As of this posting, there are 162 posts here on BoothieBarn. While the blog format of the site is beneficial in displaying posts in an easy to read fashion, I have been finding that it lacks proper organization. Blog posts are inherently organized chronologically with the newest posts first while older posts are pushed down and then onto subsequent pages. Currently there are 17 pages of posts, which is only going to grow as time goes on. Also, since the themes of the posts vary widely from day to day, it is difficult, especially for new readers, to easily find older posts about a certain topic. Therefore, over the last couple days, I have re-read all my posts, identified the major topics discussed in each, and created a poor man’s Index:Granted, my Index is not organized alphabetically as most indexes. However, I’m still hopeful that this index will make it easier for readers to find old posts about topics that interest them in a quick and convenient way. You can access the Index by clicking the word “Index” at the very top of the webpage:
Posts Tagged With: News
Mr. Marsella graciously sent me some more images of one of his completed Booth diaries to share. I think you’ll agree that his work is extremely detailed and the very best reproduction available.
As I stated before, you can purchase your own, hand-made, replica John Wilkes Booth diary from Mr. Marsella for the low price of $400 plus $25 shipping paid through PayPal. I’ve already helped facilitate the sale of five of Mr. Marsella’s creations. If you would like to order one please email me at: boothiebarn (at) gmail (dot) com and I’ll send you instructions on how to send payment.
A month ago, I noticed an eBay auction selling, “John Wilkes Booth’s Diary National Treasure 2 Prop Replica“. I decided to contact the seller to ask about it. I learned that the piece was a handmade creation by an Italian replica prop maker. The creator’s name is Pasquale Marsella and he has an entire website showing his self-created prop replicas for his favorite move series, Indiana Jones. His cinematic interests are multifaceted and he also very much enjoys the National Treasure movies. Due to this he meticulously replicated items from that movie series such as the President’s Book of Secrets and Booth’s diary. After e-mailing for a bit, I inquired with him how many diaries he had for sale. Mr. Marsella told me he still had about 10 -15 completed leather covers in his possession, the interiors of which still needed to be completed. Up until now he was just selling them to other prop collectors for their National Treasure collections. However, the detail is so fine and the craftsmanship is so good, I told him he was missing out on a whole other market: Lincoln assassination researchers and collectors.
Over the past month, Mr. Marsella and I have been working together to tweak and adjust his original design. As stated, his original product was a replica of a replica. It was very good at a glance, but details like the interior pages themselves were not the same as the original Booth diary. Using John Wilkes Booth’s FBI file and images of the diary the Secret Service took of it in the 1970′s, Mr. Marsella and I have been able to duplicate the interior of the diary exactly. The written pages are now in Booth’s handwriting, and the diary has the exact number of present and missing pages as the original. I know that Mr. Marsella is very proud of his new design and is happy to offer his hand-made diaries to readers of this blog at a generously discounted rate.
Remember, these diaries are all hand-made by Mr. Marsella, with hand tooled leather and printed pages to match the interior of Booth’s diary exactly. The diaries will be aged to replicate the original diary housed at Ford’s Theatre.
In addition to a remarkable replica of Booth’s diary, Mr. Marsella is also throwing in copies of the CDVs of Booth’s ladies found inside the diary and a replica map that was used at the trial of the conspirators.
Mr. Marsella is offering all of these replicas; the diary, CDVs, and map, for the cost of $400 plus $25 shipping. I truly believe the workmanship is worth every penny and the rarity of a good replica makes it a great deal. For comparison, it would cost you $2,500 to purchase a replica diary from the original propmaster on National Treasure 2 and this pricey version would not be as exact as the one Mr. Marsella has created.
For those of you out there who are interested in buying your own replica John Wilkes Booth diary please email me at: boothiebarn (at) gmail (dot) com. From there I’ll send you instructions on how to send Mr. Marsella payment. Please note that Mr. Marsella needs 25 days after payment is received to age and assemble the diary properly.
If it helps convince you, I have an order in for a diary as does the Surratt House Museum which will be putting the replica on display.
If you have any questions for me, or questions I can pass along to Mr. Marsella, please feel free to ask them in the comments below.
Well the 2013 Surratt Conference has come and gone and what a tremendous event it was! I’m happily exhausted after such a wonderful weekend socializing and listening to the most knowledgable group of people in the field of the Lincoln assassination.
