"ON TO RICHMOND" AT LAST!
The fall of the Confederacy -- In Richmond just after the evacuation -- A search for Confederate archives -- Lincoln's propositions to the Virginians -- A meeting with the Confederate Assistant Secretary of War -- Andrew Johnson turns up at Richmond -- His views as to the necessity of punishing rebels -- The first Sunday services at the Confederate capital under the old flag -- News of Lee's surrender reaches Richmond -- Back to Washington with Grant.
IT was evident to all of us, as the spring of 1865 came on, that the war was drawing to a close. Sherman was coming northward from his triumphant march to the sea, and would soon be in communication with Grant, who, ever since I left him in July, 1864, had been watching Petersburg and Richmond, where Lee's army was shut up. At the end of March Grant advanced. On April 1st Sheridan won the battle of Five Forks; then on April 2d came the successful assaults which drove Lee from Petersburg.
On the morning of April 3d, before I had left my house, Mr. Stanton sent for me to come immediately to the War Department. When I reached his office, he told me that Richmond had surrendered, and that he wanted me to go down at once to report the condition of affairs. I started as soon as I could get a steamboat, Roscoe Conkling and my son Paul accompanying me. We arrived at City Point early on April