The Descent Of General Robert Edward Lee From Robert The Bruce, Of Scotland.
By Professor Wm. Winston Fontaine, of Louisville.
(From the Southern Historical Society Papers)

(The following paper which was read before the Louisville branch of the Southern Historical Society on March 29th, 1881, has excited great interest and there has been a widely expressed desire that we should publish it in our Papers.)

        At a Texas State Fair some four or five years since the President of the Confederate States was seen turning, with eyes bedimmed by tears, away from a picture at which he had been silently gazing. Shall we for a moment glance at this picture? It is one of McArdle's splendid battle paintings. On a canvas of five feet by eight is seen one of the wild charges in which the red battle banner of the South was borne on to victory. In the immediate foreground there is a pause in the rush; and the irregular lines to the right and left are sweeping past the magnificent group which arrests our attention. A stalwart veteran, with herculean strength, has just seized a gallant charger by the foam flecked rein, and is turning the rearing steed back to the rear. The mingling of emotion in the rider's mind is wonderfully depicted. The true soldier's gaudium certaminis is all there, but modified and kept under by the patriot's forgetfulness of self and devotion to duty, which is shown by a certain eager and slightly anxious gaze upon the distance, as if watching approaching re enforcements. The rider recalls to our minds vivid suggestions of the knightly leaders of the medieval ages, the recital of whose deeds flushed our cheeks in boyhood. He looks as Charlemagne may have done that summer morning in the good year of our Lord 778, when he heard of the chivalric death of Roland and his whole corps in the gloomy defiles of the Roncesvalles; or as Alfred the Great, of England, that beautiful May morning when leading his troops at Ethandune; or as William the Norman, when he galloped over the green sward of Hastings, through the soft October evening sunshine, leading to the final charge, his chivalry who had struck up the soul inspiring, three centuried song of Roland. No -- nor more stately was Robert Bruce on the eve of Bannockburn, when he struck down from the saddle Sir Henry de Bohun, than, at the battle of the Wilderness, was Robert Lee, in whose veins coursed the mingled blood of these four above mentioned heroes of the middle ages.
        Recently, while collecting material for writing a biography of Major General Alexander Spotswood, Governor of Virginia from 1710 to 1723, I discovered that through him Robert Lee, of Virginia, was seventeenth in direct descent from Robert Bruce, of Scotland. Moreover, that of the five heroes who particularly distinguished themselves on the glorious field of Bannockburn, in driving back the invaders of their beloved country, Lee, through the same channel, was the direct descendant of four, namely: King Robert; Thomas Randolph, Earl of Moray; Walter, the High Steward; and Sir Robert de Keith, Great Marischal of Scotland. These facts have never been brought out in any of the biographies of Lee. Indeed, until now, they were unknown to any of the descendants of Governor Spotswood, during the present century. I know this to be the case, for I have often conversed with my paternal grandmother, whose maiden name was Martha Dandridge, a great granddaughter of Governor Spotswood, on the subject of the ancestry of the Spotswoods. She was quite an antiquary, and knew many of the traditionary tales of the "Knights of the Golden Horseshoe," besides their romantic ride over the blue mountains of Virginia, down to the cool waters of the silvery Shenandoah. The old lady, with pardonable pride, used to tell us children of her ancestor, the Governor, being on the staff of the Duke of Marlborough, and of his being wounded in the breast at the battle of Blenheim, August 13, 1704; of the Governor's grandfather, Sir Robert Spotswood, of whom the Earl of Clarendon says: "The Scots put to death several persons of name who had followed the Marquis (of Montrose) and had been taken prisoners, among whom Sir Robert Spotswood was one, a worthy, honest, loyal gentleman, and as wise a man as that nation had at that time (whom the King had made secretary of the State of that Kingdom)."
        She once read to me Sir Walter Scott's account of Sir Robert Spotswood's execution; and I well remember how her eyes indignantly flashed, when she came to Sir Robert's calm, but withering reply to the canting Puritan minister, who interrupted his last devotions. With the exception of some dim ancestral traditions of the old border Barons of Spotswood, and more especially of one William Spotswood, a man of great bravery, who accompanied King James IV in his unfortunate expedition into England in 1513, and poured forth his life's blood with his royal master on the fatal field of Flodden, my grandmother's family lore did not extend much beyond Sir Robert's father, Archbishop Spotswood, primate of Scotland, who crowned King Charles I.
