Saturday, March 30, 2013

Why Lee's slave ledgers may (eventually) change everything we claim about "Confederate honor".

under construction......


One of Lee's light skinned slave girls.

Lee owned over 100 mulatto slaves, far more than average.



The Lee family with Elizabeth Pryor,  in blue dress. Pryor is only person to get extended access to Lee's personal papers, including his slave ledgers. 



If Ms Pryor could say just one thing to Lee, it might be this:
"Please, General Lee, if you are going to whip slave girls, pay bounties for women and children caught in the North, and send dirty letters, please please don't write it down.."

But Lee did -- Lee wrote it down.  And his family saved those papers.   Pryor was allowed to study the ledgers, the dirty letters.

Don't worry - you can read Pryor's book, and hardly notice the rapes, tortures, and horrors.   Pryor does not rub your nose in his torture of slave girls, the bounty payments for girls, and his purchase of FREE women and children, that his bounty hunters kidnapped in the North.

Pryor's book is as flattering as she can make it -- she starts with a self serving letter from Lee, and her overall narrative and tone could be written by Lee himself, or perhaps his wife.

But those details -- details Pryor injects with the care of a brain surgeon inserting a stent in your cerebral cortex.

Very -- very -- carefully.


The family had these papers for 150 years, and only recently let one person study them, Elizabeth Pryor. Pryor wrote a flattering book-- "Reading The Man:  A Portrait of Robert E Lee Though His Personal Papers"


Did you know -- according to Pryor (read it closely) Lee not only had slave girls whipped, he screamed at one slave girl AS he had her tortured.

How does she know?   Because Lee verified the other basic facts in newspaper accounts of that torture -- a torture session Lee was energetic about, and it was NOT an isolated incident.

Scholars knew about the two trunks of papers for 80 years, and just assumed they would prove, once again, what a kind man, a man against slavery, a man of honor, he was.

Uh - not so much. 

Pryor held, in her own hands,  at length, Lee's hand written records about buying slave girls from bounty hunters.  And he bought girls who were not slaves,  information Pryor unearthed from slave ledgers and personal letters.

Make no mistake -- she is out to defend Lee, excuse, and minimize the horrors she finds.   She saves the word "horror" for the regular rapes of slave girls, and the "white looking" slave children, born from those rapes.


Pryor won't even call the slave ledgers by that name -- slave ledgers.  She refers to them only once, by the Orwellian "monthly account books" -- but these account books (slave ledgers) were so highly detailed, Pryor could pinpoint payments to certain bounty hunters, on certain days, for which girl.

Why not be candid? Why not just show the slave ledgers, show the dirty letters?   That's a question for Pryor -- but remember, she worked for, and with, and under the stare of, the Lee family.  Would you be more blunt if you worked with them, on this book?


Pryor cleverly subtitles her book "A Portrait of Robert E Lee Through His Personal Papers".   Pryor, as much a wordsmith as any,chose "Portrait"  carefully.  She knows a portrait is a flattering view, where the "blemishes" are smoothed over.

Yet, over all, read closely, Pryor does what no one else dared. 

She could tell us, even, how many light skinned girls Lee owned, and how many light skinned slave girls tried to escape at one time.  She peppers her narrative with facts like Lee's "prefered" method of discipline was the whip. She buries such stunning statements (which imply he had a range of tortures --which he did) in such banal and unremarkable prose, you don't "get the picture".

Pryor did the best she could, apparently.   She worked with, and with the approval of, the Lee family.  There was a practical limit to how much blunt truth she could get by them, and into her book.

Pryor  reveals the tortures, rapes, bounties, cowardice, etc etc --but carefully, artfully, sometimes in Orwellian doublespeak.


 You only know what you are told -- and no one told you this.  Lee wrote it down -- and Pryor, though she does her best to put it in Orwellian terms, to minimize, excuse, or blame the slaves, gets the information in.

Whipping slave girls for trying to escape?  Yes.

But that's only the begining. Slavery was a vile enterprise, based on fear -- and Lee knew that.  No matter how you dress it up, how much you claim God ordained it, slavery was a violent and brutal activity.   Rape was common, according to Pryor, even at Arlington.

Torture was common too -- especially when slaves tried to escape.

Lee was not a moderate on torture -- in fact, Pryor admits that Lee was worse -- worse -- than the other slave owners.

How would she get that information?  From a duck? From a rumor?

No, she got it from his papers, and his slave ledgers.   His notes to, and from, bounty hunters.

Of all the Orwellian double speak,  Pryor does her best to admit -- while not admitting -- Lee bought women and children from bounty hunters who were free blacks, living in the North.

That's right, Lee purchased not only escaped slave girls -- he bought women and children his bounty hunters caught in the NORTH, kidnapped, while trying to find actual escaped slaves.

How do we know? Lee wrote it down.   It's in Lee's papers.

Pryor won't show the papers -- too obvious. But she does admit Lee paid for "others" who his bounty hunters caught in the North.

Who could "others" be?   They were not his escaped slaves, they were "others".  Other than escaped slaves.  

Lee bought the "others".   And Pryor could have, should have, given us the names, prices, and eventual disposition of those souls -- what did Lee do with those woman and children?  He didn't free them.  He did something with them.

Pryor knows what, because Lee's slaves ledgers are extensive and detailed, as you will see.  So what did Lee do with these "others"?   WHo did he sell them to, or rent them out to, or send to which auction house?

We already knew about Lee having his soldiers capture free blacks in the North -- during the war- - and turn them into slaves.

But Pryor found out, Lee had done this during peace time too.

Did Lee immediately apologize and free the people his hunters kidnaped?  Hell no -- he made them slaves.

See how careful Pryor was, to get that information in.   


Pryor could, and did, compare Lee's slave ledgers, to his personal letters, to and from.   For example, she could check letters by Lee to his bounty hunters, then check for expenditures in his slave ledgers.  Or letters to Lee complaining about white looking slave girls, or asking about white looking slave babies. 

Lee recorded payments for people his bounty hunters caught -- as you will see, some were not escaped slaves, but "others" -- meaning free blacks -- the hunters caught in the North.   See details below.

Still, Pryor schizophrenically  defends Lee,  yet exposes Lee in clever Orwellian double speak, every step of the way.  

She has the gonads to reveal the rapes at Arlington, which she admits, cleverly, were "common".   And equally as carefully, she   admits rapes were sometimes violent -- and routine.    

