To the Bitter End: Appomattox, Bennett Place, and the Surrenders of the Confederacy

To the Bitter End: Appomattox, Bennett Place, and the Surrenders of the Confederacy

by Robert M. Dunkerly


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Across the Confederacy, determination remained high through the winter of 1864 into the new year—yet ominous signs were everywhere. The peace conference had failed. Large areas were overrun, the armies could not stop Union advances, the economy was in shambles, and industry and infrastructure were crumbling. The Confederacy could not make, move, or maintain anything. No one knew what the future held but uncertainty.

Civilians and soldiers, generals and governors, resolved to fight to the bitter end.

Myths and misconceptions abound about those last days of the Confederacy. There would be no single surrender or treaty that brought the war to an end. Rather, the Confederacy collapsed, its government on the run, its cities occupied, its armies surrendering piecemeal.

Offering a fresh look at the various surrenders that ended the war, To the Bitter End: Appomattox, Bennett Place, and the Surrenders of the Confederacy by Robert M. Dunkerly brings to light little-known facts and covers often-overlooked events. Each surrender—starting at Appomattox and continuing through Greensboro, Citronelle, and the Trans-Mississippi—unfolded on its own course. Many involved confusing and chaotic twists and turns.

Misunderstandings plagued many of the negotiations. Communications were problematic. Discipline often broke down. Tempers flared. It was anything but a nice, neat ending to the war.

How did the war finally end? What was the status of former Confederate soldiers? Of slaves? How would everyone get home? Was there even a home to go to? As the surrenders unfolded, daunting questions remained.

Appomattox was just the beginning.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781611212525
Publisher: Savas Beatie
Publication date: 04/19/2015
Series: Emerging Civil War Series
Pages: 192
Sales rank: 593,305
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

Robert M. Dunkerly is a historian, award-winning author, and speaker who is actively involved in historic preservation and research. He works as a park ranger at Richmond National Battlefield Park. Among his several books are two in the ECW Series: To the Bitter End: Appomattox, Bennett Place, and the Surrenders of the Confederacy and No Turning Back: A Guide to the 1864 Overland Campaign.

Table of Contents

Author's Note v

Acknowledgments viii

Prologue: Valor Alone xi

Chapter 1 The Grueling Road West 1

Chapter 2 The Last Charge 13

Chapter 3 Mr. McLean's Parlor 21

Chapter 4 On the Stage Road 29

Chapter 5 Retreat Through Raleigh 39

Chapter 6 Mr. Bennett's Parlor 49

Chapter 7 Confusion and Unrest 55

Chapter 8 Descending Into Chaos 63

Chapter 9 The Fall of Mobile 73

Chapter 10 Mr. Magee's Parlor 83

Chapter 11 Under the Spreading Oak 93

Chapter 12 Chaos in the Trans-Mississippi 101

Chapter 13 Galveston Harbor 109

Chapter 14 The End in Arkansas 121

Chapter 15 The Nations Negotiate 129

Chapter 16 The Surrender and Memory 137

Appendix A The Surrenders at a Glance 147

Appendix B The USCTs in the Appomattox Campaign Christopher Bingham 149

Appendix G The Long Road Home from Appomattox Ernie K. Price 153

Appendix D The Last Act: The Surrender of the C.S.S. Shenandoah Christopher L. Kolakowski 157

Appendix E The Lost Generation Shannon Moeck 163

Afterword: "With Malice Toward None" Chris Mackowsh 167

Suggested Reading 170

About the Author 174

List of Maps

Maps Hal Jespersen

Appomattox Campaign 2

Appomattox Positions at the Time of the Flag of Truce 22

North Carolina Area of Operations 40

Confederate Camps 56

Escape Route of Jefferson Davis 64

Department of Alabama, Mississippi, and East Louisiana 74

Department of the Trans-Mississippi 102

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