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Lee, Robert Edward  

(Jan. 19, 1807-Oct. 12, 1870). Considered the premier Confederate general in the Civil War, Lee was an active Episcopal layman. Throughout the conflict he was noted not only for his skill as a soldier, but also for the piety he fostered among troops in his army. He was born at Stratford, his family's plantation on the Potomac river in Virginia. After graduating from the Military Academy at West Point in 1829, he began a distinguished military career that included service in the Mexican War (1846-1848) and a term as Superintendent at West Point from 1852 to 1856. Following the outbreak of war in Apr. 1861, Lee resigned from the United States Army and joined the military forces of Virginia. In June 1862 he received command of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia, a position he held until the Civil War ended in 1865. Lee assumed the presidency of Washington College (later Washington and Lee University) in Lexington, Virginia, in Aug. 1865. He also served on the vestry of Grace Church, Lexington. By the end of the nineteenth century many southerners portrayed Lee as an exemplar of the moral and religious ideals of their society. 

Glossary definitions provided courtesy of Church Publishing Incorporated, New York, NY,(All Rights reserved) from "An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church, A User Friendly Reference for Episcopalians," Don S. Armentrout and Robert Boak Slocum, editors.
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