Now - how would she know that?  She didn't talk to Lee's --she got it from HIS OWN PAPERS.

Remember that.   Someone wrote to Lee - or he answered a letter -- about it.  Pryor mentions a stunning 10,000 letters -- and that's in addition to his slave ledgers. 

Pryor needed to be artful -- she worked with the blessing of, and cooperation with, the Lee family and Virginia Historical Society, which exists, essentially, to honor Robert  E Lee.

Make no mistake -- Pryor's goal is to keep Lee's halo upon his head. She does not trash Lee, though she could. And should.  Or at least, be candid about what she found. 

Pryor  reveals the tortures, rapes, bounties, cowardice, etc etc --but carefully, artfully, sometimes in Orwellian doublespeak.


Historians have long known -- since 1860 -- that  three newspapers -- before the Civil War reported on Lee's torture (torture is the right word)  of slave girls.  No one told you that, did they?

Now Pryor knows much more about those tortures -- not only did Lee verify them (see below) so did others, including witnesses interviewed AFTER the Civil War.


It gets unbelievable, at times, when you read Pryor's book very closely.  Whipping girls so young, his regular overseer -- the guy that made a living whipping slaves -- refused to whip one girl, but Lee then paid to have her whipped.

That was the story in the newspapers -- no story needed about regular whippings. The entire reason this story "hit the paper" was the youth and tiny boy of the slave girl Lee had whipped anyway.

Pryor reveals that only passingly, as if it's not a big deal.  It was a big deal, because THATS why it made the paper.

 Lee had a slave girl whipped that was so young, his regular overseer refused to whip her.  

You heard right -- so young, so little, Lee's overseer refused to whip her because of her young age -- and this overseer was used to whipping slaves. Lee was incensed, apparently, and hired a bounty hunter, in the audience watching the torture, to whip the girl.

And guess who verified payments to the exact man named in the newspaper?  Lee wrote that name down, with payment, and payment to others, same name, same dates, same cities.  Lee wrote enough details that Pryor had no choice BUT to admit the reports of Lee's torture of the slave 
girl was "unquestionably" based on facts found in Lee's papers.

The newspapers reported Lee screamed at the girl all through her torture. No, Lee didn't verify that he screamed at the girl throughout her torture, but strange indeed if the eye witnesses had that wrong, but everything else matched up with Lee's details in his own handwriting.

 Gee, maybe there is a reason "historians" knew this, but "forgot" to mention it.



True -- newspaper reports, even three, even if they report basically the same thing, at the time time, does NOT mean those newspapers were necessarily accurate, true.  But Lee confirmed the basic story himself, in his own slave ledgers. 

Pryor found -- to her astonishment no doubt -- Lee himself verified many of the facts from those newspapers on those dates.    


But there is more confirmation -- and much more torture.

After the Civil War, reporters found a former Lee slave, at Arlington Cemetery.   He was a paid grave digger, digging graves for deceased soldiers bodies, being brought there.

The ex slave confirmed yet again the reports about slave torture at Arlington, and said some of the same names as Pryor found in Lee's own handwriting, in Lee's own slave ledgers.

For the ex slave to be lying, he would have had to somehow find Lee's slave ledgers, read them, memorize some of the details, then wait to be interviews after the war.  Seem likely to you?

Remember, Lee himself wrote payments and names that line up on the dates the newspapers reported on.

While Pryor could have, and should have,  made that the first page, maybe named her book "Lee's tortures"  or "Lee' Payments".

She told us, as cleverly as she could -  but she could have just left that out entirely. Give her credit, as clever and as Orwellian as she was, she got the information in.



But her clear objective here was NOT to trash Lee, but to defend him, as much as she could.   

And that's just the tip of the iceberg. 

Turns out, "historians" hid a lot more than his big bald head.


And Lee did pretty much like his father did, re slaves.  Pryor did the same thing other Lee biographers did -- praise his family first.   She "forgot" to mention Lee's father had a slave girl hung.   That's right, Lee grew up that way.  Lee's father  had a slave girl hung - -- for knocking down a white man.

It was so unimportant at the time, no one, literally NO ONE, even bothered to record why she knocked down a white man.  She did, and she was hung for it. And Lee's father ordered the execution.

Maybe she knocked that white man down because he caught her escaping -- or stealing. Maybe he was raping her, her mother, her child.

As you will see, anyone black who fought back against rape was punished.   So that could be what happened.  We  have no idea.   But she died, she was young, and Lee's father watched her hang.   He ordered she be hung.


Make no mistake -- Pryor adores Lee.

NO, she wont let us SEE the slave ledgers, in fact, she calls them "monthly account books"  rather than the candid, and true, "slave ledgers'.

Even though she mentions  she also gives him an excuse.   The girls "tested Lee".  Poor Bobby!!  They tested him!   So he had them tortured -- and torture is the right word, if you don't like it, tuff.  Enough bullshit about what slave owners did to slave girls, enough bullshit, enough Orwellian double speak. 

Pryor, however, uses Orwellian double speak on every page-- but give her credit --she gets facts in, Orwellian double speak, excuses, or no. 


Lee whipped those girls -- or had them whipped -  Pryor tells us, because of his "poor cross cultural communication skills".   Really.

Just a failure to communicate!  Orwell much?

 Pryor maybe too young to have seen the famous movie Cool Hand Luke, where the torturing warden, who seemed to love whipping men, claimed "What we have here, is a failure to communicate".

But put yourself in Pryor's shoes -- working, literally -- with the Lee family, and with the Virginia Historical Society.   It would be unthinkable for her to trash Lee, truthfully, bluntly. Would YOU did that, if you worked with the Lee family?

No you would not.  Either would I.

 Pryor has a second line of defense for his torture -- on top of poor communication.  It's clear (to me, IMHO) that Pryor's biggest problem writing this book, was HOW to tell us what she found.

Pryor claimed -- falsely -- Lee had to have the slaves whipped, by law. Nonsense, and she knows that.  There were no laws that said slaves HAD to be whipped, and if she can find one, she knows that Lee disobeyed all the laws he wanted, re slavery, including laws against kidnapping free woman and children and turning them into slaves.

Yes -- Lee had black women and children turned INTO slaves, that were not slaves before.  He did so illegally. 

Lee had to do whip them -- by law?

Furthermore, Lee regularly broke the laws about slave girls, see below.  

