[Lee’s Retreat, Part 2]
The Appomattox Campaign: Lee’s Retreat from Cumberland Church to Appomattox,
April 7-12, 1865
(Friday and Saturday)
Historian: Patrick Schroeder
Description: (Limited/Less Walking) After a bus ride from Richmond to Farmville, the first stop of the tour will be at Cumberland Church battlefield. Here the Army of Northern Virginia entrenched on April 7, and held off Federal infantry and cavalry. At this site, Lee received the first letter from Grant requesting his surrender. The second Stop will be at Clifton—Grant’s HQ on the night of April 8, where he receive the response from his second letter to Lee. The third stop will be the newly developed Appomattox Station battlefield originally purchased by Civil War Trust and now run by the Appomattox 1865 Foundation. This April 8, 1865, engagement pitted Federal General George A. Custer’s cavalry division against Confederate General Rueben L. Walker’s reserve artillery. The fight was unique in many aspects and a key element to trapping the Army of Northern Virginia, leading to its surrender the next day. (Lunch) The fourth stop will include details of General Gordon’s April 9th morning breakout attack and a visit to the Confederate Cemetery, the final resting place for some of the war’s final victims. The final stop will be in the village itself where the group will tour the Visitor Center Museum, the McLean House where the surrender occurred, the Clover Hill Tavern where the parole passes were printed for the Confederate soldiers to return home, the Lee-Grant April 10 meeting site and the stacking of arms/salute site. Several Civil War Trust properties will also be pointed out from the village and the events that took place on them discussed. If there is time, a final stop will be made at the Robertson House site where the last fighting between Federal and Confederate cavalry engaged producing the last casualties and fatalities at Appomattox.
Tour Stops: Cumberland Church Battlefield, Clifton (Grant’s HQ April 8), Appomattox Station Battlefield, Appomattox Court House.