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Eastern armies when the spring campaign feats, merely said: "I am sorry I did not get this against Lee opened, but I have had a feeling news before we left the President. However, that it is better to let Lee's old antagonists I suppose he has heard of it by this time, give his army the final blow and finish up the and then added : “Let the news be circulated job single-handed.”
among the troops as rapidly as possible.” “I see, I see,” said Mr. Lincoln, “but I Grant and Meade both went into camp at never thought of it in that light. In fact my Sutherland's Station that evening, the 3d. The anxiety has been so great that I did n't care Army of the Potomac caught a few hours' where the help came from so the work was sleep, and at 3 the next morning was again perfectly done."
on the march. The pursuit had now become Mr. Lincoln then began to talk about the unflagging, relentless. Grant put a spur on civil complications that would follow the de- the heel of every dispatch he sent. Sheridan struction of the Confederate armies in the "the inevitable,” as the enemy had learned to field, and showed plainly the anxiety he felt call him, was in advance thundering along regarding the great problems in state-craft with his cavalry, followed by Griffin and the which would soon be thrust upon him. rest of the Army of the Potomac, while Ord
Meanwhile Tad, for whom he always showed was swinging along towards Burkeville to head great affection, was now becoming a little un- off Lee from Danville, to which point it was easy and gave certain appealing looks to which naturally supposed he was pushing in order a staff-officer responded by producing some to unite with Joe Johnston's army. The 4th sandwiches, which he offered to him, saying: was another active day; the troops found that “ Here, young man, I guess you must be hun- this campaign was to be won by legs, that the gry.” Tad seized them as a drowning man great walking match had begun, and success would seize a life-preserver, and cried out: depended upon which army could make the “Yes, I am, that 's what's the matter with me." best distance record. General Grant marched
but his loyal spirit never flagged, and his The general hoped that he would hear be- orders breathed the true spirit of the soldier. fore he parted with the President that Rich- That night General Grant camped at Wilson's mond was in our possession, but after the in- Station, on the South Side railroad twenty-seven terview had lasted about an hour and a half, miles west of Petersburg. On the 5th he the general said he must ride on to the front marched again with Ord's column, and at noon and join Ord's column, and took leave of the reached Nottaway Court House, about ten President who shook his hand cordially, and miles east of Burkeville, where he halted for with great warmth of feeling wished him God- a couple of hours. A young staff-officer here speed and every success.
rode up to General Ord, in a state of considerThe general and staff had ridden as far as able excitement, and said to him: “Is this a Sutherland's Station, about nine miles, when way-station ?” The grim old soldier, who ala dispatch from Weitzel overtook him, which ways went armed with a joke concealed somehad come by a roundabout way, announcing where about his person, replied with great dethe capture of Richmond at 8:15 that morn- liberation : “ This is Nott-a-way Station.” We ing. Although the news was expected, there continued to move along the road which runs were wild shouts of rejoicing from the group parallel to the South Side railroad till nearly who heard it read. The general, who never dark, and had reached a point about half-way
manifested the slightest sign of between Nottaway and Burkeville. The road
BASIN AND CAPITOL SQUARE.
(FROM A PHOTOGRAPH.)
the side towards the enemy. There was a ing the movements of the Army of the Potosudden commotion among the headquarters mac for the next day, and the latter changed escort, and on looking around I saw some of the proposed dispositions so as to have the our men dashing up to a horseman in full Con- army swing round towards the south, and enfederate uniform, who had suddenly appeared deavor to head off Lee in that direction. The in the road, and in the act of seizing him as a next day, the 6th, proved a decided field day in prisoner.
the pursuit. It was found in the morning that I recognized him at once as one of Sheri- Lee had retreated during the night from Amedan's scouts, who had before brought us im- lia Court House, and from the direction he had portant dispatches, and said to him: “How taken and from information received that he do you do, Campbell ? ” and told our men had ordered rations to meet him at Farmville, it he was all right and was one of our own was seen that he had abandoned all hope of people.
