Battle of Appomattox: Understanding General Lee's Surrender

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  • Source: Ammo.com
  • 08/02/2021

The Battle of Appomattox Courthouse is considered by many historians the end of the Civil War and the start of post-Civil War America. The events of General Robert E. Lee’s surrender to General and future President Ulysses S. Grant at a small town courthouse in Central Virginia put into effect much of what was to follow.

The surrender at Appomattox Courthouse was about reconciliation, healing, and restoring the Union. While the Radical Republicans had their mercifully brief time in the sun rubbing defeated Dixie’s nose in it, largely in response to the Southern "Black Codes," they represented the bleeding edge of Northern radicalism that wanted to punish the South, not reintegrate it into the Union as an equal partner.

The sentiment of actual Civil War veterans is far removed from the attitude of the far left in America today. Modern day “woke-Americans” clamor for the removal of Confederate statues in the South, the lion’s share of which were erected while Civil War veterans were still alive. There was little objection to these statues at the time because it was considered an important part of the national reconciliation to allow the defeated South to honor its wartime dead and because there is a longstanding tradition of memorializing defeated foes in honor cultures.

The Events of the Surrender at Appomattox Courthouse

 

Long story short, the Battle of Appomattox Courthouse was a last ditch effort by General Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia to meet up with the remaining Confederate forces to consolidate their efforts. The Greys failed and General Lee surrendered to Grant which effectively ended the war.

For ceremonial purposes, General Lee waited for General Grant in a white uniform. Grant, who suffered from migraines, noticed his headaches end once he and Lee had negotiated a ceasefire. Grant, in his magnanimity, allowed Lee to choose the place of his surrender – Lee famously chose the Appomattox Courthouse.
 

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