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Why do people leave coins at Traveller's grave?
By Cynthia Kirkeby
Jun 19, 2007, 19:04

What is the significance of coins left on the grave of Robert E. Lee's horse, Traveller?

(Don't you find it ironic that most are LINCOLN pennies?)




General Lee on Traveller from New Student's Reference Work archived in the Creative Commons


There was no information on the Internet about this tradition. I had to contact the Lee Chapel and Museum to find out the answer. Here's what the site manager, Linda Donald told us:
"This custom has no recorded information. Our Director says that the coins are simply a matter of people leaving something at the burial site of an icon. However, I grew up in Lexington and was taught that Traveller was to be provided for and was never to be without. It is my belief that people leave the coins so that Traveller's every need can be met.

Whichever interpretation you choose, you must admit that Traveller is the most revered horse in the nation's history. In addition to the apples and carrots you mention, I have also witnessed wreaths made from wheat and other grains. It is fascinating what visitors think of to honor Lee's trusted companion."

I personally like the idea that people are caring for Traveller.

Thanks for asking such an interesting question. Sometimes the answers are absolutely fascinating.

Cynthia Kirkeby ASK ClassBrain

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