Lincoln Witness 1865

Below you will find excerpts from some of the material that has recently come to me along with a short note about the sender and writer. Perhaps there is a treasured family story that speaks to Lincoln’s City Point visit that you can add. The Contact page explains how to reach me.

Virginia Memoir

A Virginia family preserved the recollection of their ancestor, who served in the 7th Rhode Island Regi­ment. The soldier was among those who entered captured Petersburg on April 3, 1865, and saw Lincoln during his visit:

“ was not long before we recognized the foremost man in the party was our beloved Abraham Lincoln. We rushed along the way to greet him and I never will forget the mournful smile that he gave us as he passed thro on his way to the city.”

Upstate New York Archive

A site visitor pointed me to a family collection in an upstate New York archive that contains a newspaper memoir written by a civilian who was standing nearby when U.S. Grant departed City Point for the battle lines on March 29, 1865, and Lincoln saw him off:

“Grant walked back and forth alone, and thoughtfully, near the head of the train. Mr. Lincoln stood in the midst of a little group near the rear steps of the single passenger car, chatting with all in his characteristic way.”

Ohio Letter

I was directed to the University of Chicago site by a visitor and found a letter from a member of the Christian Commission concerning Lincoln’s April 8 tour of the Depot Field Hospital:

“It was like the visit of a father to his children and was appreciated in the same kindly spirit by the soldiers. They loved to talk of his kindness and unaffected manner & to dwell upon the various incidents of this visit as a green spot in the soldier’s hard life.”