Lt. Gen. U.S. Grant’s Dispatch to the Secretary of War April 9, 1865

Headquarters Appomattox C.H. Va.,
April 9th, 1865, 4:30 p.m.

Hon. E.M. Stanton:
Secretary of War,
General Lee surrendered the Army of Northern Virginia this afternoon on terms proposed by myself. The accompanying additional correspondence will show the conditions fully.

U.S. Grant

2 Responses to Lt. Gen. U.S. Grant’s Dispatch to the Secretary of War April 9, 1865

  1. Somehow I could not locate the dispatch. Are you going to sum up the meaning of Robert E. Lee for American history? Most Americans have a concept of Lee that is not balanced and realistic. Will there be any attempt to digest Reconstruction? Again most of us are ignorant of its impact and relevance to today’s American scene.

    1. The dispatch is included with Grant’s memoirs. Summing up Lee in American History would take some additional thought and I think would be a great post as the 150ths draw to a close. In the near term, however, Lee’s surrender has an incredible impact on the Confederacy. His Army of Northern Virginia had become the soul of the Confederate cause and Lee, its heart. Although President Jefferson Davis wanted to continue fighting despite the loss of his principle army, Lee’s surrender was detrimental to the mindset of other members of the Confederate high command. It convinced them that further combat would be futile and it was time to begin negotiating their own terms of surrender. This mentality carried over to Gen. Joseph Johnston’s surrender in North Carolina at the end of April.

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