Inside the Vault

Inside the Vault: “The Surrender of Robert E. Lee”

“I ask a suspension of hostilities pending the discussion of the Terms of surrender of this army.”
—Robert E. Lee, April 9, 1865

Shortly before noon on April 9, 1865, Confederate General Robert E. Lee sent a message to Union General Ulysses S. Grant asking for a “suspension of hostilities pending the discussion of the Terms of surrender of this army.” By the end of the day, Lee had accepted Grant’s terms for surrender. The next day, Lee issued General Order No. 9, a farewell message to his troops.

Join us on Tuesday, April 9, 2024, from 7:00 to 8:00 p.m. ET (4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. PT) when our curators discuss the surrender of Robert E. Lee and related documents with  Dr. Caroline Janney, John L. Nau III Professor in the History of the American Civil War and director of the John L. Nau III Center for Civil War History at the University of Virginia.

Submit your questions for Dr. Janney here.

Register Here


Featured Documents

Related Resources


I cannot attend the live program. Will it be recorded?

Yes! The program is recorded and sent in an email the following day to everyone who registers.

About Inside the Vault

Inside the Vault: Highlights from the Gilder Lehrman Collection is an online program that highlights unique primary sources from the Gilder Lehrman Collection. From iconic historical treasures, such as the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Emancipation Proclamation, to personal letters that reveal the contributions of ordinary American citizens, each session will investigate primary sources and discuss their background, impact, and potential use in the classroom.