        To the philosophic student of history, and to him who holds the theory that both mental and physical characteristics are frequently hereditary for many generations, and that sometimes after the lapse of centuries there is an almost facsimile reproduction of some remote ancestor, this Brucean descent of General Lee will be of interest. I shall, therefore, present a genealogical chain connecting General Lee to Duncan, King of Scotland, not a link of which is doubtful, for each is proved by documentary evidence.
        It is noticeable that many of the traits of character, such as military talents, pertinacity of purpose, loyalty of soul, and unselfish devotion to native land, so fully developed in General Lee, are seen, more or less distinctly marked, in all his ancestors of whom history has given us a picture.

        I. Buchanan in his "History of Scotland," tells us that Duncan was of a gentle disposition, and gave early indications of his great popularity. In the most difficult times, when he had been appointed Governor of Cumberland by his grandfather, Malcolm II, of Scotland, and, by reason of the Danish troops spread everywhere, he could not obtain access to the King of England, of whom he held his Earldom in fief, yet he faithfully supported the English cause, until the whole of that kingdom being subdued, Canute undertook an expedition against him, and then at last he swore fealty to the Danes upon the same conditions as he had formerly done homage to the English. He was also popular in this that he administered justice with the greatest equality, and every year visited his provinces to hear the complaints of the poor, and as far as he could prevent it, suffered none of them to be oppressed. But as these virtues procured for him the affection of the good, so they weakened his authority among the lovers of turbulence Duncan in the seventh year of his reign, was waylaid by Macbeth and killed, but not in the manner as stated by Shakespeare.
        Duncan married a daughter of Siward, Earl of Northumberland under Hardicanute and Edward the Confessor. Under the latter reign Siward assisted the crown in resisting the rebellion of Earl Godwin; and such was the vigor of his movements that Godwin was defeated, and, for a time, obliged to quit the kingdom. After this Siward gained much reputation by his military operations in Scotland against Macbeth.
        Knight thus speaks of him: "This was the Siward of Shakespeare; war like Siward; old Siward, the protector of his grandson Malcolm, the son of the murdered Duncan, the father of young Siward, who perished on the battlefield where Macbeth fell. "Where were his wounds?"' said the stout old Earl. "In the front." -- "Then I would wish no better fate."
        It is stated that when he found himself in the arms of death, he caused his servants to clothe him in complete armor, and sitting erect on his couch, with spear in hand, declared that in that position, the only one worthy of a warrior, he would patiently await the fatal moment. Duncan had two sons by his wife, daughter of Siward. The eldest son,
       II. Malcolm, having defeated Macbeth, was proclaimed King at Scoon, April, 1057. It is stated that, now being established on the throne, a secret conspiracy was formed against his life. The plot being revealed to Malcolm, he invited the chief conspirator to court, and, having engaged him in a familiar conversation, led him to a retired valley. The King being alone with the conspirator, after upbraiding him with the favor conferred upon him, confronted him with a detail of the plot, and added, "Now we are both armed; attack me if you dare, and obtain by your valor, the prize you seek by treachery." The surprised noble threw himself to the ground, and obtained pardon from one not less merciful than brave. Malcolm married Magaret Atheling, the granddaughter of Edmund Ironside, and the daughter of Edward Atheling, by Agatha, daughter of the Emperor Henry II, of Germany. In the year 1068 Edgar Atheling, with his mother and two sisters, privately withdrew from the court of William the Conqueror, and took shipping, with the intention of seeking refuge in Hungary; but the vessel, by contrary winds, was driven into Frith of Fourth. Miss Strickland writes: "Malcolm Canmore, the young unmarried King of Scotland, who had just regained his dominions, happened to be present when the royal fugitives landed, and was so struck with the beauty of the lady Margaret Atheling, that in a few days, he asked her in marriage of her brother. Edgar joyfully gave the hand of the dowerless Princess to the young and handsome sovereign, who had received the exiled English in the most generous and honorable manner, and whose disinterested affection was sufficient testimony of his disposition. After her marriage, the Saxon Princess became the happy instrument of diffusing the blessings of Christianity throughout her husband's dominions, commencing the work of conversion in the proper place, her own household and court. The influence which her personal charms had, in the first instance, won over the heart of her royal husband, her virtues and mental powers increased and retained to the last hour of Malcolm's existence."
