One hundred feet east of this spot in the Bennett House General Joseph E. Johnston and Major General William T. Sherman met at noon, April 17, 1865, to discuss terms of a proposed surrender. They met in this house again on April 18 and wrote and signed a "Basis of Agreement," under the terms of which General Johnston agreed to surrender all the Confederate armies then in the field. President Andrew Johnson rejected the terms agreed upon, sent orders to General Sherman on April 24 "to give forty-eight hours' notice and resume hostilities at the end of that time," and ordered General Grant to go to Raleigh to "direct military movements." General Grant arrived in Raleigh on April 24, but out of consideration for General Sherman he did not assume command.
On the evening of April 25, General Johnston "asked another interview" with General Sherman "to renew negotiations," and on the twenty-sixth at 2 P. M. the generals met a third time in the Bennett House and signed the terms of "a military convention," under which 36,817 Confederate soldiers in North Carolina and 52,453 in Georgia and Florida laid down their arms.
This monument thus marks the spot where the military force of the United States of America finally triumphed and established as inviolate the principle of an indissoluble Union. It marks also the spot of the last stand of the Confederacy in maintaining its ideal of indestructible states - an ideal which preserved to the American Union by virtue of the heroic fight grows in strength from year to year.
[ Back of Monument : ]
In fulfillment of the wishes of Samuel Tate Morgan, and in his memory, this monument and grounds are given to the state of North Carolina by his family.
Sarah Thompson Morgan
Blanche Morgan Reynolds
Maude Morgan Cabell
Samuel Tate Morgan, Jr.
The gift was accepted on behalf of
the state by
Bennehan Cameron, ? Julian S. Carr,
R. D. W. Connor, ? ? ? Frank C. Brown,
W. T. Bost, ? ? ? ? ? ? R. O. Everett,
D. H. Hill
Members of the Bennett Place
Memorial Commission created by the
General Assembly of North Carolina
1923, and the formal Act of Presentation
and acceptance took place
October 12, 1923