Third layer of Orwellian buffer

Pryor's Orwellian double speak is smooth -- but she needed three layers for this torture stuff , 

The third layer  of Orwellian defense -- the girls "tested"  Lee.   What else could he do?  Poor Booby.  He didn't want to --  but they TESTED him.

Remember --all these horrors Pryors finds, she gets from Lee's own papers. Pryor's kicks in her own excuses -- her own narrative of "the slaves tested Lee".

Turns out, the "testing" was that the slave girl escaped.  Gee -- Pryor doesn't make that clear.   A girl escapes, Lee pays bounty hunters to look for her for months, then has her tortured upon her return, and screams at her all through her torture, according to witnesses.

That's how the girl (one of many) tested Lee -- she tried to escape.   Pryor was not about to tell you Lee tortured her for escaping, nothing that blunt. You have to flip back and forth between her clever double talk, and put it together.   

What are the "details" she leaves out -- she leaves ALL details out.  She could easily show us or tell us specifically what in his slave ledgers and papers show it's, as she said, unquestionably true that Lee  had these slaves whipped. And he used the whip -- often.  This was not a one time torture secession.  Later, Pryor artfully adds, as if it's a small detail in a recipe, that Lee's " preference" for discipline was the whip.

So he had other tortures -- not just the whip.  Remember that.  Cute way to tell us.

No we don't know exactly what other tortures Lee had -- she only mentions the whip, and the salt torture (witnesses themselves said the salt was for torture - we defer to them).    What did Pryor see in those slave ledgers to say whipping was his preference?  Hard telling, impossible to tell, in fact, which is almost certainly the reason she kept it very vague.

Pryor's main goal, it seems, is to NOT reveal anything in a graphic clear way, which she could easily do, if she wanted. 

And Pryor does more -- when telling us about the whipping post Lee had installed, she immediately claims it stood as "silent testimony" to slaves.  Hell no it wasn't silent, it was the scene of torture ya bitch.   Girls were tied to it and tortured, and not just once in a while.  Lee stood close by and screamed as those girls where whipped.

Silent? Shame on Pryor for using linguistic trick after linguistic trick to mislead people. But give her credit for what she does reveal, artfully. 


If the "Lee Myth" were true --that he was against slavery -- he could just let them escape.   Lee actually spent a lot of time, money, and energy to have those slave girls captured.  HE gave much higher bounties for the girls, than the male sales, when they escaped.

 Why send bounty hunters all over three states, pay them handsomely,  direct them personally, as he did, if he was against slavery? Then have the slaves whipped, as he screamed at them, if they were caught?



Yes, Lee owned and managed over 200 slaves, and according to the 1860 census, according to Pryor, over half of his slaves were mulatto, a preposterously high percentage. 

Some, Pryor tells us "looked white".

 Here is a clue, looking white means white.   And Pryor was deeply offended, it seems, when she found out Lee produced WHITE looking slaves, and paid bounty for white looking women.  She didnt seem offended whatsoever about torture, bounty, and taking children from dark skinned women.

Pryor writes  "Whites were increasingly enslaving other whites".

Were did these light skinned slaves come from? The sky?


Pryor uses every trick in the book -- when telling us about "White looking" slaves, she does not even mention the name Lee on that page.

SHe does not say, for example "Lee wrote to his daughter about the white looking slave girl -- and here is what he wrote".

Indeed, on that page, she seems to give the impression this is about slave owners generally.  She does that impression trick by simply not putting the name Lee in the sentences.  So nothing on that page jumps out at you.  

But read her passages closely -- she is talking about LEE's slaves, and his white looking slave girls. The letters she mentions are from women at Arlington.  These white looking slave girls are not girls from down the road -- they are white looking girls AT ARLINGTON that are SLAVES.

Pryor could -- and should -- tell us the names of the white looking slave girls -- because she would know that.  She chose not to.

She could -- and should -- tell us the names and content of the letters to or from Lee, about those girls.  What did they say?  Who were they about?  

 Did one of Lee's daughters complain to her father?  Did his wife complain about the rapes?  Did someone write to Lee about the rapes? We know rapes were common at Arlingtong -- because Pryor tells us that!  But she tells is in the most clever way, not to startle. 

What are the details?

We don't know. Pryor isn't telling, at least in the text.  

But SOMEONE at Arlington wrote to Lee and mentioned it, or he wrote and mentioned it.   Pryor got that information about white looking slave girls from somewhere --  remember, Pryor is trying so hard to gloss over and minimize the horrors.  

It's reasonable to assume Pryor would put in her book -- never mind how clever and Orwellian her language -- that which was abundantly clear in the papers.    She is trying to absolve Lee of real blame, and put the horrors in the most careful language she can muster.

So Pryor isn't making it up -- she is trying her best to clean it up before she tells anyone.

Do not expect any candid sentence on the tortures, rapes, and young girls.  There is not a candid sentence in the book.   But how could she?

How could Pryor work literally with the Lee family, under the eye of Virginia "Historical" Society, be candid about their hero?

Pryor gets the information in - but not candidly.  She was so good at making things vague, that you can read her book and hardly notice the tortures, rapes, and bounty hunters were regular things at Arlington, once Lee got control.  

The Lee family had these papers for 150 years, and only recently let one person study them, Elizabeth Pryor. Pryor wrote a flattering book-- as flattering as she could make it -- but she did carefully mention facts no dared whisper before.



Pryor does use the word "RAPE"  but she first tries to sell black white sexual relations as "dalliances" - - really. 

Only later does she write  "coercion was used in those situations"

When Pryor dips into passive tense, without names, without candid terms, she is not informing you, she is trying to gloss over something.

Coercion? You mean the whip? You mean threats? We don't know what she  means exactly, but remember, she SAW something in his papers that reveal the coercion. She saw letter to or from Lee, a report, and complaint, a question by one of his daughters, perhaps, a plea from a victim, whatever.

She saw something that made her say -- deep in the book "coercion was used".  Why not say "Lee's daughter wrote to him the following letter, relaying the details of a rape by two white men on one of Lee's slaves"?  Or whatever it might be.

We get NOTHING. Nada. Zero.  We get the "coercion was used" but she writes that in a way you see nothing in your head.   If she had written, "according to the sheriff, two men held the girls down..."  whatever . The point is -- Pryor did see enough evidence in Lee's own papers, that she said rape was common, and force "was used".  

Those situations?  You mean rape? You mean forced what?

Keep in mind, Pryor had to see -- on paper - something that made her write "coercion was used".  So what did she see, what did she hold in her hands, that gave her the information?

