s Weekly, published from 1855 to 1922, was an American illustrated news publication started by publisher and illustrator Frank Leslie. While only 30 copies of the first edition were printed, by 1897 its circulation had grown to an estimated 65,000 copies.

Telephoning without Wires: Is It Practicable?

The recent experiments of Professor Frederick Collins with the wireless telephone at Narberth, Penn., a suburb of Philadelphia, have attracted much attention. Signor A. Marconi, inventor of the wireless telegraphy, commenting on Professor Collins’s experiments to a representative of Leslie’s Weekly, said:

The system used by Professor Collins is good only for short distances. Under ordinary circumstances the limit would be about a mile. I have tried the same experiments myself, and for long distances the system is not successful.


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Women Past and Present (October 1879)

This list appeared in National Citizen and Ballot Box in October 1879. The National Citizen and Ballot Box was a monthly journal deeply involved in the roots of the American feminist movement. It was owned and edited by Matilda Joslyn Gage, American women’s rights advocate, who helped to lead and publicize the suffrage movement in the United States.

Women Past and Present

KADIJAH, the first wife of Mahomet, and the only one during her life, was celebrated by him, as the “Woman of Faith,” she having embraced his doctrines and believed in him, when he was poor, unknown and without power. Kadijah was a rich widow of noble family, much older than Mahomet. She was engaged in commerce; her caravans traversed the desert, the camels laden with tissues and Indian pearls. She gave to Mahomet the direction of her business, which he conducted so much to her satisfaction that she sent, according to Arab custom, an old man to him to explain her feelings and suggest marriage. Mahomet treated her ever with the greatest deference, taking no other wife while she lived; neither did he absorb her property, not touching it without her permission. Two sons, who died in their infancy, and four daughters who lived and accepted his faith, were the results of this union.

AISHE (Ayesha) was of marvellous beauty and the favorite wife of Mahomet. He married her when she was but eight years of age. She was endowed with all the charms of mind and body most esteemed by the Arabs; elegant figure, majestic gait, lustrous humid eyes, “like a star in a well,” abundant dark hair. She was Mahomet’s counsellor and his confidant. Although the charms of Aiche were sung by poets and celebrated in Arab traditions, she is said to have retained the love of Mahomet by the power of her intellect, her wise counsels and her faithfulness. In his old age, she alone knew the secrets of his heart.

ZAYNAH, another of Mahomet’s wives, was distinguished among all his wives for her benevolence and charity. She was called “the Mother of the Poor.”

FATIMA was the youngest daughter of Kadijah and Mahomet. From her are descended the green-turbaned Musselmans who style themselves sherife, and claim to have in their veins some of the blood of the prophet.

This item, and others like it, can be found in Accessible Archive’s Newspapers Collection. We can provide access to fully searchable newspapers by and for women including The Lily, The Revolution, and the National Citizen and Ballot Box.
Marie Antoinette

Marie Antoinette

MARIE ANTOINETTE, the lovely queen of France who was sacrifieed during the Reign of Terror, is described as tall, admirably proportioned, with lovely arms, perfectly shaped hands and charming feet, holding her head very upright, with a majesty which did not detract from her sweetness, and walking better than any woman in France,—a very elegant and beautiful woman. Her complexion is described as extremely brilliant, and delicately tinted. But as sweet and as gracious and as beautiful as she was, she failed to gain the French people’s heart, who named her in derision, “The Austrian.” and who at last guillotined her.

MADAME Louise Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun was a celebrated portrait painter who died in Paris in 1842, at the age of 87. She inherited her talent from her father, and before she was fourteen her work had introduced her to the public and brought her the notice of eminent artists. At twenty, she married a man who dissipated her large earnings in low company and gambling. Soon after her marriage, her rooms were the evening resort of noblemen, great ladies, courtiers, townsfolk, men of mark in letters and art, and so crowded that the marshals of France had to sit on the floor. The best musical composers often performed portions of their work in her salon before public representation, and poets recited their verses at her little suppers. To the close of her long life, her home still possessed attractions to all classes of persons. Hers is among the statues of celebrated women to be set up in the new Hotel de Ville. (more…)

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Appeal on Behalf of the Amistad Africans

National Anti-Slavery Standard was established in 1840 by the husband and wife team of Lydia and David Child, who both were affirmed abolitionists as well as recognized successful writers (Lydia Child was the author of the poem “over the river and through the woods”). Using the motto “Without Concealment–Without Compromise” the Standard sought to extend the rights of slaves across the country.