reaching Burkeville and was probably heading He informed us he had had a hard ride from for Lynchburg. Ord was to try to burn the Sheridan's camp, and had brought a dispatch High Bridge and push on to Farmville. Sherifor General Grant. By this time the general dan's cavalry was to work around on Lee's left had recognized him, and had stopped in the flank, and the Army of the Potomac was to road to see what he had brought. Campbell make another forced march and strike the then took from his mouth a wad of tobacco, enemy wherever it could reach him. broke it open, and pulled out a little ball of I spent a portion of the day with Humtin-foil. Rolled up in this was a sheet of tis- phreys's corps, which attacked the enemy near sue paper on which was written the famous Deatonsville, and gave his rear-guard no rest. dispatch so widely published at the time, in Joining General Grant later I rode with him which Sheridan described the situation at Jet- to Burkeville, getting there some time after ersville, and added: “I wish you were here dark. yourself."
Ord had pushed out to Rice's Station, and The general said he would go at once to Sheridan and Wright had gone in against the Sheridan, and dismounted from his black pony enemy and fought the battle of Sailor's Creek “Jeff Davis,” which he had been riding, and [east of Farmville, see map, page 143] capcalled for his big bay horse “ Cincinnati.” He turing six general officers and about seven stood in the road for a few minutes and wrote thousand men, and smashing things generally. a dispatch, using the pony's back for a desk, General Grant started from Burkeville early and then mounting the fresh horse, told Camp- the next morning, the 7th, and took the direct bell to lead the way. It was found we would road to Farmville. The columns were crowdhave to skirt pretty closely to the enemy's ing the roads, and the men, aroused to still lines, and it was thought prudent to take some greater efforts by the inspiring news of the day cavalry with us, but there was none near at before, were sweeping along, despite the rain hand, and the general said he would risk it with that fell, like trained pedestrians on a walkingour mounted escort of fourteen men. Calling track. As the general rode amongst them, he upon me and two or three other officers to ac- was greeted with shouts and hurrahs, on all company him, he started off. It was now af- sides, and a string of sly remarks, which showed ter dark, but there was enough moonlight to how familiar swords and bayonets become enable us to see the way without difficulty. when victory furnishes the topic of their After riding nearly twenty miles, following talk. cross-roads through a wooded country, we struck Sheridan's pickets about half-past 10 o'clock and soon after reached his headquarters.
Sheridan was awaiting the general-in-chief, thinking he would come after getting the dis- A LITTLE before noon on the 7th of April, patch; a good supper of coffee and cold 1865, General Grant with his staff rode into chicken had been spread out, and it was soon the little village of Farmville on the south side demonstrated that the night ride had not of the Appomattox River, a town which will impaired any one's appetite.
be memorable in history as the place in which When he had learned fully the situation in he opened the correspondence with Lee which Sheridan's front, General Grant first sent a led to the surrender of the Army of Northern message to Ord to watch the roads running Virginia. south from Burkeville and Farmville, and then He drew up in front of the village hotel, rode over to Meade's camp near by. Meade dismounted, and established headquarters on was still suffering from illness. His views dif- its broad piazza. News came in that Crook fered somewhat from General Grant's regard- was fighting large odds with his cavalry on
the north side of the river, and I was directed become a grand review, with Grant as the to go to his front and see what was necessary reviewing officer. to be done to assist him. I found that he was Ord and Gibbon had visited the general at being driven back, and the enemy was making the hotel, and he had spoken with them as well a bold stand north of the river. Humphreys as with Wright about sending some communiwas also on the north side, isolated from the cation to Lee which might pave the way to the rest of our infantry, confronted by a large por- stopping of further bloodshed. Dr. Smith, fortion of Lee's army, and having some very merly of the regular army, a native of Virginia heavy fighting. On my return to general head- and a relative of General Ewell, now one of quarters that night, Wright's corps was ordered our prisoners, had told General Grant the night to cross the river and move rapidly to the sup- before that Ewell had said in conversation that port of our troops there. Notwithstanding their their cause was lost when they crossed the long march that day, the men sprang to their James River, and he considered it the duty of feet with a spirit that made every one marvel the authorities to negotiate for peace then, at their pluck, and came swinging through while they still had a right to claim concesthe main street of the village, with a step sions, adding that now they were not in conthat seemed as elastic as on the first day of dition to claim anything. He said that for their toilsome tramp. It was now dark, but every man killed after this somebody would be they spied the general-in-chief watching them responsible, and it would be little better than with evident pride from the piazza of the murder. He could not tell what General Lee hotel.
