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And So It Ends

Appomattox CourthouseThe South we inhabit today began with Lee's surrender to Grant at Appomattox. The formal end to the Civil War, it definitively brought the antebellum era to its close. On the 150th anniversary of this historic meeting, we look back at the war's beginning with Brent Tarter's new book, Daydreams and Nightmares: A Virginia Family Faces Secession and War, a devastating look at the personal cost of the war. The scene of the war's conclusion provides a fascinating entry in Anne Carter Lee's Buildings of Virginia: Valley, Piedmont, Southside, and Southwest, the latest addition to the Buildings of the United States series. The iconic Appomattox Courthouse is also included in the BUS series' online counterpart, SAH Archipedia. Less than a week after the historic events of Appomattox, the war saw the second defining event of its final chapter—the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. The end of slavery in America was the hard-won victory after four years of bitter conflict; in Lincoln's Dilemma: Blair, Sumner, and the Republican Struggle over Racism and Inequality in the Civil War Era, celebrated historian Paul Escott shows how the president had to navigate even his own party in order to see his Emancipation Proclamation through.

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