February 16, 1862.
I am very glad to hear that you are well and that you have attained such a high position by your own merit. I hope you will strive hard to show that you deserve it, and that you will go on increasing in honor and usefulness. Our country requires now every one to put forth all his ability, regardless of self, and I am cheered in my downward path in life by the onward and rising course of my dear sons.
SOURCE: John William Jones, Life and Letters of Robert Edward Lee: Soldier and Man, p. 160