would do, but he hoped he would at once Then was witnessed one of the most inspir- surrender his army. This statement, together ing scenes of the campaign. Bonfires were with the news which had been received from lighted on the sides of the street, the men Sheridan saying that he had heard that Genseized straw and pine knots, and improvised eral Lee's trains of provisions which had torches. Cheers arose from throats already come by rail were at Appomattox and that he hoarse with shouts of victory, bands played, expected to capture them before Lee could banners waved, arms were tossed high in reach them, induced the general to write the air and caught again. The night march had following communication :
HEADQUARTERS Armies OF THE U. S. the hotel. He said his regiment had crumbled
“5 P. M., April 7th, 1865. “GENERAL R. E. LEE, Commanding C. S. A.:
to pieces, he was the only man left in it, and “The results of the last week must convince you of he thought he might as well stop off at home. the hopelessness of further resistance on the part of His story was significant as indicating the the Army of Northern Virginia in this struggle. I feel disintegrating process which was going on in that it is so, and regard it as my duty to shift from my; the ranks of the enemy. self the responsibility of any further effusion of blood by asking of you the surrender of that portion of the
General Grant had been marching most of Confederate States army, known as the Army of North- the way with the columns which were pushing ern Virginia U. S. Grant, LIEUT.-GENERAL.” along south of Lee's line of retreat, but expect
ing that a reply would be sent to his last letter This he intrusted to General Seth Williams, and wanting to keep within easy communicaadjutant-general, with directions to take it to tion with Lee, he decided to march this day Humphreys's front, as his corps was close up with the portion of the Army of the Potomac; to the enemy's rear-guard, and have it sent which was pressing Lee's rear-guard. After into Lee's lines.
issuing some further instructions to Ord and The general decided to remain all night Sheridan, he started from Farmville, crossed to at Farmville and await the reply from Lee, and the north side of the Appomattox, conferred he was shown to a room in the hotel in which in person with Meade, and rode with his colhe was told Lee had slept the night before. umns. Encouraging reports came in all day,
Lee wrote the following reply within an and that night headquarters were established hour after he received General Grant's letter, at Curdsville in a large white farm-house, a but it was brought in by rather a circuitous few hundred yards from Meade's camp. The route and did not reach its destination till general and several of the staff had cut loose after midnight:
from the headquarters trains the night he
“ April 7th, 1865. started to meet Sheridan at Jetersville, and had “GENERAL: I have received your note of this date. neither baggage nor camp equipage. The genThough not entertaining the opinion you express of the eral did not even have his sword with him. hopelessness of further resistance on the part of the Army of Northern Virginia, I reciprocate your desire This was the most advanced effort yet made to avoid useless effusion of blood, and therefore, before at moving in “light marching order," and we considering your proposition, ask the terms you will billeted ourselves at night in farm-houses, or offer on conditions of its surrender.
bivouacked on porches, and picked up meals “R. E. LEE, GENERAL. “ LIEUT.-GENERAL U. S. GRANT,
at any camp that seemed to have something to “Commanding Armies of the U. S.”
