The Final Struggles: September 1864 to April 1865

Beginning of the End

When did Richmond fall?

On the morning of April 2, 1865, hundreds of well-to-do Richmonders were worshipping at St. Paul’s Church when a telegraph messenger entered. He went straight to Jefferson Davis, who rose from his pew and—with an ashen face—walked briskly out of the church and to the Confederate White House. Though he said nothing, the people at St. Paul’s guessed the worst: Lee’s lines around Petersburg had been broken by the Union forces.

An illustration from the book Richmond, Its People and Its Story shows the evacuation of Richmond, Virginia.


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