“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Powhatan in Powhatan County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)


Rest and Reconciliation

Derwent CWT Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, April 26, 2009
1. Derwent CWT Marker
Inscription.  In the summer of 1865, Robert E. Lee and his family resided here at Derwent. Lee had reunited with his wife and children in a rented house in Richmond after he surrendered the Army of Northern Virginia at Appomattox Court House on April 9. Financially broken, uncertain of his future, and ill in health, Lee sought “some small little home in the woods” where he might live simply as a farmer and provide for his family. At the end of June, Mrs. Elizabeth Randolph Cocke offered him sanctuary at this cottage.

Here at Derwent, named after a beautiful lake in England, Lee found the quietness he needed to focus on his future. He often rode his famous warhorse, Traveller, through the Powhatan countryside and conversed with surprised farmers. From Derwent he communicated with former comrades and others who sought his advice. To many Southerners Lee remained a leader and a model of proper conduct during Military Reconstruction. Late in the summer, Judge John W. Brokenbrough of Lexington asked Lee to become the president of Washington College there. Lee accepted, leaving his Powhatan retreat on September 15 and devoting the remainder
Derwent CWT Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, April 26, 2009
2. Derwent CWT Marker
Click or scan to see
this page online
of his life to the education of young men.

“The questions which for years were in dispute between the State and General government, and which unhappily were not decided by the dictates of reason, but referred to the decision of war, having been decided against us, it is the part of wisdom to acquiesce in the result, and of candor to recognize the fact. … All should unite in honest efforts to obliterate the effects of war and to restore the blessings of peace, … promote harmony and good feeling; … and elect to the State and general Legislatures wise and patriotic men, who will devote their abilities to the interest of the country, and the healing of all dissensions.” – Lee to former Virginia Gov. John Letcher, Aug. 28, 1865

“The war being at an end, the Southern States having laid down their arms, and the questions at issue between them and the Northern States having been decided, I believe it to be the duty of everyone to unite in the restoration of the country, and the reestablishment of peace and harmony.” – Lee to Capt. Josiah Tatnall, Savannah, Ga., Sept. 7, 1865
Erected by Virginia Civil War Trails.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included
Derwent image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, April 26, 2009
3. Derwent
in the Virginia Civil War Trails series list. A significant historical month for this entry is April 1864.
Location. 37° 36.331′ N, 78° 4.778′ W. Marker is near Powhatan, Virginia, in Powhatan County. Marker is on Derwent Road 1.3 miles west of Trenholm Road. The marker is located on the circle at the end of Derwent Road. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 6000 Derwent Road, Powhatan VA 23139, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. A different marker also named Derwent (a few steps from this marker); Muddy Creek School (approx. 1.1 miles away); Mosby’s Tavern / Cumberland Old Courthouse (approx. 3.6 miles away); Rosenwald School at Cartersville (approx. 4.3 miles away); Campaign of 1781 (approx. 4.4 miles away); a different marker also named Campaign of 1781 (approx. 4.4 miles away); Hamilton High School (approx. 4.4 miles away); Cumberland County / Powhatan County (approx. 4˝ miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Powhatan.
More about this marker. On the lower left is a photo of "Derwent". On the upper right is a painting of "Lee on Traveller".
Also see . . .  Civil War Traveler - Central Virginia: Richmond and Area. Powhatan County. Derwent. (Submitted on May 18, 2009, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia.) 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on April 27, 2009, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia. This page has been viewed 2,221 times since then and 114 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on April 27, 2009, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia.

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May. 11, 2021