Robert E Lee surrenders

On 9 April 1865, Confederate horseman R.M. Sims waved a white towel of truce as he approached the men of the 118th Pennsylvania Infantry. He carried a message from Robert E. Lee requesting negotiations for surrender. General George Armstrong Custer sent him back with a reply: “We will listen to no terms but that of unconditional surrender.”

Eventually Lee met with General Ulysses S. Grant. Grant proposed that the Confederates should be allowed to keep their own horses and return to their homes after laying down their arms, and also agreed to supply rations to the hungry men. Lee agreed and he and his men signed an agreement stating “…we will not hereafter serve in the armies of the Confederate States or in any military capacity whatever, against the United States of America…”