Sunday, July 15, 2012

Stephen D. Lee Home & Museum - Columbus, Mississippi

Stephen D. Lee Home in Columbus, Mississippi
Stephen D. Lee was a remarkable soldier, political leader, preservationist and educator. At the age of thirty, he became the Confederacy's youngest lieutenant general. Wounded twice in combat, he fought on fields ranging from Second Manassas and Antietam to Tupelo and Nashville.
His home is a treasured museum today in Columbus, Mississippi. Inherited by his wife, the beautiful old brick residence was General Lee's home after the War Between the States (or Civil War) when he did some of his most noteworthy public service.

Lt. Gen. Stephen D. Lee, CSA
Born in Charleston in 1833, Stephen Dill Lee entered the U.S. Military Academy at West Point when he was 17 years old. He graduated in the Class of 1854 alongside J.E.B. Stuart, G.W. Custiss Lee and John Pegram. An outstanding artilleryman who had served in the Third Seminole War, he resigned his commission and entered the service of the South after his home state of South Carolina seceded from the Union.

Serving in the East until 1863, Lee rose to the rank of Brigadier General while fighting with noted heroism at Malvern Hill, Second Manassas, Antietam (Sharpsburg) and Fredericksburg. Ordered to Mississippi to assist in the defense of Vickburg he was wounded at Champions Hill and was captured when Union forces took Vicksburg on July 3, 1863.

Stephen D. Lee Home & Museum
Exchanged after four months, he was promoted to major general and then to lieutenant general. In July 1864 he fought alongside Nathan Bedford Forrest at the Battle of Tupelo. He went on to serve under John Bell Hood in the Franklin and Nashville Campaign, during which he was wounded again while commanding a rear guard action during Hood's retreat out of Tennessee. He recovered in time to take part in the Carolinas campaign and was among the officers and men surrendered at Bennett Place in North Carolina.

Still in his early 30s when the war came to an end, Lee went on to serve his adopted state of Mississippi with great distinction. He was the first president of today's Mississippi State University, a leader in the effort to create Vicksburg National Military Park, a state legislator and the President of the Board of Trustees of the Mississippi Department of Archives & History. From 1904 until his death in 1908, he was national Commander of the United Confederate Veterans (UCV), of which today's Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) is a successor. The Official Charge of the SCV is taken from one of his speeches.

To learn more, please visit

No comments: