CDV vignette bust portrait of William Henry Fitzhugh Lee (1837-1891) in uniform with rank stars visible on his collar. Vannerson & Jones: Richmond, VA, n.d., ca 1864. Two-cent revenue stamp on verso. Signed by Lee on recto in black ink.
Lee, known most commonly as Rooney (Roony) or by his initials, followed in the footsteps of his father, Robert E. Lee. He served in the U.S. Army as a 2nd lieutenant in the 6th U.S. Infantry and fought in the Utah War against the Mormons before resigning in 1859 to take up farming in Virginia.
At the outbreak of the Civil War, he joined the Confederate Army cavalry as a captain. He was soon promoted to major and played a leading role in the attack on Catlett's Station on August 22, 1862. He served in the Maryland Campaign and was WIA at the Battle of Stone Mountain (causing him to miss Antietam), recovering to command a cavalry brigade in the Chambersburg Raid, earning him a promotion to Brigadier General. He further fought in the Battles of Fredericksburg and the Battle of Chancellorsville. At the beginning of Gettysburg, he was wounded at Brandy Station and taken as a prisoner of war. He was exchanged on February 25, 1864 for Union Brig. Gen. Neal S. Dow.
In April, he was promoted to major general and commanded a division of the cavalry and continued his extensive participation fighting in several battles, becoming the second-in-command in the Confederate cavalry in Virginia. He helped to screen the Confederate evacuation of Petersburg before he surrendered alongside his father at Appomattox. After the war, he returned to farming and would later become involved in politics. From 1875-1878 he served in the Virginia Senate and was then elected to the Federal House of Representatives in 1887 as a Democrat, serving until his death.
Very occasional spotting, some toning.
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