This was a very special conference for me as I had the honor of presenting about the Garrett family in front of my friends and colleagues. My speech was graciously received and I was overwhelmed by the kind words extended to me regarding it. I feel so fortunate to be part of such a supportive and collaborative field of scholars.
What really made the whole weekend special for me was that a descendant of the Garrett family, with whom I’ve been in contact with and visited a few months back, was able to attend the conference. Today, Lindsey and I took him into Virginia to visit the site of the Garrett house and the church where the Garretts attended. It really was the most fitting way to end one of the best weekends of my life. Attached are a few pictures of this weekend, and I only wish I took more.
I am shamelessly pleased to announce, that I have an article published in the April edition of “Knife World” magazine. The article entitled, “Cloak and Daggers: Cutting through the Confusion of the Lincoln Assassination Knives”, contains my research into the the knives used by Booth and his conspirators.
This article in Knife World is a rewrite of the one published in March of 2012 by the Surratt Courier. The core of the article explains my belief that Ford’s Theatre currently has an incorrect knife identified and displayed as “Booth’s knife”. After the original article was published, a wonderful colleague and supporter of mine, Jim Garrett, took it over to Ford’s Theatre where he volunteers. He raised some heck over there, putting copies of my article into the hands of anyone he could find. With his help, I was able to visit the NPS’ storage facility in Landover, MD. It was there that I was able to see and hold the knife I believe was taken from Booth’s body upon his death at Garrett’s farm. A few months later, Ford’s Theatre was contacted by the editor of Knife World who was looking for some information about their knives. Remembering the heck he raised, Ford’s passed the editor’s request onto Jim, who then forwarded it to me. After I sent the editor a copy of my article for the Courier, he asked me if I would revise it for his audience and publication. I was more than happy to do so. I provided them with photographs and illustrations and they arranged the whole thing beautifully.
If you are interested, you can order a copy of the April 2013 edition of “Knife World” with my article inside. The price for the one issue is $6.00 and that includes shipping. You can order by emailing them your request at email@example.com or by calling (865) 397-1955.
I’m very proud of this article because it is reaching a different group of people than would usually read about the assassination. What’s more, this is the first piece of work that I’ve ever been paid for. In my eyes this makes me an author and that is a very good feeling.
To many of the readers of BoothieBarn, the Surratt Society Conference on the Lincoln Assassination needs no introduction. Held annually for the last thirteen years, the conference is a social and educational gathering of those interested in the drama that played out in April of 1865. It attracts Civil War buffs, amateur historians, and noted authors in the field of Lincoln’s assassination. It is organized and put on by the Surratt Society in conjunction with the Surratt House Museum. This year the conference is being held on the weekend of March 15 – 17, just two weeks away! The Surratt House offers two bus tours on the Friday and Sunday of the conference weekend. The bulk of the “conference” part takes place on Saturday, March 16. The day’s events consist of a full breakfast, three presentations, a full lunch, three more presentations, an author’s hour, a social hour, and an evening banquet with entertainment. The Surratt Conference is hands down the most stimulating and fun gathering of minds in the Lincoln assassination field.
This, the 14th annual conference, has the following wonderful speakers and topics being presented:
- Betty Ownsbey, author of Alias “Paine”, will be presenting new information on conspirator Lewis Powell in advance of the new second edition of her book.
- Dr. Tom Bogar will give a thrilling look into the stories and people who worked backstage or were performing at Ford’s Theatre the night Lincoln was assassinated. This is in advance of his new book, “Backstage at the Lincoln Assassination’.
- Dr. Blaine Houmes, M.D., who gave a phenomenal talk two years ago at the conference, will return examining more, “Medical Mysteries of the Lincoln Conspiracy”.
- Dr. Kenneth Heineman will present about Thomas Ewing, the lawyer who defended conspirators Dr. Samuel Mudd, Samuel Arnold, and Edman Spangler at the conspiracy trial of 1865.
- Wesley Harris, author of an upcoming book about the weapons of the conspirators, is following up on last year’s presentation and giving us an even deeper look at the “Tools of the Assassins”
- The entertainment for the evening banquet is a sit down with Erik Jendresen, the mastermind behind the recent “Killing Lincoln” docu-drama that debuted on NatGeo. Erik will talk about his experience researching and filming this wonderful piece.
