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The Confederate Government evacuates its capital of Richmond, hours before victorious Union troops march in

Confederate Capitol, Richmond, Virginia, 1865, zoomable image
04/02/1865
With overwhelming Union action battering his army, Confederate General Robert E. Lee telegraphed his government in Richmond that the city must be immediately abandoned. During the day, hasty preparations ended with the 11 p.m. departure of President Jefferson Davis and his Cabinet by train for Danville, Virginia. Behind them, Richmond was in chaos. Mobs roamed the streets and flames from fired stores spread, eventually gutting more than seven hundred buildings in the business district.  (By John Osborne) 
 
Source Citation: 
Benson J. Lossing, The Pictorial History of the Civil War in the United States of America (Hartford, CT:: T. Belknap, 1868), III: 545-548.