August V. Kautz memoir, USAMHI, p. 106
On the 4th I made the headquarters of Div. in the Richmond House, formerly, but more recently the Hotel had been converted into a public building called the Tythe Office. The first thing I did during the morning was to visit that portion of my command in the redoubts on the west side of the city and to ride about the city and get a general idea of its topography.
In the afternoon between three and four p.m., while inspecting my new headquarters in the Richmond House, I was drawn to the window by the noise of a large crowd and recognized Mr. Lincoln and his son Tad and Admiral Porter coming up from the landing followed by a large crowd of enthusiastic Negroes. I hurried out and joined Mr. Lincoln and conducted him to Genl. Weitzel's quarters in the Davis House. Soon the street in front was black with Negroes. An informal reception was held and afterwards, a couple of ambulance wagons were brought and Mr. Lincoln, Admiral Porter, Genl. Weitzel, Genl. Shiply and I occupied one and a number of the staff took the other and we drove about the city and into the capitol grounds. We drove entirely around the building and, as we passed around the southeast corner, the President expressed some fears of the wagon upsetting as we had a steep bank on one side and a narrow space for the wagon. We completed our drive at the landing where lay the gunboat Malvern, on which Mr. Lincoln had come to the city from City Point. The enthusiasm on the part of the colored population was very great on account of the presence of the President. Many of them followed close after our wagon notwithstanding that we were driven quite rapidly.
Mr. Lincoln remained until the evening of the 6th making his quarters on the gunboat. Negotiations were said to be pending to have the people resume their allegiance to union voluntarily. My recollection is that Gen. Weitzel received verbal instructions from Mr. Lincoln to cause the Legislature to assemble for this purpose. He issued an order to that effect. I remember that Genl. Shiply cautioned Weitzel to secure Mr. Lincoln's order in writing on the subject for the reason that his action would be criticized in the north. As soon as his order was known in Washington a telegraphic dispatch was received from Mr. Stanton inquiring by what authority he had issued the order for the Legislature to assemble. Weitzel replied that it was done by direction of the President. Mr. Stanton replied that the explanation was not satisfactory, and directed him to revoke his order, which he did. I believe Weitzel was never satisfied with the position in which he was placed in this matter.
...During our stay many distinguished people from the north continued to come and go. On the 5th Mr. Dana, Asst. Sec. of War arrived; also Mrs. Grant and Mrs. Rawlins. On the 7th Vice President Johnson and several Senators arrived.