        William the Conqueror on being informed of the arrival of the Saxon royal family in Scotland, sent an ambassador to Malcolm demanding that Edgar should be delivered up to him, and threatening war in case of refusal. Malcolm, who considered it both faithless and cruel, to surrender his suppliant, his guest and relation, a man against whom even his foes could allege no crime, into the hands of an enemy, determined to endure every extremity at whatever cost it might be, than basely yield to the demand of William. War was the result of this refusal. The Conqueror regarding the Scottish war as a thing of little importance, sent Roger, a Norman nobleman, against Malcolm. But the King defeated and dispersed this army. Richard, Earl of Gloucester, was then sent with a stronger force, but he was incessantly harassed by Patrick Dunbar, an ancestor of General Lee, and kept constantly engaged in light skirmishes, so that he accomplished but little. Odo, William's brother, was now sent with a much more powerful body of forces, and committed extensive ravages in Northumberland. But on his return, with an immense booty, he was attacked by Malcolm, who recovered the spoil, besides inflicting considerable slaughter and making many prisoners. The army being recruited, William's eldest son, Robert, an accomplished knight and able general, was placed in command. But he rather repelled the Scots than prosecuted an aggressive war. He entered into a negotiation with the Scottish monarch, which ended in a friendly treaty. External peace was followed by intestine disorders. Malcolm set himself industriously to work, in composing these difficulties and reforming public morals. In the meantime William Rufus ascended the throne of England Seeking an occasion of war with the Scots, he surprised the castle of Alnwick, and put the garrison to death; and Malcolm after having in vain demanded restitution, laid siege to the place with a large army. The besieged being reduced to extremity, requested a parley, to treat of surrender; and desired that the King in person would come to receive the keys, which were offered on the point of a spear. Malcolm whilst in the act of accepting them, was treacherously killed. His oldest son, Edward, sprang forward to avenge his father's death, but received a wound, of which he almost instantly expired. Margaret, overwhelmed with grief at the loss of her beloved husband and son, did not long survive the calamity. Thus Malcolm, in 1093, fell, and as Buchanan says: "After having reigned thirty six years, transmitted to posterity a name stained by no vice, but distinguished by many illustrious virtues. By Margaret he had six sons and two daughters. Their youngest son,
       III. David I, was born in 1080. Shortly after the death of King Malcolm, his brother, Donald Bane, came in possession of the kingdom; and Edgar Atheling caused his sister's children, five sons and two daughters, who were all of immature age, to be brought to him in England. The royal children were carefully educated. Prince David had remained with his sister, Queen Matilda, in England, while his brothers, Edgar and Alexander, successively mounted the Scottish throne. In 1110 he married his cousin Matilda, Countess of Northampton. Her father was "Old Siward's" second son, Waltheof, renowned for his gallant defense of York. Her mother was Judith, niece of William the Conqueror. The Countess brought her husband a son, Henry, in whom the dispositions of both father and mother were early apparent. David on the death of his brother, Alexander I, without children, succeeded to the throne April 27, 1124. By attending the court of so accomplished a Prince as Henry I, he had gained great experience in the art of government. He was immediately called to the difficult task of defending the independence of the Scottish Church against the pretensions of the Archbishop of York, and the prejudice of the Pope. His prudence finally disappointed both. He proved himself an able general in 1130, during the insurrection of Angus, Earl of Moray, who claimed a title to the throne.