Items like the one below focused on major events and topics amount the abolitionist community appeared regularly.   This plea for help for the Amistad  Africans appeared in the National Anti-Slavery Standard on October 7, 1841.

Appeal on Behalf of the La Amistad Africans

National Anti-Slavery StandardThe appeals heretofore made for funds for the defence, support and education of these Mendi Africans, have been successful, and the money, so generously contributed, has been economically expended, and with the happiest results. The sums contributed and the expenditures made have been published in the American and Foreign Anti-Slavery Reporter and the New-York Journal of Commerce, for the information of the donors and all persons interested. The time has now arrived when another appeal has become necessary. Such facts have recently come to the knowledge of the Committee, respecting the native country of these Mendians, and the feasibility of their reaching their kindred and homes, if they can be sent to Sierra Leone, that it had been determined to send the whole body of them (now reduced to 35 in number) back to Africa the present autumn. They will leave in a vessel for Sierra Leone as soon as the necessary funds shall be contributed. The Committee have in view two ministers of the gospel, one white and one colored, to accompany them to Mendi, and take up their abode with them as religious teachers, so long as the providence of God shall direct; and they are desirous of engaging one or two more, to be associated with these brethren as missionaries to Mendi.

Contributions are earnestly requested. Remittances may be made by mail, or otherwise, directed to Lewis Tappan, No. 7, Dorr’s Building, corner of Hanover and Exchange streets, rear of Merchants’ Exchange. Donors, if they choose, can specify whether their donations shall go towards defraying the expenses of the passage to Sierra Leone, &c., or for the support of the religious teachers. If not otherwise directed, the Committee will appropriate the money according to their discretion.— All donations will be acknowledged, and a paper, containing the acknowledgment, sent to each donor. The expenditures will also be published, as heretofore. (more…)

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The Bird - 2007

Trussing Poultry for Roasting

These instructions appeared in Godey’s Lady’s Book in January of 1859.

Trussing for roasting is managed in a different way from that for boiling, described herein. The following list of the methods adopted for roasting include the various kinds of poultry and game. It should be carefully remarked, that all skewers and strings should be removed after roasting, except the fine thread used in sewing up the belly of a hare or rabbit.

Godey’s Lady’s Book— Louis Antoine Godey began publishing Godey’s Lady’s Book in 1830. He designed his monthly magazine specifically to attract the growing audience of literate American women. The magazine was intended to entertain, inform, and educate the women of America.

Trussing a Bird(a) TURKEYS , FOWLS, AND PIGEONS are trussed alike, with very slight variations. The legs are first broken half-way between the feet and the next joint, then fixing the feet in a door-joint, or a table-drawer, or in a screw-press, the sinews are torn out. Next, place a doubled-up cloth on the breast, and press or beat the bone till it gives way. After this, the wings have a slit cut in their thin expansion of skin, and through this the gizzard and liver are passed, one on each side; next to which the pinions are turned over the back, and a wooden skewer is passed through the flesh of each wing close to the bone, transfixing the body, and also each thigh. The head is cut off close to the body, first drawing the skin well back, so as to leave a long covering for the end. This piece of skin is then passed under the ends of the pinions, or, if in a stuffed turkey , it is tied with a piece of coarse string, which is removed after roasting. In stuffing, be careful not to fill the skin too full, or it will burst in roasting.

Trussing a BirdAll is now described but the legs, which should have been pushed up under the skin of the breast, and secured there by the skewer transfixing them and the wings through the body, and passing through them close to the joints. The horny skin is scaled and peeled, after which a piece of string, or a small skewer, at the small end of the legs, completes the operation. If the skewer is used, it transfixes the side-bone. (See Figs. 1, 2, and 3.)

Trussing a Bird(b) GEESE AND DUCKS have their heads cut off in the same way as described at (a); but the legs are cut off at the first joint above the feet, and the wings are also removed at the first joint.

Sometimes, however, the legs of ducks are left on as in fowls. Next, introduce the stuffing and tie the skin, as described at (a).

After this, the wings are transfixed by a skewer through the body, and the legs the same, keeping them down by the side of the side-bones. The giblets, including the pinions, legs, liver, heart, gizzard, head, and neck, are separately cooked. (See Figs. 4 and 5.)

Trussing a Bird

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