On April 17 Johnston and Sherman met at the Bennett farm. Negotiations between the two men lasted several days, but on April 26, the Generals agreed on the terms of Johnston’s surrender. As part of this agreement, the Union would not take any prisoners, but the men in Johnston’s army would sign paroles, agreeing to not take up arms in support of the Confederacy. As long as each soldier abided by the terms outlined in this document, he would be free to return to his home.
Below is a transcription of a parole that was required to be signed by the officers and men in Johnston's army.
GREENSBORO SALISBURY, NORTH CAROLINA,
May ________, 1865. In accordance with the terms of the Military Convention, entered into the twenty-sixth day of April, 1865, between General Joseph E. Johnston, commanding the Confederate army, and Major-General W. T. Sherman, commanding the United States Army in North Carolina,
has given his solemn obligation not to take up arms against the Government of the United States until properly released from this obligation, and is permitted to return to his home, not to be disturbed by the United States authorities so long as he observes this obligation and obeys the laws in force where he may reside.
[Signed by Special Commissioner, U.S. Army, and the soldier's commanding officer, Confederate Army]
Primary Source Citation:
[Civil War Parole Slip]. May, 1865. Bennett Place Historical Site, Durham, NC.