HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI,
In the Field, Raleigh, N. C., April 18, 1865.
Lieutenant General U. S. GRANT or
Washington, D. C.:
GENERAL: I inclose herewith a copy of an agreement made this day between General Joseph E. Johnston and myself, which, if approved by the President of the United States, will produce peace from the Potomac and the Rio Grande. Mr. Breckinridge was present at our conference in his capacity as major-general, and satisfied me of the ability of General Johnston to carry out to the full extent the terms of this agreement, and if you will get the President to simply indorse the copy and commission me to carry out the terms, I will follow them to the conclusion. You will observe that it is an absolute submission of the enemy to the lawful authority of the United States, and dispersed his armies absolutely, and the point to which I attach most importance is that the dispersion and disbandment of these armies is done in such a manner as to prevent their breaking up into guerrilla bands. On the other hand, we can retain just as much of an army as we please. I agreed to toe mode and manner of the surrender of arms set forth, as it gives the States the means of repressing guerrillas, which we could not expect them to do if we stripped them of all arms. Both Generals Johnston and Breckinridge admitted that slavely was dead, and I could not insist on embracing it in such a paper, because it can be made with the states in detail. I know that all the men of substance South sincerely want peace, and I do not believe they will resort to war again during this century. I have no doubt that they will in the future be perfectly subordinate to the laws of the United States. The moment my action in this matter if approved I can spare five corps, and will ask for orders to leave General Schofield here with the Tenth Corps, and to march myself with the Fourteenth, Fifteenth, Sixteenth, Twentieth, and Twenty-third Corps, via Burkevill and Gordonsville, to Frederick or Hagerstown, there to be paid and mustered out. The question of finance is now the chief one, and every soldier and officer not needed should be got home at work. I would like to be able to begin the march north by May 1. I urge on the part of the President speedy action, as it is important to get the Confederate armies to their homes as well as our own.
I am, with great respect, your obedient servant,
W. T. SHERMAN,
[Inclosure Numbers 1.]
Memorandum or basis of agreement made this 18th day of April, A. D. 1865, near Durham's Station, in the State of North Carolina, by and between General Joseph E. Johnston, commanding the Confederate army, and Major General William T. Sherman, commanding the army of the United States in North carolina, both present.
First. The contending armies now in the field to maintain the status quo until notice is given by the commanding general of any one to its opponent, and reasonable time, say forty-eight hours, allowed.
Second. The Confederate armies now in existence to be disbanded and conducted to their several State capitals, there to deposit their arms and public property in the State arsenal, and each officer and man to execute and file an agreement to cease from acts of war and to abide the action of both State and Federal authority. The number of arms and