In addition to these doctors and experts, the organizers of the Surratt Conference also made the mistake of asking me to speak. I am both honored and terrified at this opportunity. Here’s the little bio they put together about me:
DAVID TAYLOR, a second grade teacher, formerly of Illinois, has relocated to Maryland to be closer to the assassination story. A Life member of the Surratt Society, Mr. Taylor has contributed several articles to the Society’s Courier newsletter. Mr. Taylor enjoys thoroughly researching various facets of the assassination, and writes about them on his online blog: http://www.boothiebarn.com. Although his research has taken him down many different avenues from weapons, to Ford’s Theatre playbills, to a conspirator’s family quilt, he has always held a special interest in the Garrett family of Caroline County, Virginia and their surprise houseguest, John Wilkes Booth. In his talk, Mr. Taylor will discuss the Garretts, their accounts of what transpired the night of April 26th, 1865, and the legacy Booth’s visit had on their lives.
The subject of my presentation, as stated, is the Garrett family who unknowingly housed John Wilkes Booth from about 3 o’clock April 24th until his death in the early morning hours of April 26th. I have done considerable research about this family, finding them to be my main interest in the assassination story. I am deeply honored that one of the attendees of the conference is going to be a descendant of the Garrett family who has greatly helped me in my research. The two of us will be meeting and talking with folks during the Author’s Hour. In anticipation for the conference, I’ve changed the header image on the blog to one of the pictures I have discovered (and photoshopped) of the Garrett House.
If you have not already done so, consider signing up for the conference which is housed at the Colony South Hotel and Conference Center in Clinton, Maryland. For more information, or to sign up, call the Surratt House Museum at (301) 868-1121. The cost is $190 per person.
I look forward to seeing you there. Please though, only bring one tomato per attendee. More than that and it will take forever to clean up the stage for the speaker that follows me.
P.S. You may notice a lack of postings here on BoothieBarn for the next two weeks. This is due to the fact that I am focusing my free time on my conference presentation. Thank you for understanding.
This post is just a friendly reminder to all the email followers of this blog that the much anticipated docudrama “Killing Lincoln” debuts tonight at 8pm EST on National Geographic Channel! Make sure to watch it and post your thoughts and comments about it here or on Roger Norton’s Lincoln Discussion Symposium.
While I’m waiting for the debut, I’m checking out the show’s official website which contains interviews with the cast, clips from the film, and production stills. National Geographic has also created a phenomenal interactive timeline of Booth’s conspiracy and manhunt that you absolutely need to check out!
So remember, “Killing Lincoln” tonight at 8 pm EST on NatGeo. Don’t miss it!
There have been a few articles and opinion pieces published of late by the Enid, Oklahoma newspaper, Enid News & Eagle dealing with the subject of David E. George and the “Booth” mummy. The initial article was entitled, “A deathbed claim” and was published on January 12. It came on the anniversary of David E. George’s suicide by poison and did a good job of relating the tale.
In the end, the article relates escape theorist Nate Orlowek’s failed attempt to exhume John Wilkes Booth’s body from Green Mount Cemetery in the 1990′s to perform a DNA test, and his current quest to desecrate the grave of Edwin Booth to do the same. While I do enjoy the Booth mummy story and find the mummy itself to be interesting, it is nothing more than an oddity. It is on the same level as the Trigger Finger I posted about before, only the mummy has a much better back story.
I was very surprised by one quote from the article:
One of the most compelling facts, Orlowek said, is that George, as St. Helen, related to Bates details of a botched plan to kidnap Lincoln that would have been known by Booth, but which weren’t released from government records until 1935, after Bates’ death.
The kidnapping plot was far from a secret from the general public until 1935. At the trial of the conspirators in 1865, the kidnapping plot was discussed in testimony relating to Samuel Arnold and Michael O’Laughlen in particular. Anyone who read the daily newspaper accounts of the trial would have known about the “botched plan”. Many books, penny dreadfuls, and newspapers of the time featured accounts of the conspirators’ attempt to abduct Lincoln and take him South. To say that no one knew about it until 1935 is just untrue.
What’s more interesting to me is the fact that whenever articles like these come up, they never mention a big part of Bates’ book: that Andrew Johnson was behind the assassination plot. John St. Helen told Bates that it was Johnson’s idea and command for Booth to kill Lincoln. Escape theorists always seem to shy away from this point when discussing “Booth’s” escape and suicide. Is it because they realize that, while the average person might entertain the idea the Booth could have escaped, they would never believe it if they knew the details of this purported theory? It’s easier to find followers to a theory when its absurdity doesn’t seem to harm anyone. To believe that Booth escaped based on Bates’ book is to also believe that Andrew Johnson was behind Lincoln’s death. You cannot support the one without supporting the other.
