"In the Beginning, all America was Virginia."
William Byrd II
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Learn more about items related to commencement exercises in the VHS collections.

Van de Vyver Institute Diploma
Stories at the Museum, Saturday, 9/20/14. Free & open to all ages. Please use the new Learning Center entrance off Kensington. #rvakids #rva

Reading the Man: A Portrait of Robert E. Lee Through his Private Letters by Elizabeth Brown Pryor

Presenter: 
Elizabeth S. Pryor
Duration: 
(00:39:56)

On May 24, 2007, Ms. Pryor delivered this lecture on her book, Reading the Man: A Portrait of Robert E. Lee Through his Private Letters Since his death, researchers have lamented that Robert E. Lee never wrote a memoir. But, as author Elizabeth Brown Pryor revealed during her Banner Lecture at the VHS, this collection contains numerous letters and notes in the hand of Robert E. Lee reflecting on his long career. Pryor, who was granted access to selected portions of the collection found at Burke & Herbert Bank before processing at the Society began, spoke about her recently published book, Reading the Man: A Portrait of Robert E. Lee Through his Private Letters. In her book, Pryor explores the thoughts and actions of Robert E. Lee largely through his own words—some of which were derived from the newly released papers at the VHS—focusing on Lee's religious beliefs, his views on slavery, his father, his days at West Point, and his decision to join the South during the Civil War. (Introduction by Nelson D. Lankford)