spare in the way of rations. This night we
The next morning before leaving Farmville the general wrote the following reply, and General Williams again started for Humphreys's front to have the letter transmitted to Lee:
“ April 8th, 1865. “GENERALR. E. Lee, Commanding C. S. A.:
“ Your note of last evening in reply to mine of the same date, asking the conditions on which I will accept the surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia, is just received. In reply I would say that, peace being my great desire, there is but one condition Í would insist upon,- namely, that the men and officers surrendered shall be disquali. fied for taking up arms against the Government of the United States until properly exchanged. I will meet you, or will designate officers to meet any officers you may name for the same purpose, at any point agreeable to you, for the purpose of arranging definitely the terms upon which the surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia will be received.
“U. S. GRANT, Lieut.-GENERAL.”
There turned up at this time a rather hungry-looking gentleman in gray, in the uniform of a colonel, who proclaimed himself the proprietor of
THE RETREAT FROM PETERSBURG - CONFEDERATES GRATING AND
(BY W. L. SHEPPARD, WHO OBSERVED THE INCIDENT.)
sampled the fare of Meade's hospitable mess Army of Northern Virginia; but as far as your proand once more lay down with full stomachs.
posal may affect the Confederate States forces under General Grant had been suffering all the af- my command, and tend to the restoration of peace, I
should be pleased to meet you at 10 A. M. to-morrow ternoon from a severe headache, the result of on the old stage road to Richmond, between the picketfatigue, anxiety, scant fare, and loss of sleep, lines of the two armies. R. E. LEE, GENERAL. and by night it was much worse. He had been
“LIEUT.-GENERAL U. S. GRANT." induced to bathe his feet in hot water and mus- General Grant had been able to get but very tard, and apply mustard plasters to his wrists little sleep. He now sat up and read the letter, and the back of his neck, but these remedies and after making a few comments upon it to afforded little relief. The dwelling we occu- General Rawlins, lay down again on the sofa. pied was a double house. The general threw About 4 o'clock in the morning of the gth,
CAPTURE OF GUNS AND THE DESTRUCTION OF A CONFEDERATE WAGON-TRAIN AT PAINEVILLE, APRIL 5TH, BY DAVIES'S CAVALRY
BRIGADE OF CROOK'S DIVISION. (BY A. R. WAUD, AFTER HIS SKETCH MADE AT THE TIME.) The wagon-train was escorted by Gary's cavalry with five guns. General Humphreys, in " The Virginia Campaign of '64 and '65" (Charles Scribner's Sons), says it is believed that the papers of General Robert E. Lee's headquarters, containing
many valuable reports, copies of but few of which are now to be found, were destroyed by the burning of these wagons.'
himself upon a sofa in the sitting-room on the I got up and crossed the hall to ascertain how left side of the hall, while the staff-officers the general was feeling. I found his room bunked on the floor of the room opposite empty, and upon going out of the front door to catch what sleep they could. About mid- saw him pacing up and down in the yard holdnight we were aroused by Colonel Whittier ing both hands to his head. Upon inquirof Humphreys's staff, who brought another ing how he felt, he replied that he had had letter from General Lee. General Rawlins at very little sleep and was still suffering the once took it in to General Grant's room. It most excruciating pain. I said: “Well, there was as follows:
is one consolation in all this, general : I never
“ April 8th, 1865. knew you to be ill that you did not receive “GENERAL: I received at a late hour your note of to
some good news.
I have become a little suday. In mine of yesterday I did not intend to propose the surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia, but perstitious regarding these coincidences, and to ask the terms of your proposition. To be frank, I I should not be surprised if some good fordo not think the emergency has arisen to call for the tune overtook you before night.” He smiled surrender of this army, but as the restoration of peace and said: “The best thing that can happen should be the sole object of all, I desired to know whether your proposals would lead to that end. I can to meto-day is to get rid of the pain I am suffernot, therefore, meet you with a view to surrender the ing.” We were now joined by some others of