Anyway, the initial article was followed up by a few opinion letters sent to the Enid News. The first was a letter from a woman recounting her grandfather’s time in Enid when David E. George died. The next one was an opinion piece, seemingly from the newspaper itself, supporting the idea of exhuming Edwin to test his DNA. The most recent one, is the first to denounce Bates’ book and the idea that Booth escaped his death at Garrett’s farm. Here’s a funny excerpt from that one:
This entire mirage is based on a book written by Finis Bates. I have repeatedly proclaimed it is one of the worst pieces of literary rambling I have ever read. It provides no research and no documentation whatsoever. The main source of this meaningless book is the so-called words of a guy allegedly named John St. Helen. According to Bates, this exchange of information took place while he and St. Helen were sitting on a pile of rocks down in Texas.
I taught the Lincoln assassination for years, and I find that no honorable historian has recognized David George as John Wilkes Booth. According to Sunday’s article, Nate Orlowek said he is 85 percent sure the man shot in the Garrett Farm barn was not John Wilkes Booth. Wow! I am 100 percent certain that John Wilkes Booth died on the front porch of the Garrett Farm. I see no reason to glorify this wayward coward. Frankly, sports fans, it just ain’t so.
For those of you interesting in learning more about the facts and stories surrounding the John St. Helen/David E. George story, the absolutely best resource is the compendium of articles published by the Surratt Society entitled, The Body in the Barn: The Controversy Over the Death of John Wilkes Booth.
This publication contains articles by escape theorists and assassination researchers debating the death of John Wilkes Booth. It is available for purchase from the Surratt House Museum Giftshop for $10. To order a copy, call (301) 868-1121 or complete a mail order and send in a check.
In conclusion, the story of David E. George’s death in Enid, OK is an interesting, but fringe, aspect to the assassination story. It will undoubtedly continue to be brought up and discussed, especially in the environs of Enid. On its face it is an entertaining and harmless enough theory. However, when it is used as a catalyst to desecrate the grave of Edwin Booth - a man whose whole life was marred by the actions of his misguided brother – or damage one of the few relics that remain above ground of the assassin, it is a very dangerous thing.
Orlowek states that, “No historian should fear the truth.” I wholeheartedly agree. Historical truths are constantly being examined and re-evaluated. Booth’s death at Garrett’s farm has been studied for almost 150 years by amatuer and experts alike. While minor aspects may be up for debate and interpretation, the facts have been validated countless times. John Wilkes Booth died on April 26, 1865 on the Garrett farm in Caroline County, VA.
“Body of Wilkes Booth Revival of Report that Assassin Effected Escape Desire For Investigation Transfer of Remains to the Family of Deceased Star Reporter Was Present Identification Was Complete – Opening of the Ordnance Chest That Contained the CorpseBy James Croggon, The Evening Star, January 5, 1907 [pt. 3, p. 1]
Since the assassination of President Lincoln by John Wilkes Booth at Ford’s Theater the night of April 14, 1865, there have been questions raised as to the identity of the assassin and of the body which, after interment for four years in the grounds of the Washington arsenal, in 1869 found a permanent resting place with his kindred in Greenmount cemetery Baltimore. And now, after nearly forty years, the story that Booth in some manner made his escape and under another name lived for many years is again revived. This time it appears in the form of a letter to Speaker Cannon asking a congressional investigation of the subject to determine whether the body of John D. Heley, who committed suicide at Enid, Okla., in 1903 is not the body of the assassin. The suggestion is made that if such is the case the body be placed on exhibition in a museum as an object lesson.
That this story has perhaps, no other foundation than that the party in question may have borne a striking resemblance to Booth and had woven an air of mystery around him by his reticence as to his antecedents is evident. From time to time such stories have been put forth, one from South America, another from Texas and still another from Georgia. Were they true, Booth resided in several far distant localities at the same time. It is said that in the Georgia case the people who associated with the party suspected as the assassin were so well satisfied that he (a school master) was the real Booth that to this day they repeat the assertion.
That Booth escaped from the theater after firing the shot and rode across the Navy Yard bridge, through Prince George and into Charles county, MD and later crossed the Potomac; that he was pursued and wounded during this attempt to capture him near Bowling Green, Va., are facts which cannot be controverted.
