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Robert E. Lee (search for this): chapter 65
t have artillery brought up, because I was sure Lee was trying to make his escape, and I wanted to f the Appomattox for the purpose of heading off Lee; but Meade was so much impressed by this man's e against Lee in his new position. I knew that Lee was no fool, as he would have been to have put deceive your antagonist. My judgment was that Lee would necessarily have to evacuate Richmond, anect was to secure a point on that road south of Lee, and I told Meade this. He suggested that if Lhat long. Davis was at church when he received Lee's dispatch. The congregation was dismissed witupon the field, operating against Richmond and Lee, the credit would be given to them for the captcuation the people had been led to believe that Lee had gained an important victory somewhere arounmmand found evidence of great demoralization in Lee's army, there being still a great many men and s. On the morning of the 4th I learned that Lee had ordered rations up from Danville for his fa[11 more...]
Abraham Lincoln (search for this): chapter 65
The capture of Petersburg-meeting President Lincoln in Petersburg-the capture of Richmond --pursuing the eneorm to the gauge of our cars and locomotives. Mr. Lincoln was at City Point at the time, and had been for sng after the capture of Petersburg, I telegraphed Mr. Lincoln asking him to ride out there and see me, while I President arrived. About the first thing that Mr. Lincoln said to me, after warm congratulations for the vid with him frequently and fully by telegraph. Mr. Lincoln knew that it had been arranged for Sherman to joiure the only army they had been engaged with. Mr. Lincoln said he saw that now, but had never thought of it advance. When our conversation was at an end Mr. Lincoln mounted his horse and started on his return to Cithe capture of Richmond. Soon after I left President Lincoln I received a dispatch from General Weitzel whially they took water and crossed over. I left Mr. Lincoln and started, as I have already said, to join the
Charles Griffin (search for this): chapter 65
nd sent his troops out to collect forage. The country was very poor and afforded but very little. His foragers scattered a great deal; many of them were picked up by our men, and many others never returned to the Army of Northern Virginia. Griffin's corps was intrenched across the railroad south of Jetersville, and Sheridan notified me of the situation. I again ordered Meade up with all dispatch, Sheridan having but the one corps of infantry with a little cavalry confronting Lee's entired of Humphrey's corps followed in about an hour afterwards. Sheridan stationed the troops as they came up, at Meade's request, the latter still being very sick. He extended two divisions of this corps off to the west of the road to the left of Griffin's corps, and one division to the right. The cavalry by this time had also come up, and they were put still farther off to the left, Sheridan feeling certain that there lay the route by which the enemy intended to escape. He wanted to attack, f
W. T. Sherman (search for this): chapter 65
vening service. The rebel government left Richmond about two o'clock in the afternoon of the 2d. At night Lee ordered his troops to assemble at Amelia Court House, his object being to get away, join Johnston if possible, and to try to crush Sherman before I could get there. As soon as I was sure of this I notified Sheridan and directed him to move out on the Danville Railroad to the south side of the Appomattox River as speedily as possible. He replied that he already had some of his combject in concealing from the President all my movements, and the objects I had in view. He remained for some days near City Point, and I communicated with him frequently and fully by telegraph. Mr. Lincoln knew that it had been arranged for Sherman to join me at a fixed time, to co-operate in the destruction of Lee's army. I told him that I had been very anxious to have the Eastern armies vanquish their old enemy who had so long resisted all their repeated and gallant attempts to subdue t
Wesley Merritt (search for this): chapter 65
d by the reflection that at last they were following up a victory to its end, that they preferred marching without rations to running a possible risk of letting the enemy elude them. So the march was resumed at three o'clock in the morning. Merritt's cavalry had struck the enemy at Deep Creek, and driven them north to the Appomattox, where, I presume, most of them were forced to cross. On the morning of the 4th I learned that Lee had ordered rations up from Danville for his famishing a had it forwarded from there. In the meantime, however, dispatches from other sources had reached Danville, and they knew there that our army was on the line of the road; so that they sent no further supplies from that quarter. At this time Merritt and Mackenzie, with the cavalry, were off between the road which the Army of the Potomac was marching on and the Appomattox River, and were attacking the enemy in flank. They picked up a great many prisoners and forced the abandonment of some p
