Editors. “1865 – President Lincoln meets with Ulysses S. Grant and William T. Sherman at City Point, Virginia, to plot the last stages of the war.” This Day in U.S. Military History. N.d. https://thisdayinusmilhist.wordpress.com/2014/03/27/march-27/. Accessed 26 Mar 2015.
1865 – President Lincoln meets with Ulysses S. Grant and William T. Sherman at City Point, Virginia, to plot the last stages of the war. Lincoln came to Virginia just as Grant was preparing to attack Confederate General Robert E. Lee’s lines around Petersburg and Richmond, an assault that promised to end the siege that had dragged on for 10 months. Meanwhile, Sherman’s force was steamrolling northward through the Carolinas. The three architects of Union victory met for the first time as a group–Sherman and Lincoln had never met–to plot the final destruction of the Confederacy. Lincoln came to Grant’s headquarters at City Point at the general-in-chief’s request. Lincoln boarded the River Queen with his wife Mary and son Tad on March 23, and the first family had a hectic visit. Lincoln went to the Petersburg lines and witnessed a Union bombardment and a small skirmish. He also reviewed troops, visited wounded soldiers, and then met with Grant and Sherman. Sherman had traveled from Goldsboro, North Carolina, to the coast before catching a steamer to Virginia. During the meeting, Lincoln expressed his concern that that Confederate armies might slip away. He was worried that Lee might escape Petersburg and flee to North Carolina, where he could join forces with Joseph Johnston to forge a new Confederate army that could continue the war for months. Grant and Sherman confidently assured the president that the end was in sight. Lincoln emphasized to his generals that any surrender terms must preserve the Union war aims of emancipation and a pledge of equality for the freed slaves. After meeting the next day with Admiral David Dixon Porter, the three went their separate ways. In less than four weeks, Grant and Sherman had secured the surrender of the Confederacy.