She does not tell you that. She just gives you the "coercion was used in those situations".

Notice the passive voice? No name -- who used "coersion"?  Who raped who Ms Pryor -- you know, tell us.

What coercion? Whips?  Several white men holding a girl down?  What did you see in the papers that made you tell us that?

WHen Pryor does mention rape, she uses ebonics.  She quotes a slave man, apparently old by then, and disrespectfully quotes him as saying "Lord chid, dats wuz common".

No where else does Pryor quote like that.  Think that's accidental? WHy not use ebonics on something like Lee giving slaves his old boots.  No, she won't do that. 



  Infact, slave men had to sleep in a different shack, because if they tried to stop the rapes, they were beaten, whipped, etc. Did you know that?

Pryor tells of one of the slaves, who explained why the men slept elsewhere, not with their "wives".   The white men would come at night, to rape who they wanted, and if black men jumped up to fight back, they could be killed -- did you know that?  A black man who laid a hand on a white person in anger could be whipped - if the black man injured the white man, the black man could be hung or burned to death.

Are you getting the picture yet?   Pryor is very careful not to paint the picture with vivid strokes, but quite the opposite.

Imagine that -- your "wife" has to sleep in a different building, so the white man can come over and rape her at night.  

Where did that happen?  At Arlington.  What happened as a result of those rapes?  Light skinned children were born.

Who owned those light skinned children?   Robert E Lee.

Now  you know what Pyor hid, but she did say there were "horrors".  She did not want to make those horrors too vivid.

He had letters from bounty hunters, and he wrote to them, because Pryor carefully gets that information in, again, in a way intended to misinform, rather than inform.  But she gets it in.

She can tell who Lee paid, and how much, for which slaves. Do you think she got that information from, a duck? No she got it from his papers, she has his papers in her hands, this book is about HIS PAPERS.

Remember that when you read her smooooooth prose. 

Pryor's narrative in "Reading the Man" about Lee's papers is extremely flattering overall. She opens the book with a long self serving letter from Lee. As you will see, Lee was a wordsmith, he had a way of claiming religious motives for anything, including slavery and torture -- yes, torture.

She COULD have opened the book with a list of prices he paid for slave girls.  She COULD have opened it with his  list of bounty payments for light skinned girl. She COULD have opened it with a list of payments for bounties for FREE people his hunters found in the North while they searched for escaped slaves.


 Lee wrote sexually explicit letters for decades -- not to his wife -- but to various women.  Pryor hardly mentions them -- and carefully selects the tid bit she does share.  Lee wrote about sex tricks he used  -- when writing a woman not his wife.  He wrote about his son's sexual abilities.

How many times have your written letters bragging about your son's sexual abilities?   We don't know the context, -- Pryor aint telling -- and why isn't she telling?  Why mention these letters at all, if she isn't going to make it clear what was going on.

How many sexually explicit letters have you written to women that you didn't have some sexual interaction with?

And remember, this was 1840-1870.  People did not write sexually explicit letters then, certainly not to various women, and not for decades.

But Lee did.   Even after the Civil War, Lee wrote sexually explicit letters. Yeah, that guy.  But writing dirty letters is one thing.

Having slave girls whipped -- while you scream at them -- an another matter entirely.



Lee had  his soldiers capture free people living in North DURING the war,  taken South and sold as slaves. That's well known, and not even disputed. 

But in Lee's papers -- Pryor learned that Lee already did the same thing, before the war, as a private citizen.   Lee bought free people living in the North, BEFORE the CIvil War, from his bounty hunters. His hunters didn't didn't care if they were escape slaves or not -- Lee didn't care either. He bought them.  Yes, your lovely Robert E Lee turned free people into slaves, before and during the Civil War.  


Pryor  COULD have opened it with newspaper accounts -- at least three of them -- confirmed by his own words in his own slave ledgers, of the torture of a slave girl so small, so young, the Overseer refused to whip her. Lee had  her whipped anyway, and screamed at her all through her torture.

But she opens every chapter with something sweet about Lee, like he gave his old clothes to the slaves. Uh, he sold slave children, he had them whipped, he bought children from bounty hunters.  She tells you that -- but never in the first part of a chapter, and never candidly.  Never in a way that makes  you see Lee choosing which slave girl to sell, or see Lee handing the money over to bounty hunters for children - FREE CHILDREN -- that his bounty hunters caught in the North.

Pryor is a superb writer -- when she wants to you to know something, she makes it vivid, visual, unmistakable.  But when she wants to gloss over some  horror, she can write things like "Lee failed to fill out the time consuming paperwork."

The "paperwork" she alluded to, never existed, because it's paperwork about paying bounty hunters for FREE women and children Lee's hunter caught in the North. There was no paperwork for that, and shame on Pryor for misdirecting that way.

Pryor COULD have opened with a list of prices paid for women and children Lee's hunters found living free in the NORTH -- yes Lee bought women and children, not escaped slaves at all -- the were in the North. Pyror artfully says "Technically, Lee may have broken the law"  and that Lee "failed to fill out the time consuming paperwork"

So even when Pryor admits a horror -- she instantly entombs it in double talk nonsense.  But she does admit the horrors.

Pryor only seems offended, in the slightest, when she finds out about WHITE LOOKING slave girls, as if beating, raping, selling black looking girls was fine, but it's sure HORRIBLE to do that to whites!


Pryor  opened with a self serving letter Lee wrote -- like all Southern leaders, Lee was adroit with language, and self flattering prose. Think that was by accident? Or do you think she and the Lee family thought Lee's own artful words -- as opposed to his cruel tortures -- would be a nicer opening.

(yes, torture is the right word, Lee had girls tortured, and tortured cruelly as you will see)



Lee's slave ledgers confirm the tortures, the payments to the man whipping the girls,  -- and much more.  


Why did Lee have this girl (and many others) whipped?   They tried to escape.  


Why did the newspaper even bother writing a report on Lee whipping slaves?  Whipping slaves was legal,  but this torture was different, because Lee did it in front of many people.

Plus. the overseer, the man who usually whips slaves, refused to do so.
That's right, the overseer refused to whip one girl. Why did he refuse?   She was too young. SHE WAS TOO YOUNG.

Take a minute, think this over.  Lee had slave girls whipped that the regular overseeer-- a man who regularly tortured people for the master- - refused to whip.