Identity of Assassin Mr. Lincoln was removed from the box in the theater a very short time after the shot had been fired to the Petersen house opposite, then 516 10th street, now known as the Lincoln Memorial Museum – and died there at an early hour in the morning, which fact was announced by the tolling of bells. The fact as to who the assassin was and the manner of his escape from the building and mounting a horse held waiting for him in the alley was soon learned and pursuit was given. It must be confessed that had it not been for the lack of horses by our police force until early in the morning his capture might have been effected within a few hours. Police headquarters was then in the square south of the theater and in less than an hour Maj. Richards and his men had secured information as to the direction taken by Booth. A request was made of the government for horses, but, as stated, several hours elapsed before they were furnished and other parties had obtained a start. That every exertion to capture the parties and hold them secure for trial was apparent in the movements and orders of the government officials and that prompt measures were taken for the confinement of such is seen in the order which reached Commodore Montgomery at the navy yard by 10 o’clock:
“If the authorities arrest the murderer of the President take him to the navy yard and place him on a monitor.”
The ironclads were the Montauk and the Saugus, then lying in the stream on which some of the workmen were employed, and they from April 18 to the 29th were used as prison ships.
Escaped Into Virginia It having been ascertained that Booth escaped into Virginia, Lieut. Col. Conger, with some of Baker’s force and a detachment of the 16th U. S. Cavalry, under the command of Lieut. E. P. Doherty, went in pursuit. He was tracked to Garrett’s farm near Port Royal, beyond the Rappahannock river. He then took refuge in a barn which was fired, and of the soldiers, Boston Corbett, taking aim at Booth, the ball pierced the latter’s neck. The party, with Booth in a wagon, started at once for Acquia creek to board a boat. Before reaching that point Booth died. Corbett’s shot passed through the spinal cord in his neck and the lower part of his body was paralyzed, but in the few hours he lived after receiving the wound he appeared conscious at times and was heard to say as he gazed on his hands – “Useless, useless.”
There were two or three others brought along by the party, and, with the body of Booth, came on the steamer from Acquia creek. It was shortly before 2 o’clock on the morning of April 27 that the members reached the navy yard, and the members of the party were transferred to the monitors. The prisoners were placed in confinement on a monitor and in the yard, and the body of Booth, wrapped in an army blanket, was placed on the Saugus.
That the news of the arrival of the body caused excitement is evident, and in the yard it was difficult for the many workmen to perform their tasks, and there were hundreds who endeavored from the wharf to secure a look at the body, while every one believed to possess information was held up.
Commodore Montgomery gave orders for the making of a box for the remains, and when it became known that such was the case there were men who expressed a wish to drive a nail in it.
Communication with the monitors was restricted to those bearing a pass signed by both Secretaries Stanton and Welles. Lieut Frank Munroe, with a guard of marines enforced the orders.
Surgeons Examine Body While Booth’s body reposed on the monitor men of Baker’s force, as well as cavalry, were about, and there were a few visitors. A girl who had known Booth well was taken aboard by one of Baker’s men, and on identifying him attempted to cut a lock of his hair, but was prevented. During the day Surg. Gen. Barnes, with one or two assistants, and Dr. J. F. May went aboard the monitor. The latter, having removed from the back of Booth’s neck during life a tumor, identified the body from the cut, as well as from his general knowledge. In the afternoon Gen. Barnes and others were seen around the body, and it was afterward learned that from the neck was taken a section or two of the vertebras with some of the spinal cord. This showed the course of Boston Corbett’s bullet, by which death was caused, and these now are among the anatomical specimens at the Army Medical Museum.
The government being satisfied with the identification of the body, its disposition claimed attention. It was left sewed up in the army blanket on the bench, and as Gen. Barnes and party departed some mysterious movements were observed. A report was prevalent in the yard and elsewhere that a vessel of war and the U. S. S. Wachusetts, then lying in the river, would take the body to sea and consign it to oblivion. There is no doubt that the story emanated from Gen. L. C. Baker’s force, as in his published history of his life such a disposition of the corpse is related and pictured. And although there were some movements calculated to bear out the story, The Star announced within a few days that the body had been buried at the arsenal.
