ROBERT E. LEE BED USED AT WEST POINT 1852-1855 AS SUPERINTENDENT.
Robert E Lee was among the greatest American military officers. He was renowned among his West Point peers and later generations of West Pointers. Ironically in the 21st century, West Point has removed his portrait from library and is changing names of “Lee” Gate, “Lee” Road, “Lee” Hall, etc. In the 1920s Robert E. Lee was still renowned name for its current superintendent who was very proud to have been given the “Robert E. Lee” bed from last caretaker Frank Newland, superintendent of cadet stores for many years. His daughter, Miss Mary Newland was postmistress for many years, and she gave the bed to Mrs. Fred Sladen, who was current superintendent.
Only one person can brag that your guest room bed was slept on and owned by Robert E. Lee when West Point superintendent, this is you opportunity!
This 1850 vintage mahogany veneered spool bed up till last year was used as a guest bed at home of the last Fred Sladen, last male descendant of the Sladen military dynasty. The mahogany veneered bed is numbered “779” and stamped “ROBERT E. LEE BED / 1852 WEST POINT 1855 / NEWLANDS-SLADEN” on footboard. “Loach & Clarkes Patent” brass casters (patented 1841) are on each foot.
Part of letter concerning bed: “As you know, when Robert E Lee was assigned to the position of Superintendent of U.S. Military Academy in 1852 he arranged for some of his furniture to be transported to West Point from the Lee Mansion. After leaving his post as Superintendent in 1855, Robert E Lee gave a bed of his to Mr. Francis Newlands, Clerk of Headquarters, USMA. Upon Newlands’ death, Newland’s daughter, Mary Newlands, inherited the bed. Miss Newlands served as the postmistress of West Point from 1897 to 1923. My grandfather, Major General Fred W Sladen, class of 1890, was Tactics Instructor in 1901, Post Adjutant in 1903, Commandant of Cadets in 1911 and Superintendent of USMA in 1922. During the times my grandfather served at USMA my grandmother, Elizabeth L Sladen and Miss Newlands became good friends. When Miss Newlands retired from West Point, she gave the Lee bed to my grandmother, from whom I have (ultimately) inherited it.”
UNATTCHED ACCESSORIES: file of research & correspondence by Fred Sladen concerning the Robert E Lee bed. An inventory signed by Fred W Sladen lists furniture in home including front room, one spool bed, antique (Robert E Lee). CDV of Frank Newland, Superintendent of US Military Academy Cadet Stores who had possession of bed prior to Sladen.