Try to take that in.   It's disgusting anyway, to torture anyone, but here Lee had slave girls tortured THAT WERE TOO YOUNG according to the guy who whipped slaves for a living.

Now  you see why it made the paper.  

This really should not surprise us -- slavery was a violent enterprise -- men do violent things, when they have unlimited power.   

Slave owners could NOT tolerate slaves escaping or fighting back -- try to understand that.  What would happen if a slave owner allowed escapes? This is not rocket science.

What would happen if a slave owner allowed slaves to fight back, to knock a white man down. 

We have been fed bullshit by our silly movies and Southern apologists -- slavery was a sex based, violent based enterprise.  The fact that over half -- thats right over half -- of Lee's slaves were NOT dark skinned, should tell you somethin

And Pryor told you something -- deep in the book, after a bunch of Orwellian BS -- Pryor did tell us, rape was COMMON.   COMMON.  Remember, she did not get that from dreaming it up, she is trying to protect Lee.  But from the papers she held, she could tell, rape was COMMON.

Were all slave women raped?   Well, they could not resist, they could not fight back, they could be whipped, their children sold, their "husbands" whipped -- slave owners did NOT play nice.  Their religious bullshit was a cover.   Religious men don't torture, enslave and sell children.

But Lee did. 

Yeah, that Robert E Lee.  

And this was BEFORE the Civil War, reported in papers at the time

Virginia Historical Society

The Lee family -- and Virginia Historical Society -- vetted and chose Ms Pryor personally, to study, at length, two trunks of Lee's personal papers.

Why not just copy them and let everyone see?   You will figure that out, soon.

As Pryor shows, as the rapes of the lighter skinned girls continued, even lighter skinned children were born, as slaves.

As Pryor said "Whites were increasingly enslaving other whites 

Then they ("historians") just repeated each other, like an echo.  Too bad much of it was simply not true. 

Cooke claimed Lee and ALL HIS officers would dismount during battle, as bombs blew up around them, for a nice long silent prayer.

And honestly, people are so stupid, they believed it. 

Cooke's book is sold right now, today, this minute.  You can buy a copy easily.

 If that happened, if Lee and all his officers prayed during battle,  why didn't anyone say that for 20 years, till Cook came along? And why didn't anyone say it since?

That kind of nonsense is on every page, of nearly every Lee biography.

Nothing is too goofy to claim. 


He also used bounty hunters -- extensively. She could have easily written a book all about his payments for slaves, and the bounty hunters, but that was not her goal.


Two of the three men depicted on the largest bas relief sculpture on earth, had slaves whipped, and sold children. The other one didnt own slaves himself, but his family got rich from it.


  Pryor calls the slave ledgers "monthly account books" --  not slave ledgers.  Gee, I wonder why.



The Lee family still have the papers, yet it might take another 150 years for them to let anyone study them again.

WHere the Lee myth came from 



Remember, he had them tortured because they tried to escape. 



We all use linguistic "tricks" to give the impression we want. There are a thousand ways to say something, and Pryor always picks the way most calculated to smooth over Lee's vile actions, or excuse them.  

Minimize + gloss over + excuse, is essentially her approach to Lee "facts".

 As Pryor showed, Lee's biggest problem with slaves was the many escapes - but the Lee MYTH was that he had freed his slaves (false) or they refused to leave!  (Absurd).

Pryor does tell us Lee had  "epidemics" of escapes.  Hell -- HOW MANY escapes.  Remember, she had the information in her hand, the dates most likely, the names, most likely  She had that, or she could not have told us there were  epidemics of slave escapes.

She does mention once, he had 12 escaped slaves loose -- but did he have 50 at one time? 100?   There is a reason she is vague, and most likely, any time she is vague, she is vague to minimize the horrors, violence and cruelty 

she wont say how many, but escaped slaves encouraged others. And the escapes started immediately.

Men, when they oppress, rape, torture, steal, enslave, murder, etc, must, must rationalize it in their head.  


Mankind are not animals, we do not just kill without some kind of excuse. But then, animals do not kill without some kind of reason. Animals do not torture one another, sell one another, or need or make excuses to do so.

Slavery and rape of slaves, whipping slaves, sale of children (yes Lee sold children) takes a special kind of scum, sociopath OR someone who can rationalize and excuse.

Lee,like most slavers, rationalized by claiming God ordained it, they were doing the will of God. 

In fact, Lee and many other slavers insisted they were burdened, the slaves were fortunate, because they were learning about Jesus!   Better his slave than a Godless heathen in Africa, Lee wrote (paraphrasing)  Lee used that bullshit like others slavers. He was not at all unusual.

But Lee didn't give a shit about Jesus for his slaves, remember, he had women and c hildren kidnapped from the North who were never in Africa, and Lee probably never saw a slave that was from Africa.  But he would use that "heathen in Africa" nonsense, and stupid people even today buy that garbage.

Did Lee free them when they learned about Jesus? Are you kidding, they were raped, and beaten, as you will see, long after they learned about Jesus.

Did Lee check to see if the women and children he bought from hunters that kidnapped them from the North were bible believers?  HELL NO.   

Try to grasp this -- not just about Lee, but about mankind generally -- men do things because they want to, and it gives them power prestige and control or access to women.   Then, just like Lee did, they make up some lofty sounding bullshit to obscure the fact they just wanted power, prestige, and control of women.

Lee was no exception. 


While Pryor has thousands of Lee's letters, there is only ONE used by Lee devotees to claim he was against slavery.

Talk about bullshit - read the full letter. Yes, it starts out with Lee telling his wife slavery is a political and moral evil --  that's the part Southern crybabies have shown for 100 years.  (Of course they never showed, and still don't, his dirty letters and slave ledgers).

But read the REST of the letter!!   It's a smooth but cruel defense of slavery and the pain he used eagerly and often

Lee wrote that abolitionist were "against God"  and that slavery was "a religious liberty". 

Got that -- slavery was a RELIGIOUS LIBERTY.   And that man is evil to try to end slavery other than by prayer.

Get this -- Lee wrote "pain is necessary for their instruction" and they "must endure painful discipline" .  Lee's wife was a devout woman, she fell for religious BS, so that's what Lee used. That's how he took care of her -- tell her God wants the slaves whipped, tell her it's evil to do anything other than pray.

 He used the religious excuse on himself too, no doubt.  

But remember, Lee wrote dirty letters too - sexually suggestive letters about sexual activites, to various women, FOR DECADES. Pryor wont say how many (Pryor is never candid--remember that) but Pryor does say there were many, and he did it for DECADES.  