It was about 2:30 o’clock when one of the small steamers of the quartermaster’s department moved up the Eastern branch and made fast to one of the monitors. Then a boat was rowed out from the yard and about the monitors and finally to the steamer. From the shore spectators were straining their eyes to decipher what was going on, and soon saw what had the appearance of a body carried to the steamer, and a few minutes later a similar looking object followed. The steamer immediately cast off and soon rounded Glesboro Point and steamed southward.
Proceeded to Arsenal The small boat in which were a naval officer, four sailors and two of Baker’s men pulled away about the same time and in anything but a direct course reached the arsenal front. There the party was landed on a wharf and a sentry was stationed to prevent intrusion. Some of Baker’s men and a War Department official were in consultation with Maj. J. G. Benton, the commandant, during the afternoon, some of the former remaining till after nightfall.
The old penitentiary building extending across 4½ street was then used by the ordnance department and it was determined that a grave be dug in one of the cells for the reception of the body. Two stalwart laborers with pick and shovel made the attempt, but in an hour or two reported the difficulty of the work and a new site was selected. It was in the old store room of the building, which, being paved only with brick, facilitated the digging of a grave. After nightfall the body was removed from the wharf, after being placed in an ordnance or musket box or case, and carried into the penitentiary inclosure to the place prepared and buried without ceremony. There were present a representative of the War Department, who took the key of the room when the door had been closed; Col. Benton, the commandant, some of Baker’s men and three or four of the arsenal workmen.
When in 1867 the central portion of the penitentiary was about to be razed the remains were exhumed and placed in the north end of No. 1 storehouse of the arsenal.
In February, 1869, as the administration of President Johnson was drawing to a close, Edwin Booth secured from him an order for the body that it might be interred in the family lot at Greenmount cemetery, Baltimore. That day a Star reporter was approached by Mr. R. F. Harvey of Harvey and Marr, undertakers, who remarked:
“Don’t ask any questions, but be at our place at 6 o’clock this evening, as one of my assistants, and you will get a good item.”
Promised to Be There “I’ll be there,” was the response, and as the hour struck the reporter passed through the office to the workroom on the alley and there joined the workmen.
Mr. W. R. Speare, then a boy, had just entered the service of the firm to learn the business. An hour or so before Mr. Edwin Booth and Mr. J. H. Weaver, a Baltimore undertaker, were there consulting with Mr. Harvey, and the latter told Mr. Speare to go to the avenue and hire a furniture wagon to go to the arsenal to get something and to meet them at the arsenal gate. Mr. Speare did so. Messrs. Weaver and Harvey going down in a carriage. They proceeded to the store house and workmen brought out the box. Then it dawned upon Mr. Speare’s mind that the fact that the undertaker’s wagon was not taken was to ward off suspicion. A receipt was given to an officer and in a little time the wagon with the corpse was in the alley from which Booth had rode four years before. The little company in the shop were in waiting and the rumble of wheels was hailed with the remark, “There they are,” simultaneously with Rich Harvey’s call: “Come, here, now!” as the wagon was backed to a stable.
The box was removed by the assistants, including the volunteer, and placed on trestles, as was also an ordinary coffin brought from the shop. The arms chest was quite light. When a lantern had been produced the scene was a weird, uncanny one. The box was somewhat decayed about the joints, but when with little difficulty the lid was removed the blanket with which the corpse had been covered showed but little evidence of decay.
Blanket Thrown Aside The blanket on being thrown aside revealed what remained of the body and clothing. The latter was in shreds from decay, and the body was almost denuded of flesh and skin, some of the bones being bare.
Mr. Weaver seemed anxious that the remains be identified and picked up the head, examining it carefully. Some blotches of flesh and skin adhered to the cheek and jawbones, and the fine suit of hair for which Booth was noted was still on the head. Except for the mildew and clamminess it was in fine order, and the remark was made by some who had known Booth that it was an instance of hair growing after death, for it was an inch or more longer than it had been his custom to wear. The head was resting on decayed shavings, and one of the party plucked what he thought to be a loose lock of hair, which afterward was found to be a shaving. The head was taken up by Mr. Weaver, who examined it with interest, and a dentist from Baltimore being called from the front office in which Edwin Booth was awaiting developments next examined it. After looking intently at the teeth, he said: “This is Wilkes Booth, for this is some of my work.”
Head Passed Around The head was passed from hand to hand by the others, and Messrs. Weaver and Harvey examined other portions of the body, or, rather, what remained of it. The boots were found, one with one leg missing and a slit converting it to a shoe; and it was recalled that some of the witnesses before the military commission had testified that Booth had had one of his boots so cut to relieve the pressure on the leg in which he had a broken bone.
