Through the winter and early spring of 1865, while Union armies ranged at will across the South, Richmond still glittered with the hard defiance of a city long at war. But this last flicker of resolve only made the city's fall all the more devastating. On the night of April 2, faced with the inevitability of Grant's triumph, Jefferson Davis and his cabinet fled, leaving Richmond to its fate-fire, capture, and the end of hope for a Southern nation. In this enthralling, meticulously researched book, Nelson Lankford draws on a treasure trove of diaries, letters, memoirs, and newspaper reports to create a narrative of novelistic immediacy. Here are unforgettable scenes of Abraham Lincoln's sailing up the James River to take possession of the Confederate White House and of Robert E. Lee's returning to Richmond to survey the still-smoldering ruins. Here too are vivid eyewitness accounts of the destruction of Richmond's commercial and governmental core, the hardships that its citizens, both black and white, suffered in the aftermath of the war, and the stubborn, sometimes violent resistance to reunification.
The first contemporary account of the last days of the Confederate capital, Richmond Burning is at once a superb work of history and a stunning piece of dramatic prose.
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Published August 5, 2002
by Viking Adult.