Total War: March to September 1864

The Man of the Hour

What did Lincoln and Grant say to one another?

When they met—for the first time ever—Lincoln extended his hand and practically boomed: “So this is General Grant. What a pleasure.” Grant, by contrast, was rather quiet, but he could not help but be the most admired, even adored, man in the room. Fame had caught up with him.

Later that week, when they sat together for two hours, Lincoln explained to his newest and highest-ranking general that he did not need to know the specifics or details of Grant’s campaign. What he wanted was to know that Grant would pursue his objectives untiringly and that he would call upon Lincoln for anything and everything he might need (within reason). Pleased and perhaps surprised, Grant agreed with the president that the primary consideration was the Confederate armies. There was little point in fighting an aggressive war if all they did was gain territory: the Confederate forces had to be destroyed.


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