Try to grasp that.  Yeah, Lee used religion when it suited him, like to justify his purchase and torture (torture is the right word) of women, but Lee was NOT a religious man.  Faking religion may impress the stupid, but it's not a faithful man who tortures slave girls and sells children.   He bought women and children that his hunters found in the North -- if you think he did that to give them Jesus you are an idiot and get off this page.

So read the full letter -- and better yet, learn what Lee did. 


Lee's moral code -- according to his own letter -- including inflicting pain --pain was necessary for their instruction.   What would such a man NOT do?   

Seriously -- what was on Lee's  "DO NOT DO THIS LIST"

He had girls tortured. He bought women and children. He sold them.  He had bounty hunters bring him not only his own escaped slaves, but "others" who were not slaves at all, till he got hold of them.

You tell me -- a man that would do this, dressed up in his fine religious bullshit or not -- what would he NOT do?
Not much. 


    She sprinkles the horrors, rapes, bounties around, a little here, a little there, like MSG in a Chinese buffet,  never bluntly saying anything candid or straightforward.



Pryor not only avoids hitting you over the head with the horrors, she goes to extremes to mention them as casually and her amazing rhetorical skills can.    For example, when telling us about Lee's purchase of FREE women and children, who lived in the North, but Lee's bounty hunters illegally kidnapped (really) -- she puts it as a "paperwork" issue, saying "Lee failed to fill out the time consuming paperwork".  

You  cant be sure what she is talking about, she is a diplomat and adept at double talk --but smooth.  In the passages about Lee's purchase of free women and children, she is so vague, you have to re-read it several times.   She mentions "others" -- others his bounty hunters caught. Who could others be?

They had to be -- OTHER than Lee's escaped slaves.  That's who others are.  And she knew that, Pryor could tell you what Lee paid, to which hunter, and on what date.  


Pryor writes Lee "failed to fill out time consuming paper work". 

Yeah, like they HAD paperwork about kidnapping free people, women and children, and turning them into slaves.    Pryor ends that work of Orwellian art by saying "Technically, Lee may have broken the law".  Of all Pryor's artful dodges, that is the most clever - and sick.  Lee buys free women and children, if they try to escape he has them whipped -- and this is what she writes?


    But -- compare her to any other Lee "scholar" -- Pryor is a bastion of candor.  

 No one else ever dared admit these things, in fact, they had Lee as anti slavery, so  beloved by his "servants" that they refused to leave.  See what total bullshit that is--below.  So Pryor  is, compared to others, the current queen of candor.

She does admit, however, that Lee's slaves said Lee was "the worst man we ever knew" -- a far cry from the nonsense that Lee didn't own any, or  that slaves refused to leave him, when he supposedly gave them their freedom.

Lee is therefore the only military person in US history to have civilians captured during war -- and sold as slaves.   But he did not wait for the war to do this -- he paid bounty hunters to do it for him, before the war.  And he paid good money to have free people turned into slaves -- yeah, your Bobby Lee. Your " Greatest Christian"  your "America's Gentleman" was no gentleman.  

See why facts matter?   

And no, Lee did not free his slaves or his wife's slaves till well into the Civil War, and it took three -- count them three -- court ORDERS to Lee to free them

And Lee owned his OWN slaves, and bought some from bounty hunters, Pryor wont give us the numbers.

See how totally opposite Lee was from the  myth?  

It doesnt matter what your smug history teacher told you  -- he got his BS from text books that insist Lee didn't even own any slaves and freed the ones his wife had. No, he didn't do anything remotely like that.

How do we know? Lee wrote it down, that's how.


Wish Pryor would show us the letters from and to Lee's bounty hunters --yes, Pryor had them in her hands. We could learn a lot about Lee from a few sentences about those escaped slaves, or his reaction to his hunters finding "others' for his purchase.

Lee sent bounty hunters after escaped slaves-- FOR MONTHS. Sound like a man against slavery? Really?


Although Pryor isn't about to call them dirty letters -- Lee wrote sexually explicit letters to various women (Pryor wont say how many) for DECADES.   DECADES.

Even after the Civil War, Lee writes sexually explicit letters-! No, not to his wife -- he wrote religious sounding BS to her.  

But to others?  Pryor is cryptic, but he jokes about sex tricks and brags about his son's sexual ability.   He could have seen that displayed, by the way, in the slave barn, but who knows?

Pryor writes "there is no evidence"  Lee did the things in his letters-- but how many women have you written sexually explicit letters to, that you weren't sexual with?   And dozens? For years?

Remember, this was prude time -- men didn't write sexually explicit letters, but Lee did.

What evidence does she need?

She also claims the same "there is no evidence"  linquistic trick, when refering to which white man at Arlington was the father of many of the white or light skinned slaves.  Pryor says "there is no evidence"  Lee was involved in that.  Oh really?

Actually there is evidence SOMEONE white, SOMEONE Lee and SOMEONE in power at Arlington raped the slave girls. Could it have been Lee?   WHo cares, he had them whipped, tortured, terrorized and caught -- his sins against those girls are monumental. And what moral code would stop him from raping them?

That moral code that stopped him from whipping them?  That moral code that stopped him from paying hunters to kidnap them?  

That moral code that stopped him from selling children away from the mother?   That moral code?

Got a clue for ya -- Lee could spew a good religious letter, but he was not a moral guy.  Too complicated?


Pryor is artful about the escapees - but she gets in enough -- he spent a lot of money and time getting slave girls back.  He taunted the girl when the bounty hunter brought her to him, and he immediately had her stripped and whipped.

Get this -- according overlapping newspaper reports at the time -- Lee's over seer refused to whip the girl, because she was so young, according to witnesses.

 That's right, newspapers BEFORE the Civil war, reported Lee's cruelty to slaves, and to slave girls in particular.    After the Civil War, reporters spoke to former slaves, who confirmed the stories.


But LEE -- LEE HIMSELF confirms both the newspapers reports, and the interview with former slaves, in his slave ledgers.

The newspapers that reported Lee's tortures (and torture is the right word) mentioned bounty hunters name, and dates, and local jails where the slaves were kept till Lee wanted them brought to him.

Goofy false claims -- Lee and all his officers would pray during battle, dismount as bombs blew up around him. This is the kind of absurdity we get about Lee, as "scholars" just repeat the nonsense made up by hustlers selling books.  No one claimed Lee did anything like this -- at the time.   

