Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Still Some More Blood To Effuse

Lynchburg VA
April 8, 2015

150 years ago yesterday Ulysses Grant wrote Robert E Lee indicating that he thought maybe that recent events should have indicated that the Army of Northern Virginia was finished and that they should try to avoid further effusion of blood.  Lee wrote back that he still did not think the cause was hopeless, but just for talking purposes what would the terms be.

Today Grant would respond that that his only requirement was that the men and officers surrendered be disqualified from taking up arms against the United States until properly exchanged,

My friend Alan Jacobs and I are at the Travel Inn in Lynchburg and will be heading over to the national park, which is about twenty miles away.  Lynchburg was the next goal of AVN, but it would not make it.

Tomorrow the big day there will be shuttle service to Appomattox.  Coming in to Lynchburg yesterday, we did not note any hints of the Sesquicentennial.  As I was driving through the towns and cities of Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York and New Jersey on the way to pick up Alan at the train station in Seacaucus  I was thinking that 150 years ago those towns and cities all had boys in Virginia they were worried about.  

Alan and I spent most of the time from New Jersey to Virginia, which was lovely hassle free drive, talking about high school days.  His taking the trip was a kind of crazy spontaneous thing.  When I posted on Facebook that I was going, he commented obviously jokingly "Can I come?" and I thought "Why the hell not?"

Alan and I generally traveled in very different circles growing up in Fairview and Palisades Park NJ, but we had a mutual friend who had a penchant for connecting people that shared some ineffable quality despite outward appearances.  

Alan was about the hippest person I knew back then.  When he starred in a school play it was not some candy ass musical, but a deep play - Rhinoceros by Ionesco. Everything about him was alternative or so it seemed.  

So when I stumbled on him on Facebook a couple of years ago I was not surprised to learn he lived in Greenwich Village.  I visited him in New York a couple of times, but this current trip will probably more than double the lifespan we have shared.

I hope to have some interviews for my next post.  We'll see how it goes.

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