Jefferson Davis (search for this): chapter 65
engineer officer. I had held most of the command aloof from the intrenchments, so as to start them out on the Danville Road early in the morning, supposing that Lee would be gone during the night. During the night I strengthened Sheridan by sending him Humphreys's corps. Lee, as we now know, had advised the authorities at Richmond, during the day, of the condition of affairs, and told them it would be impossible for him to hold out longer than night, if he could hold out that long. Davis was at church when he received Lee's dispatch. The congregation was dismissed with the notice that there would be no evening service. The rebel government left Richmond about two o'clock in the afternoon of the 2d. At night Lee ordered his troops to assemble at Amelia Court House, his object being to get away, join Johnston if possible, and to try to crush Sherman before I could get there. As soon as I was sure of this I notified Sheridan and directed him to move out on the Danville R
B. G. Humphreys (search for this): chapter 65
t them out on the Danville Road early in the morning, supposing that Lee would be gone during the night. During the night I strengthened Sheridan by sending him Humphreys's corps. Lee, as we now know, had advised the authorities at Richmond, during the day, of the condition of affairs, and told them it would be impossible for letting his men go into bivouac and trying to get up some rations for them, and clearing out the road, so that when they did start they would be uninterrupted. Humphreys, who was far ahead, was also out of rations. They did not succeed in getting them up through the night; but the Army of the Potomac, officers and men, were so e Lee's entire army. Meade, always prompt in obeying orders, now pushed forward with great energy, although he was himself sick and hardly able to be out of bed. Humphreys moved at two, and Wright at three o'clock in the morning, without rations, as I have said, the wagons being far in the rear. I stayed that night at Wilson's
possession of Jetersville and in the telegraph office, they found a dispatch from Lee, ordering two hundred thousand rations from Danville. The dispatch had not been sent, but Sheridan sent a special messenger with it to Burkesville and had it forwarded from there. In the meantime, however, dispatches from other sources had reached Danville, and they knew there that our army was on the line of the road; so that they sent no further supplies from that quarter. At this time Merritt and Mackenzie, with the cavalry, were off between the road which the Army of the Potomac was marching on and the Appomattox River, and were attacking the enemy in flank. They picked up a great many prisoners and forced the abandonment of some property. Lee intrenched himself at Amelia Court House, and also his advance north of Jetersville, and sent his troops out to collect forage. The country was very poor and afforded but very little. His foragers scattered a great deal; many of them were picke
Richard Taylor (search for this): chapter 65
ft, Sheridan feeling certain that there lay the route by which the enemy intended to escape. He wanted to attack, feeling that if time was given, the enemy would get away; but Meade prevented this, preferring to wait till his troops were all up. At this juncture Sheridan sent me a letter which had been handed to him by a colored man, with a note from himself saying that he wished I was there myself. The letter was dated Amelia Court House, April 5th, and signed by Colonel [William B.] Taylor. It was to his mother, and showed the demoralization of the Confederate army. Sheridan's note also gave me the information as here related of the movements of that day. I received a second message from Sheridan on the 5th, in which he urged more emphatically the importance of my presence. This was brought to me by a scout in gray uniform. It was written on tissue paper, and wrapped up in tin-foil such as chewing tobacco is folded in. This was a precaution taken so that if the scout shoul
He also captured five pieces of artillery. The Confederate infantry then moved against him and probably would have handled him very roughly, but Sheridan had sent two more brigades of cavalry to follow Davies, and they came to his relief in time. A sharp engagement took place between these three brigades of cavalry and the enemy's infantry, but the latter was repulsed. Meade himself reached Jetersville about two o'clock in the afternoon, but in advance of all his troops. The head of Humphrey's corps followed in about an hour afterwards. Sheridan stationed the troops as they came up, at Meade's request, the latter still being very sick. He extended two divisions of this corps off to the west of the road to the left of Griffin's corps, and one division to the right. The cavalry by this time had also come up, and they were put still farther off to the left, Sheridan feeling certain that there lay the route by which the enemy intended to escape. He wanted to attack, feeling tha
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