Pryor -- to her credit --looked for and found those names, and those dates, and other things Lee wrote himself, that validated the reports of Lee's tortures, "unquestionably".   So this is not some story someone told after the Civil War, or they heard it blah blah. This is newspaper reports, confirmed by witnesses, and by Lee's own papers. 

Remember that.

 If he was against slavery, and he freed his wife's slaves, and only "servants" remained tho refused to leave because they loved him SO much, what's he doing sending bounty hunters out for MONTHS?

Lee paid far higher bounties for slave girls -- gee, I wonder why?   Could they carry 600% more water? Dig 600% more potatoes for Lee to eat? 

Lee  paid 600% more for females, and he was a frugal man, intent on turning a profit from those slaves.  You will figure out why Lee paid much more -- take your time, it will come to you.


By the way, though Pryor claims Lee was a "planter" -he did no planting, and his money did not come from selling veggies at a farmers market.  

Lee's money came from selling and renting human beings.  The Deep South had the cotton plantations, Lee did not, he  had a slave plantation - that raised SLAVES for profit.   Not that having cotton plantations was any less vile.  But Lee did not sell cotton. He sold people. 

In fact, Lee's slaves had good reason to try to escape - Lee was a cruel slaver, not a moderate one, not a kind one.  Pryor, to her credit, reports Lee's slaves said he was "the worst man we ever seen"

 Lee regularly separated mothers from their children -- he may have even done it for punishment. Pryor tells us most very wealthy slavers tried to keep mother and child together --not Lee.  No, Pryor does NOT show us, or even tell us, why she would say this, remember she was using his own papers, and that vile fact that Lee would separate mothers from their children was in there, doubtlessly so clear Pryor could not ignore it.   So tell us what it was?


A rather honest drawing of Lee, showing his "comb over" that covered his bald  head, that he was so vain about.


 Part of the problem is the larger myth that slavery was "not that bad" and that slaves were treated well  -- especially by men like Lee.

Wrong -- violence was the heart of slavery, and  slave owners could not be slave owners long, if they did not threaten and use violence. 

Lee himself wrote that pain was "necessary for their instruction"  and Pryor relates that Lee was more cruel -- not less -- than other slave owners of his social status.

 Slave masters used every torture -- physical and mental -- to keep their slaves obedient.   To whip two or three slaves, in front of the other slaves, was exactly what Lee did in the famous incident that reached the newspapers, at the time.

But torture was not the only threat -- selling children away from the mother was one of the tortures and disciplines.  And rape, even at Arlington, was common. Yes, it was.

See for yourself -- Lee's papers had proof of rapes, so much so that Pryor, who adores Lee and it must have torn her apart to admit it -- rapes were common AT ARLINGTON.

Slave masters were not the kind hearted well spoken Christian men the South hopes you believe, and is shown in movies.   In fact, the religious BS seems more of an excuse and cover.   There is a difference between excuses men give -- and the reasons they really do things.


Pryor won't say WHO raped the girls --she won't use names.  At one point Pryor even calls the relationship of master to slave women as "dalliances". Yeah, dalliance -- Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers had a "dalliance" -- its a fun, flirtatious, but not necessarily sexual relationship.   But Pryor uses that word -- really.

Only later -- after her readers assume Lee and the other white men were like Fred Astaire and the slave girls were Ginger s-- does Pryor mention the violence.  Yes, violence, involved in rapes.  Or as Pryor so artfully writes "Coercion was used in those situations".

Coercion? You mean beatings?  Used? By who?  No names -- gee wonder why.  Can Pryor write a simple sentence? Of course.

But simple candid sentences found no home in the book -- instead "Coercion was used in those situations".

Do you think Lee, or whoever wrote to him about the rapes, used the sentence "Coercion was used in the situation to rape the 12 year old girl".  

No -- but Pryor got this information from LEE's PAPERS.  She had to translate whatever she saw to "Orwellian double speak" -- and passive voice, with no clear actor, is a good a way as any to gloss over tortures and rapes.

In those situations?  What situations?  She means the RAPES. She was writing about rapes, when she used that sentence. Someone (nameless) used violence (coersion) in those situations (rapes).

Pryor is artful - - to the point of Orwellian double talk and essentially lying  -- but she gets information in that no one dared whisper before. 

And times it seems Pryor is writing two books at once -- one on the surface, to get past the Lee family and Virginia Historical Society.   That's the praise Lee parts. Her narrative if very flattering.

Still, carefully, so carefully, Pryor also gets in the rapes, the bounties, the whippings, she even gets in his purchase of free people he turned INTO slaves. Yes, he did. 

Her most careful language is about his purchase of "others" from his bounty hunters -- yes they caught escaped slaves in the North for him, and he paid them, per his slave ledgers.  But Lee also bought "others" -- others meaning, NOT his escaped slaves.


Pryor claims Lee "failed to fill out the time consuming paper work"  regarding his bounty hunter's bounty  -- as if there was paperwork for kidnapping free people and turning them into slaves.   What the hell paperwork? 

Pryor finishes that artful dodge, saying cryptically "technically, Lee may have broken the law."   Technically nothing, Lee bought women and children from bounty hunters -- and some (Pryor won't tell us how many) had never been slaves before.

Oh -- but remember Lee claimed slave ownership because slaves were "better off here than in Africa".  That makes perfect sense to stupid people, never mind that none of Lee's slaves were from Africa, and he turned people into slaves that were from Pennsylvania.

Lee could make excuses for slavery -- but when he wanted women and children, he got them the old fashioned way: he bought them.


Lee  had his soldiers capture free women and children, that were never slaves in their lives, but they had dark skin.  And they were unlucky enough to be seen by Lee's bounty hunters.

If you think bounty hunters and slave owners gave a shit about rights of free people --  you don't know what motivated men like Lee and his hunters.  They used violence to get what they wanted -- and dreamed up excuses later.  Including slave torture, slave rape, and the capture of free people, turning them into slaves.

Oh my my my, the things your history teacher and text book "forgot to mention".  But they told you about his pet chicken.

But they probably told you all about Lee's  horse -- right? And maybe even told you how Lee had pet chickens.  Yeah, history books love to do that crap.

Then they just repeated each other, like an echo.  Which is fine, if the original stuff was true -but it never was true.

Pryor even tries to defuse the torturesLee not only had whipping, which is torture- - but he used other physical tortures!   

