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The Inescapable

In The Divine Intruder, James R. Edwards recounts this story:

Wilmer McLean was a small farmer in the Shenandoah Valley in 1861. In the spring of that year two powerful armies met on his property;the Union army under General McDowell and the Confederate army under General Beauregard. The bloodiest war in American history began at Bull Run, a creek that ran through McLean's property. McLean was not at all sure why the armies were fighting, but he was quite sure he did not want them fighting on his property. If he could not change the course of the war, he at least did not have to be part of it. McLean decided to sell out and go where the war would never find him.
He chose the most obscure place in the whole country—or so he thought: an old house in the village of Appomattox Court House, Virginia. Four years later General Grant was pursuing General Lee through Virginia. In Appomattox County, Grant sent a message to Lee asking him to meet and sign a truce. The place where they met to sign the peace that ended the Civil War was Wilmer McLean's living room!

Some things you cannot get away from.

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