Well-read and artistic, with a keen intellect and interest in national events, Mary Lee was steadfast in her faith and unshakeable in her commitments-all in her own very personal style.
Her husband teased about her "forgetfulness in her housekeeping"-but her generous nature balanced his strict sense of order and responsibility. Often on her own, Mrs. Robert E. Lee became a capable military wife, the manager of a growing family. She was also an avid gardener, painter, writer, and seamstress, as well as a children's teacher. Despite crippling arthritis, she constantly gave of herself-nursing her family and friends, tirelessly knitting socks for soldiers, and turning out mementos to support charitable causes.
Until the end of her life at the age of 66, Mary Lee was, according to those who knew and loved her, "bright, sunny-tempered, and uncomplaining, constantly occupied with her books, letters, knitting, and painting..."
This small temporary exhibition highlights objects from the Lee Chapel collection that belonged to Mrs. Robert E. Lee, including her side saddle and items that she hand-sewed or painted.