Terry Jones, Historical Dictionary of the Civil War, vol. 1 (Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2002), 807.
The political crisis was also a personal dilemma for Lee. Although he opposed both secession and slavery (believing slavery harmed whites more than blacks) and loved the Union, Lee was loyal to Virginia above all else. Scott offered him command of the Union armies, but Lee refused the day after Virginia seceded and resigned his commission on April 20, 1861. Governor John Letcher quickly appointed him major general in command of state troops, two days before Lee’s resignation was accepted by the U.S. Army on April 25.