Appomattox

Where we are and where we have been:

After our adventures on the Blue Ridge Parkway, we pulled in for the night at a KOA between Statesville and Winston/Salem, NC.  This one would be a great place for a family vacation, destination point (not something that I would say about any other KOA that I have seen)  It had a good size fishing pond in the back, a nice swimming pool and several other amenities, but we were just there to recoup and move on the next day. 

We crossed into Virginia at Dansville and began to find a little bit of sunshine, our day ended at Appomattox, the town where Lee surrendered to Grant to end the Civil War.  Our camp is just outside the Appomattox Courthouse National Park. We enjoyed a visit to the park as well as a new Museum of the Confederacy.

 Appomattox Courthouse is the name of the village, not just a building. The park is comprised of several building of old Appomattox courthouse, the courthouse, a general store, a law office and the McLean house.  Some are reconstructed, others preserved.  The McLean House was where General Robert E. Lee surrendered to Lieutenant General Ulysses S. Grant, on Palm Sunday April 9, 1865, effectively bringing the war to an end.

A tintype of the signing:

This house was built in 1848 and sold to Wilmer McLean, a retired Virginia militia major, in 1863. One of the first battles of the Civil War took place on the farm of Wilmer McLean at Bull Run, Virginia, the First Battle of Bull Run, July 21, 1861. Soon after that battle the McLeans, seeking to avoid the war, moved to the village of Appomattox Court House, the county seat.  (Once the ceremony was over, members of the Army of the Potomac began taking the tables, chairs, and various other furnishings in the house—essentially, anything that was not tied down—as souvenirs.]

It is said that because the First Battle of Bull Run took place on McLean’s farm and the surrender happened at his house, that the Civil War started in McLean’s backyard and ended in his parlor.

The Mclean House:

The Courthouse:

The Mercantile and Law Office:

Another house in the village:

The Appomattox Confederate Cemetery (Eighteen Confederate soldiers who died April 8 &9 in the last battles in Virginia.

I found some of quotes that I thought revealing about these generals:

  • “This war is not about slavery.”
  • “The education of a man is never completed until he dies.”
  • “In all my perplexities and distresses, the Bible has never failed to give me light and strength.”
  • “Get correct views of life, and learn to see the world in its true light. It will enable you to live pleasantly, to do good, and, when summoned away, to leave without regret.”

by Robert E. Lee







  • “The Southern rebellion was largely the outgrowth of the Mexican war. Nations, like individuals, are punished for their transgressions. We got our punishment in the most sanguinary and expensive war of modern times. “
  • “Hold fast to the Bible. To the influence of this Book we are indebted for all the progress made in true civilization and to this we must look as our guide in the future.”

by Ulysses S. Grant

 





 

Quotes from history about them:

  • “[Lee was] a leader of men in war and peace, a champion of principles, a humanitarian, a man who devoted his entire life to the benefit of others without regard to himself.   — Woodrow Wilson
  • “It is enough to add that he was a very good General and a very bad President.”    Christopher Hollis, on U. S. Grant’s taking, “on reaching the presidency”

 

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One Response to Appomattox

  1. Celeste says:

    MNM loves the pic of the ducks. She wants you to post more like that!