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Southern Historical Society Papers, Volume 5. (ed. Reverend J. William Jones), The true story of the capture of Jefferson Davis. (search)
eparation for removal of the archives of the government in such case may have existed during all that period; but no expectation of the necessity for an early evacuation had been entertained until Gen. Lee's telegram of the 2d April was received. General Lee himself had expected to be able to hold his position at Petersburg at least until the roads were hardened, (to use his own expression,) and continued to entertain that hope until his attenuated lines were broken at Five Forks, on the 1st of April; nor did he anticipate, in leaving Petersburg, the series of disasters which compelled the surrender of his army, within a week afterward, under circumstances which made the surrender more illustrious than the conquest. As to the charge that President Davis was preparing for flight from the country, there is not even the pretence of any evidence to support it. It is a mere calumny, without any basis of truth whatever. The only proposition of that sort of which we have any evidence, pr