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Robert E. Lee - Fashion Plate

Robert E. Lee, age 38, poses with his son, William Henry Fitzhugh Lee, 8, around the year 1845. At the time, Lee was twenty years into his military career having entered West Point in 1825, graduated second in his class, and earned a place in the Corps of Engineers. Historian Emory M. Thomas has suggested that “Lee is quite the fashion plate” in this image.

  • "His long, large sideburns, striped trousers, counter–striped vest, and hand–in–coat pose all seem a bit more pretentious than Lee usually was.” Thomas’s desire to judge Lee’s dress in the context of his character fits into a long tradition that includes Lost Cause biographers who saw his crisp Civil War–era attire as a reflection of “his modest humility, simplicity, and gentleness.”

Lee’s son, for a time nicknamed Rooney, ended the Civil War as second in command of the Confederate cavalry. He later served in the Senate of Virginia (1875–1878) and the United States House of Representatives (1887–1891).

Source: Encyclopedia Virgina

From The Civil War Parlor on Tumblr