        King David, in the contest between Stephen, Count of Boulogne, and the Empress Matilda for the crown of England, warmly took the part of his neice. In the various engagements between his troops and the adherents of Stephen, David was generally successful. He lost the battle of the Standard, fought on the 22d of August, 1138, but the defeat was not decisive, for the Scottish king was almost immediately able to act on the offensive. Buchanan says: "But while all his public measures succeeded according to his desire, he was afflicted with a double distressing family calamity in the early deaths of his wife and only son. Deprived of a consort illustrious by descent, of exquisite beauty and accomplished manners, prematurely cut down in the flower of her age, he cherished such an affectionate remembrance of her when dead, whom he so tenderly loved when alive, that although he survived her upward of twenty years, he remained not only unmarried, but without attaching himself to any other woman. Yet did not the excess of his grief prevent his attending to his public duty either in peace or war. He died, A.D. 1153, on the 24th of May, so dear to all, that his loss appeared to be that of the best of fathers, rather than that of a King. Although his whole life was exemplary beyond anything which history records, yet for a few years before his death, he devoted himself so entirely to preparation for another and a better world, that he gently increased the veneration which his earlier years had inspired. As he equaled the most excellent of the former kings in his warlike achievements, and excelled them in his cultivation of the arts of peace, at last, as if he had ceased to contend with others for pre eminence in virtue, he endeavored to rival himself; and in this he so succeeded that the utmost ingenuity of the most learned who should attempt to delineate the resemblance of a good King could not be able to conceive one so excellent as David, during his whole life, evinced himself." Lord Hailes, after quoting this last sentence, adds: "This is the sentiment of a historian whose principles are esteemed unfavorable to monarchy -- such a sketch by Buchanan is of a greater value than the studied performance of a thousand panegyrists." His only son,
       IV. Henry, Prince Royal of Scotland, and Earl of Huntingdon, was born 1115. At the battle of the Standard, Earl Henry gallantly charged through the English line of battle, and, with the precipitation of youth, attacked their rear guard. In 1139 he married Adama, daughter of William de Warren, Earl of Surry, the son of Gundred, youngest daughter of William the Conqueror, and his wife, Matilda, of Flanders. The mother of Adama was Elizabeth, daughter of Hugh Magnus, Count of Vermandois, second son of King Henry I, of France. Prince Henry, of Scotland, died June 12, 1152. He was one of the most accomplished princes of his time. Buchanan says: "The affection which both the Scots and the English entertained for the young prince made them consider his death not only as a public loss, but as individually, the greatest private misfortune, for such was the integrity and moderation of his mind, at an age when the effervescence of youth is apt to become licentious, that the rarest and most admirable fruit, was universally expected from so ingenious a disposition, when ripened by experience. Prince Henry left by his wife Adama, three sons and three daughters. His youngest son,
       V. David, Earl of Huntingdon, was born 1144. In 1174 we find him in France serving in the English army under King Henry II, during which time his brother, King William, of Scotland, was taken prisoner by the English. Earl David thereupon, having received a passport, returned to Scotland, and sent ambassadors to England to treat about his brother's release. In 1189 David was present at the coronation of Richard I, and the following year he accompanied this Prince to Syria, where he distinguished himself at the siege of Acre, and in other military operations. He is the Sir Kenneth in Sir Walter Scott's Talisman. He died in 1219. He married Maud, daughter of Hugh Kivilioch, Earl of Chester. Their second daughter,
        VI. Isabel, married Robert de Brus, Lord of Anuandale, the fourth in descent from Robert de Brus, a noble Norman knight, who distinguished himself on the field of Hastings. Brus died in 1245, and the Lady Isabel, 1251. Their son,
        VII. Robert Bruce, Lord of Annandale, led, in 1264, a body of Scottish auxiliaries to the assistance of King Henry III. On the death of Queen Margaret, in 1290, he claimed the throne of Scotland. He died in 1295, aged eighty five. In 1244 he married Isabel, daughter of Gilbert de Clare, third Earl of Gloucester. Their eldest son,
       VIII. Robert Bruce, Lord of Annandale, born about 1245 accompanied King Edward I to Palestine in 1269, and was ever after highly regarded by that Prince. In 1271 he married Margaret, sole heiress of the Earl of Carrick, her father, who had fallen in the holy war. The young crusader, Robert Bruce, who is said to have been by far the handsomest Knight of the age, met the fair Countess while hunting on her estate. She courteously invited and almost constrained him to visit her castle, in the near neighborhood. While here a similarity of age, beauty, family and manners easily produced a mutual affection, and they were married. When the King, whose right it was to bestow the young lady in marriage, was informed of the fact he appeared highly offended, but was afterward appeased by the intervention of friends, and Bruce, in right of his Countess, became Earl of Carrick. Bruce died in 1304. His Wife died before October, 1292. Their oldest son,
