There are many men who would have done better than I did under the circumstances in which I found myself. If I had never held command; if I had fallen, there were 10,000 behind who would have followed the contest to the end and never surrendered the Union.
It is probably well that we had the war when we did. We are better off now than we would have been without it, and have made more rapid progress than we otherwise should have made. Now our republic has shown itself capable of dealing with one of the greatest wars ever made, and our people have proven themselves to be the most formidable in war of any nationality. But this war was a fearful lesson and should teach us the necessity of avoiding wars in the future.
Let us have peace.
No other terms than unconditional and immediate surrender. I propose to move immediately upon your works.
One of my superstitions had always been when I started to go anywhere, or to do anything, not to turn back, or stop until the thing intended was accomplished.
The art of war is simple enough. Find out where your enemy is. Get at him as soon as you can. Strike him as hard as you can, and keep moving on.
The one thing I never want to see again is a military parade. When I resigned from the army and went to a farm I was happy. When the rebellion came, I returned to the service because it was a duty. I had no thought of rank; all I did was try and make myself useful.
The people who had been in rebellion must necessarily come back into the Union, and be incorporated as an integral part of the nation. Naturally the nearer they were placed to equality with the people who had rebelled, the more reconciled they would feel
I see from the papers that my name has been sent in for Brigadier General. This is certainly very complimentary to me, particularly as I have never asked a friend to intercede in my behalf. Hearing that I was likely to be promoted, the officers, with great unanimity have requested to be attached to my command. This I don't want you to read to others for I very much dislike speaking of myself.