Robert E. Lee's chair from Appomattox

Description
On April 9, 1865, General Ulysses S. Grant and General Robert E. Lee met in the home of Wilmer McLean at Appomattox Court House, Virginia, to negotiate the surrender of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia to the United States Army. Sitting in the chair on the left, Lee discussed the fate of his troops. Grant then, leaning over an oval table, drafted and signed the final terms of surrender. While there were still Confederate troops in the field under other commanders, Lee's surrender effectively marked the end of the Civil War.
Union officers, recognizing the significance of the event, individually took pieces of furniture as souvenirs. General E. W. Whitaker grabbed Lee's chair, General Henry Capehart claimed Grant's chair, and General Philip Sheridan took the table and presented it to the wife of Major General George Amstrong Custer. In three separate donations, by 1915, these items were reunited at the Smithsonian Institution.
Object Name
chair
Date made
before 1865
associated date
1865-04-09
user
Lee, Robert Edward
Physical Description
wood (overall material)
Measurements
overall: 45 1/2 in x 18 1/2 in x 20 in; 115.57 cm x 46.99 cm x 50.8 cm
used
United States: Virginia, Appomattox Court House National Historical Park
associated place
United States: Virginia, Appomattox
ID Number
PL*015820
catalog number
15820
accession number
59140
catalog number
15820
subject
Government, Politics, and Reform
Military
National Treasures exhibit
event
Civil War
See more items in
Political History: Political History, General History Collection
National Treasures exhibit
Exhibition
The Price of Freedom
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Related Publication
Kendrick, Kathleen M. and Peter C. Liebhold. Smithsonian Treasures of American History
Publication title
Treasures of American History online exhibition
Publication author
National Museum of American History
Publication URL
http://americanhistory.si.edu/treasures

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