The fact that the Confederate capital, Richmond, would soon fall, caused General Lee to send an urgent message to President Jefferson Davis that the government must evacuate or face certain capture. Late that night a special train carrying the President and Members of the Confederate Cabinet departed Richmond for Danville, Virginia. Although the news was bleak, it was hoped that the struggle could continue.
Shortly after midnight a second train departed the Richmond station also heading south. On board were all the hard currency reserves of the Confederate States of America guarded by a group of young midshipmen from the Confederate Navy.Amongst the official records of the Confederacy crates and barrels containing gold and silver coins, bullion, and a substantial amount of fine jewelry donated to the Cause by women across the South. In addition there was more than $450,000 in gold from Richmond bank reserves, taken to keep it from falling into the hands of the invading Yankees.
By the end of the day on April 3, 1865 Richmond lay in ashes. The gold could not be found.