New York Herald, 4/18/1865, p. 5, c. 2
Arrival of the Rebel General Lee.
HE IS ENTHUSIASTICALLY GREETED,
&c., &c., &c.
Mr. William H. Merriam’s Despatch.
NEW YORK HERALD ROOMS,
RICHMOND, Va., April 16 – 2 A. M.
POSITIVE ARRIVAL OF GENERAL R. E. LEE IN RICHMOND.
General Robert E. Lee, lately commanding the rebel armies, actually arrived in Richmond yesterday afternoon, at half-past three o’clock. The first intimation of the arrival of the General was the call made upon Lieutenant H. S. Merrell, Post Quartermaster of Richmond, for forage and stabling for twenty horses in behalf of General Lee. Shortly after three o’clock General Lee arrived on the pontoon bridge that spans the James between Richmond and Manchester, an opposite town. Here an immense crowd had collected to receive him, and he was greeted with sheers upon cheers, the acclamations of the people, so generously and heartily bestowed, visibly affecting him. Whenever he passed Union officers they raised their caps, in recognition of his great genius, no less than his regard for truth and consistency in refusing to draw his sword outside of his native Virginia. As he proceeded along the streets to his residence in Franklin street the crowd increased in numbers, and the cheers grew louder.
The General was accompanied by five members of his staff, General Lee and all wearing swords. As he dismounted at his residence the thousands of people who surrounded him again greeted him with acclaim, and so many as could get near his person shook him heartily by the hand. One rebel officer, failing to catch his hand, seized him by the extremities of his coat – “touching the hem of his garment.” The good feeling in relation to General Lee was common to both Unionists and rebels, and was fully shared in by all.
General Lee looked exceedingly robust, and is certainly a most splendid specimen of a soldier and gentleman, with fair forehead, gray hair, bronzed countenance and military beard. He will doubtless see the military dignitaries here, quietly, before he leaves the city again – the taking place of which latter event is not now positively known.