m. 13 APR 1782
Facts and Events
A gentleman of great fortune and talents, prolific writer, more distinguised perhaps than any young man in Virginia for excellence of various sorts. His genius, liberality, his devotion to his Mother's family and promise of eminence being great. He was convicted of crimes of the blackest dye.
He married a lady of quite some fortune and her sister lived with them, as Henry Lee had been named her guardian. He seduced her under circumstances too-too horible to mention and blackened with his disgrace everyone that bore his name.
The seduction of his young sister-in-law wrecked Henry Lee's career and made him a social outcast. Of the truth of this charge there is not the slightest question. In a lengthy letter preserved in the Library of Congress, Henry Lee not only admits his offense, but attempts justification. The girl was a member of his household at Stratford, and their constant association Henry evidently regards as sufficient excuse for his trangression.
It was through this Henry Lee that the Stratford estate was lost to the Lee family and passed to strangers. This misfortune was again the consequence of the man's relation with his wife's sister. For he was the girl's guardian, trustee of property left by her father. When Lee's ward became of age it was found that her entire inheritance had disappeared. Her representatives seized, as reparation, all Lee's available assets: the most valuable was the Stratford estate.