May 8, 1865: Sherman snubs Halleck

Henry Halleck

Despite their long friendship, Sherman refuses Halleck’s invitation to stay at his headquarters. Halleck’s order to disregard Sherman’s commands in the wake of his surrender agreement with Johnston still stings. I’ve reproduced that April 26 dispatch below.

Official Records:

Richmond, Va., May 8, 1865-6. 55 p. m. (Received 7. 30 p. m.)
Major General W. T. SHERMAN,

(Care of commanding officer at Fort Monroe).
When you arrive here come directly to my headquarters. I have a room for you, and will have rooms elsewhere for your staff.

Major-General, Commanding.


FORT MONROE, Va., May 8, 1865-9 p. m.
(Received 9. 50 p. m.)
General HALLECK,

After your dispatch to the Secretary of War of April 26 I cannot have any friendly intercourse with you. I will come to City Point to-morrow and march with my troops, and I prefer we should not meet.



RICHMOND, VA., April 26, 1865-9. 30 p. m.

(Received 10. 45 p. m.)

Honorable E. M. STANTON,


Generals Meade, Sheridan, and Wright are acting under orders to pay no regard to any truce or orders of General Sherman suspending hostilities, on the ground that Sherman’s agreements could bind his own command only, and no other. They are directed to push forward, regardless of orders from any one except General Grant, and cut off Johnston’s retreat. Beauregard has telegraphed to Danville that a new arrangement had been made with Sherman, and that the advance of the Sixth Corps was to be suspended till further orders. I have telegraphed back to obey no orders of General Sherman, but to push forward as rapidly as possible. The bankers here have information to-day that Jeff. Davis’ specie is moving south from Goldsborough in wagons as fast as possible. I suggest that orders be telegraphed through General Thomas that Wilson obey no orders of Sherman, and notifying him and General Canby and all commanders on the Mississippi River to take measures to intercept the rebel chiefs and their plunder. The specie taken with them is estimated here at from six to thirteen millions.


Major-General, Commanding.

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