Robert E. Lee
General of the Confederate Army
Do your duty in all things.
You cannot do more;
you should never wish to do less.
- Name Robert E. Lee
- Birth 19 January 1807
Stratford Hall, Virginia, U.S.
- Death: 12 October 1870
Lexington, Virginia, U.S.
Robert Edward Lee led the Army of Northern Virginia during the American Civil War. Lee had served 32 years in the Union Army before leaving to lead Confederate troops in his home state of Virginia. An excellent battlefield engineer and strategist, Lee held a defensive front against the Union Army for most of the war. Lee had several major victories, including the Battle of Bull Run; however, after multiple failed offensive strategies and defeat at Gettysburg, the tide of the war shifted.
Ultimately, Lee's troops were driven westward and surrounded by more numerous forces led by Ulysses S. Grant. Lee surrendered to Grant at Appomattox on April 9, 1865.
After the war, Lee advocated for reconciliation, reconstruction, and the reintegration of former confederates. He served as president of what is now known as Washington and Lee University before his death in 1870.