Lincoln In Petersburg

Lincoln In Petersburg (HMWT1)

Location: Petersburg, VA 23803
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Country: United States of America
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N 37° 13.825', W 77° 24.075'

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Presidential Visit to Centre Hill

At noon on April 7, 1865, President Abraham Lincoln and his party left City Point for Petersburg in a special train on the newly repaired City Point Railroad, arriving in the city half an hour later. His wife, Mary Todd Lincoln, and their young son, Tad, accompanied him, as well as Mrs. Lincoln's dressmaker and confidante, Elizabeth Keckley, who had been a slave in Petersburg. Sen. Charles Sumner of Massachusetts, one of Lincoln's closest friends, and Adm. David Porter completed the party. They eventually arrived here at Centre Hill, headquarters for the commanding officer of the Petersburg garrison, Union Gen. George L. Hartsuff. While a staff officer gave the others a tour of the house, Lincoln and Hartsuff discussed the temper of Petersburg's white population. This conversation probably occurred in the study, off the stair hall.

Hartsuff told Lincoln that he might rent Centre Hill from its owners, Robert Buckner Bolling and his wife, who were still at a country place they owned in northern Virginia. Lincoln stared at the shell-torn walls and quipped that Federal batteries had "made rent enough here already."

While on the train back to City Point, Lincoln shared Hartsuff's encouraging opinion that "animosity in the town is abating," and that "the inhabitants now accept as accomplished facts, the final downfall of the Confederacy, and the abolition of slavery. ?[and] every day brings new reason for confidence in the future." Eight days later, the outlook for the nation suddenly darkened as Lincoln lay dying in Washington, Sumner holding his hand.

In March 1865, Union Gen. Ulysses S. Grant invited President Abraham Lincoln to visit him at City Point for a respite from the capital as the 9½-month-Iong siege of Petersburg neared its end. Lincoln joined him on March 24. They held meetings, reviewed the army, and toured fortifications. On April 3, the day the Federals occupied Richmond and Petersburg, Lincoln and Grant held their last meeting in Petersburg. Lincoln visited Richmond the next day. He returned to Washington on April 9 as Grant accepted the surrender of Gen. Robert E. Lee's army at Appomattox Court House.
HM NumberHMWT1
Series This marker is part of the Virginia Civil War Trails series
Placed ByVirginia Civil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, September 25th, 2014 at 3:15am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 286975 N 4123135
Decimal Degrees37.23041667, -77.40125000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 37° 13.825', W 77° 24.075'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds37° 13' 49.50" N, 77° 24' 4.50" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)804, 434, 757
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 66 Centre Hill Ct, Petersburg VA 23803, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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