The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 39, July 1935 - April, 1936

Colonel Lee's Report on Indian Combats in Texas

"General Lee was one of the greatest of our modern soldiers,
probably the most eminent American strategist and our best
loved military leader."
General Robert E. Lee was in command of the Department
of Texas from February 20 to November 27, 1860. He spent an
important part of his career in Texas, as it was there that he
had his only field training in command of troops, before the
Civil War.
Robert E. Lee was born in Westmoreland County, Virginia,
January 19, 1807. He was the son of "Light Horse Harry" Lee,
the celebrated cavalry leader of our War of Independence and
the Governor of Virginia in 1791. Two of his great-uncles signed
the Declaration of Independence, and he was a member of one
of the most distinguished American families.
He graduated at the U. S. Military Academy July 1, 1829,
number two in his class, and was assigned to the Corps of En-
gineers, and promoted to the grade of Second Lieutenant the
same date. He became a First Lieutenant September 21, 1836,
and a Captain July 7, 1838.
In September, 1846, he joined Brigadier General John E. Wool
at San Antonio, Texas, as his chief engineer.
On October 11, 1846, he crossed the Rio Grande into Mexico
with General Wool's army, where he distinguished himself and
was brevetted three times in appreciation of his valuable service.
Ten years later he was again back in Texas en route to join
his regiment as Lieutenant Colonel of the 2nd U. S. Cavalry.
He was one of the officers picked at large from army and civil
life, to officer the new cavalry regiments, by Jefferson Davis,
Secretary of War. Most of the officers were given increased rank,
and it was considered a great honor to be selected for these
Jefferson Davis' enemies claimed he formed the regiments to

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 39, July 1935 - April, 1936. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. Accessed May 29, 2016.

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