        IX. Robert Bruce, King of Scotland, was born the 11th of July 1274, and died June 7, 1329. He married first Isabella, eldest daughter of Donald, tenth Earl of Marr. Their daughter,

        I. Marjory, Princess Royal of Scotland, fell into the hands of the English 1306, and was detained a prisoner in charge of Henry Percy till 1314, when she was conducted to Scotland by Walter, the sixth high steward of Scotland, to whom she was married in 1315. She died in March, 1316. Her husband, Walter, born in 1294, brought a noble body of men to the aid of Bruce. In the battle of Bannockburn he and his cousin, Sir James Douglas, commanded the Third division. The same year he was appointed to receive, on the borders, the Queen of King Robert, Marjory, his daughter, and other illustrious Scottish prisoners. On that occasion he formed an attachment for the Princess. He died April 9, 1326. "Had he lived," says an old writer, "he might have equaled Randolph and Douglas; but his course of glory was short." The only child of the Princess Marjory was
        II. Robert Stuart, King of Scotland, born March 2, 1316. In early youth he, in various encounters with the English, gave proof of military powers and devotion to his country. He died April 19, 1390. He married first Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Adam More, of Rowallan. Their fifth daughter,
        III. Catherine, married David Lindsay, first Earl of Crawford, one of the most accomplished knights of the age. He acted the principal part in the tournament at London bridge in May, 1390. Lord Welles, the English Ambassador to Scotland, at a banquet, where the Scots and English were discoursing of warlike deeds, said let words have no place. If you know not the chivalry of Englishmen appoint me a day and place where you list and you shall have experience. Whereupon, Sir David assenting, Lord Welles chose London bridge. Lindsay repaired to London with a gallant train of thirty persons, and on the appointed day appeared in the list against Lord Welles. At the sound of trumpet they, upon their barbed steeds, encountered each other with lances ground square. In this passage Lindsay sat so firmly that, notwithstanding Lord Welles's lance was broken upon his helmet, he stirred not. The spectators cried out that, contrary to the law of arms, Lindsay was bound to the saddle; whereupon he sprung to the ground, and then vaulted to his horse without assistance. In the third course he hurled Lord Welles out of the saddle to the ground. Then dismounting, he supported his adversary, and, with great humanity, visited him every day till he recovered from the effects of his fall. Lord Crawford died between the years 1407 and 1412. The oldest son of Lord Crawford and the Princess Catherine,
        IV. Alexander Lindsay, second Earl of Crawford, was conspicuous as a statesman and soldier. He married Mariota, daughter and heiress of Sir David Dunbar, of Cockburn, sixth son of George, tenth Earl of Dunbar and March. Sir David Dunbar was the grandson of Lady Agnes, the heroic daughter of Thomas Randolph, Earl of Moray. Of Lady Agnes, history tells us that her husband, the Earl of Dunbar, leaving his castle in her charge during the winter of 1338, the Earl of Salisbury laid siege to it. The Countess performed all the duties of an able commander; animated the garrison by her exhortation, and braved every danger. The English, after a siege of nineteen weeks, retired. Alexander Lindsay, Lord Crawford, fell in the battle of Aberbrothwick January 13, 1446. His third son, by his wife Lady Mariota Dunbar, was
        V. Sir Walter Lindsay, of Beufort and Panbride, who married secondly Isabel, daughter of William, Lord Livingston, and by her had a son,
        VI. Sir David Lindsay, of Edzell and Beufort, who died 1527, and had by his wife Catherine, daughter of Fotheringham, of Powrie, a son,
        VII. Walter Lindsay, who fell at the battle of Flodden, 9th of September, 1513. He married a daughter of the noble family of Erskine, of Dun, a descendant of Sir Robert de Keith, Great Marischal of Scotland, who had command of the horse at Bannockburn. Walter Lindsay's second son,
        VIII. Alexander Lindsay, married a daughter of Barclay, of Mathers. Their son,
        IX. David Lindsay, was Bishop of Ross in 1600. His daughter,
        X. Rachel Lindsay, married John Spottiswoode, who was born 1565. Douglas thus speaks of him: "He became one of the greatest men of the kingdom for knowledge, learning, virtue and merit. He had few equals, and was excelled by none. He was Archbishop of St. Andrews, Lord High Chancellor of Scotland, etc., and in every station in life acquitted himself with dexterity, fidelity and honor, and as the life and transactions of this truly great man are fully recorded in his 'History of the Church of Scotland,' and briefly by Mr. Crawford in his 'Lives of the Officers of the State,' to these we refer the reader."
