Lee after the war.
When the war closed he found himself far past middle age and compelled to depend upon his own efforts for his maintenance.
He had many offers from persons who desired to have the use of his name to promote their interests in business.
All of these he declined.
He had several invitations from wealthy admirers to accept their hospitality and pass the remainder of his days in repose.
These he also declined.
You know that finally he accepted the position of President
of Washington College, and in that dignified but useful retirement he closed his eventful life.
But he did not lose his desire to be of service not only to the people of the South
, but to the people of the whole country; and he set to work to use his great influence to reconcile the people of the South
to the hard consequences of their defeat, to inspire them with hope, to lead them to accept the government that had been established by the result of the war freely and frankly, and thus to relieve them from the military rule, and to relieve the people of the United States
from the evil effects of a continuance of such a form of government in any part of the country.