Edwin Booth having secured the report of the dentist, as well as that of Messrs. Weaver and Harvey as to the identification, left with the dentist. The sides of the blanket in which were the remains were lifted gently to the coffin, a temporary affair, and in a few hours they were in Baltimore, where they were interred at Greenmount. Of the company who were present when the transfer was made from box to coffin only Mr. Speare and the writer survive.
This statement should be sufficient to dispel all remaining doubts. Booth was recognized at the time he fired the shot, traced to the place of his capture, was known personally by some of the captors, his body identified by several as it laid at the navy yard. And, though a mystery surrounded the disposition of the body – and the current rumor was that it was buried at sea – The Star, the Monday following, announced the place of burial; and when the body, thirty-seven years ago, was disinterred and delivered to the family, the identification was complete.”
Some of you may have already noticed the new, fledging section to BoothieBarn.com: Picture Galleries! At the top of the page near the “About” tab is the link to this new feature:
Clicking on the link will take you to the new Picture Galleries part of the website:
Here you will find different galleries of images relating to the Lincoln assassination field. I’m hoping this section will become a great resource for those looking for images about the assassination. Currently, I only have four galleries up and running but I will be adding more as time goes on. After you click a specific person, place or thing, you will be taken to its corresponding gallery:
Clicking on a specific picture will open up a bigger version of the image, give you a short description of it, and source of the image if available.
As with many things in life, the Picture Galleries are works in progress. My hope is for this to be a community project. When I add a new gallery I will make a post announcing it. My hope is that any of you with pictures of the same subject matter will contribute your personal pictures as well. That way, together, we can create the best archive of Lincoln assassination imagery available.
So, I have four galleries up regarding Edman Spangler, Michael O’Laughlen, the Pine Thicket where Booth and Herold hid, and Booth’s Derringer. If you have any more pictures relating to these subjects feel free to email them in .jpg format to me at boothiebarn (at) gmail (dot) com. With any picture you send make sure to include a short description of it and its source.*
I’m excited about this new section to BoothieBarn and I hope it proves enjoyable and educational to you, too.
~ Dave Taylor
*By sending me your image, you are allowing your image to enter the public domain to be viewed and shared accordingly. You understand that I may put your image on my website (BoothieBarn.com) for everyone to see and that I don’t have control over what happens to it after that. I may not put up every picture sent to me, especially if it is low resolution or a duplicate.
The assassination of Abraham Lincoln manifested into countless front page headlines in newspapers across the country. From the details of the assassination, the hunt for Booth and his conspirators, and the trial that followed their arrests, nary a day went by between April 15th and July 7th, 1865, that aspects of Lincoln’s death were not “today’s top stories”. While significant and valuable text space was attributed to the big items of the assassination story, minor details had played out in the classified sections of various newspapers before the tragedy occurred. For a long time after the events as well, echos of the crime at Ford’s Theatre popped up in the most innocuous area of the newspaper - the advertisements. Here are a few examples of period advertisements associated with the death of Abraham Lincoln.
April 14th, 1865
Evening Star, Washington, D.C.
On page two of the Evening Star, the attendance of the Lincolns and General Grant is announced for that night’s performance of Our American Cousin at Ford’s Theatre.
November 25, 1864
New York Herald, New York City, NY
The New York Herald announces that night’s performance of the brother’s Booth in their benefit towards the construction of a statue of Shakespeare in Central Park.
August 18, 1869
Sun, Baltimore, MD
After being released from prison for the final time, John Harrison Surratt, Jr. made his way down into South America for about six months. Upon his return to America he tried his hand at the mercantile life with his own business selling tobacco and other commodities like the “slightly damaged” tea above. This business did not last long and about 18 months later, John Surratt would be a teacher in Rockville, MD.
January 3, 1871
Richmond Whig, Richmond, VA
Attempting to cash in on his story and connection to John Wilkes Booth, John Surratt underwent a lecture tour. His lecturing was as short-lived as his mercantile business due to public outcry.
June 15, 1864
Evening Star, Washington, D.C.
Here’s a good challenge for you all. Can any of you tell me how this sale of a schooner by the federal government is involved in the story of Lincoln’s assassination. Show me your skills by replying in the comment section below.
The Last Lincoln Conspirator by Andrew Jampoler