Learn how Robert E. Lee surrendered to Ulysses S. Grant in this excerpt from The Civil War: A Film by Ken Burns. April 7, 1865 - Grant writes to Lee. April 9, 1865 - Lee sends word that he will surrender. Robert E. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant meet at Appomattox to work out the terms of the surrender. The formal surrender comes three days later. In Washington, Lincoln quietly rejoices. A few blocks away, John Wilkes Booth plots.