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Petersburg (Petersburg, Virginia)
Virginia: Follow Lincoln (and 'Lincoln') in Richmond, Petersburg
Virginia: Follow Lincoln (and 'Lincoln') in Richmond, Petersburg

RICHMOND, Va. — Below the spaghetti-works of Interstate 95, beside a canal where excursion boats are the only watercraft, I try to imagine a group of African American workers on the day after Union soldiers brought freedom to Richmond. They were repairing a bridge in the newly surrendered capital of the Confederacy when a tall, gangly man in a stovepipe hat approached from the James River. A few Marines surrounded him, but there was no fanfare. President Abraham Lincoln had just arrived by rowboat to see the city that had been his nemesis for four long years of the Civil War. Pandemonium erupted. "Such wild, indescribable ecstatic joy I never witnessed," Charles Coffin...

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