Lee's Argumentative Essay

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ed he “would rather die a thousand deaths” than surrender to Grant (Winik 168). Plus, when you take into consideration that the Confederate president, Jefferson Davis, had already supported the idea of guerilla warfare, it is obvious that Alexander’s plan was a tempting option from Lee’s point of view.
Even with all the benefits guerilla warfare would have had for Lee, he still decided against it, largely due to his sense of duty to the country. Lee was the hero of the Confederates, and had he accepted the idea of guerilla warfare, many others resisting the Union would have followed him. As Charles Adams put it, “The Confederacy would have been reduced to smoldering wilderness” (Winik 152). The effect that guerilla tactic could have had on
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Instead of acting with vengeance and hate, Lee accepted defeat to and began helping the country heal. This set an example than many other Confederates would follow. Lee’s behavior helped set the tone for the entire reconstruction period. He even told Grant that “his whole efforts to pacifying the country and bringing the people back to the Union” (Winik 195). He later honored that promise by indirectly encouraging Johnston to surrender and telling Jefferson Davis to “save useless effusion of blood” (Winik 317). Usually, when a country is torn apart by a Civil War, there is animosity between the two sides for decades afterward. There was still some bitterness between North and South after Appomattox, but thanks to the example Lee set for the South, the task of reuniting the country was easier and more peaceful. Appomattox was did not end the war but “the spirit of Appomattox” that Lee and Grant created did help the country heal (Winik 195). With his dignified surrender at Appomattox, Lee led the way towards reconciliation, and once again allowed America to develop into a real nation, which survives to this …show more content…
Lee had impacted America by his actions on the battlefield, it was his surrender on April 9th, 1865 that had the largest consequences for America’s history. This day may not be seen as Lee’s proudest moments, but the decisions he made truly did help to shape America into the nation it is today. In his choice to surrender rather than use guerrilla tactics, Lee saved America from a long, difficult conflict that could have permanently destroyed the republic. Then, by accepting surrender with poise and respect, he helped set the North and South on a path towards reunification. Obviously, Lee was not the only person responsible for the Reconstruction. Grant and Lincoln also had a large part in making Appomattox go smoothly. And Appomattox did not mark the end of the Civil War, as Johnston still had a significant army fighting in North Carolina. But Lee’s ability to accept defeat for the good of the country kept America from falling apart. If it were not for Lee, America easily could have become a terrible, unstable battlefield, similar to modern war-torn countries such as Syria or Cambodia. Lee’s actions surely helped to prevent this.By accepting surrender rather than using guerilla tactics, Robert E. Lee encouraged reconciliation between the North and South and allowed America grow into a real

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