        Archbishop Spottiswoode was descended from an ancient baronial family in the parish of Gordon, in the county of Berwick, being the son of the Rev. Dr. John Spottiswoode, 1510-1585, "a man of great learning and piety." In Allibone's "Directory of Authors" Dr. John Spottiswoode (the father) is given as "a zealous Protestant divine, one of the compilers of the First Book of Discipline, and of the confessions of Faith." Archbishop Spottiswoode, the Lord Chancellor, is esteemed a graceful as well as a strong writer. He died in Landon 27th of December, 1639, and by the King's order was most pompously interred in Westminster Abby. His second son,
        XI. Sir Robert Spottiswoode, was Lord President of the College of Justice, and Secretary of Scotland in the time of Charles I, and the author of "The Practicks of the Laws of Scotland." I have already given Clarendon's estimate of this learned man. Douglas speaks of him as "a man of extraordinary parts, learning and merit." Sir Robert was born 1596, and executed for adhering to the royal cause, January 17, 1646. In 1629 he married Bethia, eldest daughter of Sir Alexander Morrison, of Preston Grange, one of the Senators of the College of Justice. The mother of Lady Bethia Spottiswoode, Eleanor Maule, was, through her ancestors, the Maules, Lords Panmure and the Lindsays, Lords Crawford, twelfth in descent from King Robert the Bruce. The third son of Sir Robert Spottiswoode was
        XII. Robert Spottiswoode, who, having studied medicine was appointed physician to the Governor and garrison at Tangiers. He went to that place with the Earl of Middleton, and died there in 1680. He was quite distinguished as a botanist, and in 1673 published a work entitled "Plants Within the Fortifications of Tangiers." He left by his wife, Catherine, widow Elliott, only one son,
        XIII. Major General Alexander Spotswood, born at Tangiers, 1676. The Virginian historian, Charles Campbell, a descendant of Governor Spotswood, says: "He was bred in the army from his childhood, served with distinction under the Duke of Marlborough, and in 1710 was appointed Governor of Virginia. Being a master of the military art, he kept the militia under excellent discipline. In 1716 he made the first complete discovery of a passage over the Blue Ridge mountains. He urged upon the British Government the policy of establishing a chain of posts beyond the Alleghanies, from the lakes to the Mississippi, to restrain the encroachments of the French. He reduced to submission the Indian tribes, and, blending humanity with vigor, taught them that while he could chastise their insolence, he commiserated their fate. He took measures to extend the advantages of a Christian education to the Indian children. He was a proficient in mathematics, and well skilled in architecture. He rebuilt the College Of William and Mary. He was styled the Tubal Cain of Virginia, and was, indeed, the pioneer of iron manufacture in North America. Salmon, during the last century, says: "Governor Spotswood improved the colony beyond imagination; his conduct produced wonders, and it was the happiness of Virginia that his administration was of a longer duration than usual, whereby he had an opportunity of putting in practice the prudent schemes he had laid."
        Governor Spotswood left in manuscript a historical account of Virginia during his administration, thus affording an unbroken line of five generations of authors bearing the same name, a fact which, as far as I am informed, stands alone in the whole field of literature. Although a Whig in politics, he was a High Churchman, and had high notions of governmental prerogatives; but a long residence in Virginia, and the identity of his interests with those of the Virginians, appear to have greatly changed his views of governmental authority and popular rights. During the year 1724 Governor Spotswood married Ann Butler, daughter of Richard Bryan, Esq., of Westminster. She derived her middle name from James Butler, Duke of Ormond, her relative and godfather. The Governor now resided at Germana. It was here that Colonel William Byrd, of Westover, visited the Governor in 1732. I give the following extract from Colonel Byrd's journal:

"September 27. -- Here I arrived about 3 o'clock, and found only Mrs. Spotswood at home, who received her old acquaintance with many a gracious smile. I was carried into a room elegantly set off with pier glasses, the largest of which came soon after to an odd misfortune. Amongst other favorite animals that cheered this lady's solitude a brace of tame deer ran familiarly about the house, and one of them came to stare at me as a stranger. But, unluckily, seeing his own figure in the glass he made a spring over the tea table that stood under it and shattered the glass to pieces, and falling back upon the tea table made a terrible fracas among the china. This exploit was so sudden, and accompanied with such a noise, that it surprised me and perfectly frightened Mrs. Spotswood. But it was worth all the damage to show the moderation and good humor with which she bore this disaster. In the evening the noble Colonel came home from his mines, who saluted me very civilly, and Mrs. Spotswood's sister, Miss Thecky, who had been to meet him en cavalier, was so kind, too, as to bid me welcome. We talked over a legend of old stories, supped about nine, and then prattled with the ladies till it was time for a traveler to retire. In the meantime I observed my old friend to be very uxorious, and exceedingly fond of his children. This was so opposite to the maxims he used to preach up before he was married, that I could not forbear rubbing up the memory of them. But he gave a good natured turn to his change of sentiments by alleging that whoever brings a poor gentlewoman into so solitary a place, from all her friends and acquaintance, would be ungrateful not to use her and all that belongs to her with all possible tenderness."