But Pryor has an excuse ready for Lee -- one that Lee never claimed, so Pryor had to dream up.   No, Lee wasn't cruel, or hateful, or sadistic.  He screamed at girls as he had them whipped, he taunted girls BEFORE they were whipped.   But that was not his fault -- ya see, Pryor writes the tortures (yes, it was torture) was just an unfortunate result of "Lee's poor cross cultural communication skills".

Yeah, that's it. Poor communication!  And for added measure, to fool the stupid, Pryor added "poor cross cultural" communication skills.

Bet no one told you.

Lee would do the same thing in the Civil War --he ordered his soldiers to capture free blacks in the North, when he was on his Northern campaign, to be taken South and sold INTO slavery.

Yeah --that Lee. 


That's not quite the Lee as told to Virginia kids, and believed by many.  We are told often that Lee "never owned slaves, was against slavery, and freed his "inherited"  slaves long before the Civil War".

Utter nonsense, Lee BOUGHT more slaves, and paid bounty hunters for slaves, according to his slave ledgers, his own handwritten records.

Furthermore Lee's records show he was apparently obsessed with the capture of escaped slaves -- and dozens, perhaps over 100 -- tried to escape. Pryor does mention that his hunters were looking for 12 at one time, one of those a light skinned slave.

But Lee also bought "others" -- meaning other than his escaped slaves-- he bought humans his hunters found in the North. See below.



Pryor oddly adds a page about George Mason's opinion of men "raised from birth" to see slavery as Godly.    Mason never met Robert E Lee ---though he knew Lee's father.  

So why on earth put Mason and his opinion of men like Lee --raised from birth to see slavery as Godly --  in her book? 

Cause Mason eviscerated men like Lee, in the vernacular of the day. Mason said things that Pryor dare not utter--is that why she put his quotes in this book?

Mason essentially said,  of men like Lee  were, to use our vernacular, sociopaths dressed up for church..

Mason used vernacular of the time, said such men were "of a diseased mind"  raised in an "infernal" school, and taught to be blind to sufferings they imposed on others. 

Mason could have told us what slave owners laughed about,  at slave auctions, what they did to women once they bought them, but he was not that specific.   He did tell us they were of diseased mind and from the infernal school (school of hell).

The rape of slave girls was COMMON. C O M M O N.  And of course, Mason would know that.

 Just cause Lee and other slavers spoke religious BS as cover, didn't change that, and didn't fool Mason, because all slave owners were fluent in religious excuses and double talk.

Mason, of course, knew that.

Mason even predicted men like Lee (raised from birth to see slavery as from GOD)  would  lead the South into a violent calamity regarding the SPREAD of slavery. 


New York Times recently ran an article about Lee's capture of free blacks during the Civil War, and how he had them taken back to the South, and sold as slaves.

But Lee did that BEFORE the war -- using his own bounty hunters.  Lee's hunters found free blacks in the North, while searching for his escaped slaves, and just grabbed them too, and Lee bought them. See more about that below. That's in Pryor's book -- oh so carefully, but it's there.


Pryor gets in the fact Lee paid for "others" besides the escaped slavery-- simply saying the bounty hunters found "others," and then saying Lee "failed to fill out the time consuming paper work".

What the hell paperwork is she talking about? 

Yes, it gets that crazy, when you justify slavery.


Noble - the greatest soldier, but by far the greatest Christian.  

His "only concern" was "to lead men to Christ".  Blah blah blah.

Even today, people try to claim Lee SAVED THE UNION!!

There simply is no bullshit too goofy to sell to suckers, and suckers will believe.

Strangely, Lee took time out of leading men to Christ to have girls whipped, pay drastically higher bounties for girls, and even write sexually explicit letters to numerous women for decades. So maybe that whole "Lead men to Christ" thing was not in only concern. 

Dozens -- probably hundreds - of books about Lee after 1880, and each one more fact free, but more "adorational" than the last.  Like this one by John Esten Cooke -- still sold today as fact (!) -- that has Lee and all his officers dismounting during battle, for a long silent prayer, as bombs blew up around them.  

Yet these books are largely the basis -- the source -- for so much of "Lee scholarship".   These guys were just making shit up, frankly.   And "scholars" that came after, just repeated the myths. 

In fact, says Lee's supposed "scholarly" biographer, Douglas Southall Freeman, Lee "had no faults to probe".  Beloved by his slaves, who he freed, Lee is a man now AT THE RIGHT HAND OF CHRIST HIS LORD.  No, Lee was not beloved, and no, Lee did not free his slaves, and no, Lee was not against slavery.


Historian Alan Nolan said 20 years ago, essentially,  we need to "start over" about Lee, because what we claim about Lee was not based on scholarship.

Nolan  had no clue how correct he was......  Nolan then "Considered"  Lee -- but did not have Lee's slave ledgers, and dirty letters.    Nolan had no idea the "super biographer" Douglas Southall Freeman lied his ass off (yes, he did, see below).

Nolan had no idea of Lee's dirty letters, or slave ledgers.  Nolan did not know about Lee's  bounty payments, evidence of tortures and rapes. Even without those documents, Nolan posited that the "scholarship" about Lee was essentially not scholarship at all, but idolatry, though he did not use the word.  

In the world of "Lee scholarship"  no accolade was too goofy to praise Lee.   The best Christian, now seated at the right hand of Christ,  caring only for lost souls, saving sparrows from fires, freeing his wife's slaves -- all nonsense.

When you hear of people like Eisenhower praising Robert E Lee, this is the kind of nonsense they were fed.  They were not told about Lee's tortures or bounty hunters, or using slaves to dig trenches.  

They were not told he ran from Richmond on the false rumor of a breech in the slave built earth works -- and that Lee left the people of Richmond to their fate.  Lee even ordered warehouses burned -- certain the Union trooop would soon be there.  Instead, no Union troops showed up --until the mayor of Richmond rode out and ASKED THE UNION SOLDIERS to come help put the fires out.

That's not history, it's not even close. In fact, it's bullshit. 


No, not Lee's slave ledgers.
Pryor avoids even calling  Lee's slave ledgers by their common name. 

Still, Pryor chose carefully -- this picture, of a Lee drawing, she deemed more important to show than his own handwritten record of payments for slave girls, and bounty hunters.   Does this Lee drawing really show you anything?

No. Of course it doesn't show you anything.



A book Lee quoted from.

 These slave ledgers would be vastly important, if Lee had never taken part in the war, they are so detailed and precise.