On May 4, 1865, Jefferson Davis arrived in Washington, Georgia (132 miles NE, where he performed what proved to be his last duties as President of the Confederate States of America. Shortly thereafter, with a small staff and escort, he departed enroute to the trans-Mississippi Department, from which vantage point he hoped to negotiate a just peace. Traveling via Warthen and Sandersville he reached the home of Mr. E. J. Blackshear (10 miles N of Dublin) early on May 7th, after finding his family camped nearby.
Stopping only for breakfast he pushed on — Mrs. Davis' party added to his — reaching Dublin (30 miles NE) about 11 o'clock. After securing supplies, he again pushed on. He camped near Alligator Creek (10 miles NE) and again four miles SE of Eastman (UDC marker at site), unaware that the 1st Wisconsin Cavalry [US] had learned of his passage through Dublin and had begun a pursuit.
After crossing the Ocmulgee River near Abbeville (20 miles SW), he camped a mile N of Irwinville (46 miles SW) in the present Jefferson Davis Memorial State Park. At dawn on May 10th, his camp was surrounded by men of the 1st Wisconsin and 4th Michigan cavalry regiments [US] and he became a "state prisoner," his hopes for a new nation, in which each state would exercise without interference its cherished "Constitutional Rights," forever dead.