        In 1739 Spotswood was made Deputy Postmaster General for the colonies. He promoted Benjamin Franklin to be postmaster for the province of Pennsylvania. Being commissioned Major General, and on the eve of embarking at the head of an expedition fitted out by the English against Carthegena, in South America, Spotswood died at Annapolis, Maryland, June 7, 1740. Governor Spotswood and Ann Butler, his wife, had four children: (1) John, (2) Ann Catherine, (3) Dorathea, (4) Robert.

        (1) John married (1745) Mary, daughter of William Dondridge, Esq., of Elson Green, King William, Va., a captain in the British navy
        (3) Dorathea married (1747) Colonel Nathaniel West Dandridge, a full brother of her sister in law, Mrs. John Spotswood. Mrs. Dorathea Dandridge died in 1773, in the forty sixth year of her age.
        (4) Robert was a subaltern officer under Washington. In 1756, while with a scouting party, he was killed near Fort du Quesne.

        XIV. Ann Catherine married Colonel Bernard Moore, of Chelsea, King William county, Va., a gentleman seventh in descent from Sir Thomas Moore, of Chelsea, England, the author of Utopia. Mrs. Moore was elegant in person and manners. The daughter of a haughty British Governor, she was a strong adherent to the royal government, while her husband and children sympathized with the patriot cause in the revolution. Once, when her husband was absent, upon a sudden alarm of Indians she ordered up all hands, manned and provisioned a boat, and made good her retreat down to West Point. Mrs. Moore died about 1802. Her daughter,
        XV. Ann Butler Moore, married Charles Carter, Esq., of Shirley. Their daughter,
        XVI. Ann Hill Carter, married General Henry Lee -- the 'Light Horse' Harry Lee of the American Revolution -- a descendant, through a long line of distinguished ancestors of Launcelot de Lee, one of William the Conqueror's companions in arms. From this marriage sprung Robert Edward Lee, the illustrious Confederate commander, the seventeenth in descent from King Robert the Bruce, of Scotland. Buchanan thus writes of the Scottish hero: "Robert Bruce, to express much in a few words, was undoubtedly, in every point of view, a great man, and one to whom, from the heroic ages even to these times, we shall find few comparable in every species of virtue. As he was brave in war, so he was moderate in peace; and although unexpected success and a constant flow of victory, after fortune was satiated, or rather fatigued with his sufferings, elevated him to the most splendid pinnacle of glory, yet he appears to me far more admirable in adversity. What strength of mind did he display when assailed at once by so many misfortunes; he not only was not broken, but not even bent. Whose constancy would it not have shaken to have had a wife captive, four heroic brothers cruelly murdered, his friends afflicted with every species of distress; they who escaped death, robbed and fugitives, and he himself not only stripped of an ample patrimony, but of a kingdom, by the most powerful, active and ablest prince of the age? Yet, beset with all these calamities at once, and reduced to the extremities of want, never did he despair, or do or say anything unworthy of a king. At last, at the close of life, when a grievous distemper was added to the troubles of old age, he retained so much self possession that he arranged the present state of the kingdom, and provided for the tranquility of his posterity. With justice was his death lamented by his people, not only as that of an upright king, but of a loving father."
        With a few slight alterations, this passage written over 300 years ago of Robert Bruce, would seem to have been written only ten years ago of Robert Lee, the greatest soldier and the highest type of the chivalric gentleman of the age in which he lived.
        Authorities: Douglas' "Baronage" and "Peerage of Scotland." Buchanan's "History of Scotland." Chalmer's "Caledonia." Anderson's "Royal Genealogies." Hume's and Knight's "Histories of England." Strickland's "Queens of England." Campbell's "History of Virginia."

RETURN TO ROBERT E. LEE BIOGRAPHY PAGE