Robert E. Lee Essay

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Robert E. Lee Throughout history, there have been people whose names and faces have become synonymous with the time periods in which they lived. For example, Julius Caesar is synonymous with the late Roman Republic and George Washington is synonymous with the American Revolution. Just like these two men, the name Robert E. Lee has become synonymous with the American Civil War. Not only did Lee rise to become the most important and recognizable person in the Southern Confederacy, but his honor and virtuous acts during and after the war made him a hero to modern-day Americans. Even though he fought for what many consider the morally erroneous side of the war, the virtues of his character have made him a figure in American history…show more content…
Despite the mistakes his father and brother made, Lee managed to grow learning the ways of a true Southern gentleman. The departure of his father and two older half-brothers made Lee the man of the house at an early age. His mother, Ann Carter, raised Lee in modest circumstances and helped him to learn standard of conduct. Lee grew up in modest conditions, and though he received the normal education for someone of his class, he had to earn his own living and didn’t live the easy-going plantation life that most members of his family did. Since his mother did not have sufficient cash to send Lee to go to college, he chose instead to enter West Point military and academy. He entered in 1825 at the age of 18. At West Point Lee excelled tremendously. He finished second in his class and didn’t receive one demerit during his four years there (A feat that has yet to be repeated since then). Lee entered Engineer Corps after graduation where he was employed to build and maintain military installations and assist the Federal Government in the enormous work of providing internal improvements in order to settle border disputes on the frontier lands. Lee married Mary Custis in July of 1831. Mary Custis was the daughter of Mary Fitzhugh Custis and George Washington Custis, who was the adopted son of George Washington. Lee became the heir to Washington although the marriage did not bring Lee any financial benefits until Mary’s father died in 1857. Until then, he

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