The Trial Today: May 16

Here’s a sample of what occurred on this day in the Lincoln conspiracy trial:

  • The commission met at Ford’s Theatre and took a tour of the scene of the crime
  • The railing in front of the prisoners’ dock was extended and Mary Surratt was put on an elevated stand with the other conspirators
  • Testimony continued trying to show that Michael O’Laughlen had lied in wait for General Grant at Secretary of War Edwin Stanton’s home
  • More witnesses described Edman Spangler’s interactions with John Wilkes Booth on the night of the assassination
  • The bullet and gun that killed President Lincoln were entered into evidence
  • The first witnesses against Dr. Samuel Mudd took the stand

The May 16, 1865 entry for the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators is now released and has more information. Please click here to access it. You can also access it through The Trial homepage.


Throughout May and June of 2020, I am publishing a day by day chronology of the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators. This includes almost daily posts announcing the release of what happened at the conspiracy trial 155 years ago. For more information about the creation of this project please click here.

Categories: History | Tags: | 1 Comment

The Trial Today: May 15

Here’s a sample of what occurred on this day in the Lincoln conspiracy trial:

  • Mary Surratt was moved to a seat closer to the rest of the conspirators
  • Edman Spangler finally found representation on this date
  • The carbine rifle John Wilkes Booth and David Herold picked up at the Surratt Tavern and the knife Booth used to stab Major Rathbone at Ford’s Theatre were entered into evidence
  • The prosecution brought forth witnesses trying to prove Michael O’Laughlen had contact with John Wilkes Booth on the 13th or 14th of April while he visited D.C. with friends
  • Secretary of War Edwin Stanton’s nephew testified that O’Laughlen was present near his uncle’s home on April 13th and inquired about General Grant who was visiting
  • Several witnesses testified against Edman Spangler and his actions at Ford’s Theatre

The May 15, 1865 entry for the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators is now released and has more information. Please click here to access it. You can also access it through The Trial homepage.


Throughout May and June of 2020, I am publishing a day by day chronology of the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators. This includes almost daily posts announcing the release of what happened at the conspiracy trial 155 years ago. For more information about the creation of this project please click here.

Categories: History | Tags: | 2 Comments

The Trial Today: May 13

Here’s a sample of what occurred on this day in the Lincoln conspiracy trial:

  • Additional defense attorneys were admitted
  • Many items found in George Atzerodt’s rented room at the Kirkwood House hotel were entered into evidence
  • Louis Weichmann and John M. Lloyd, the government’s key witnesses against Mary Surratt, took the stand for the first time
  • Outside press and visitors were finally allowed into the court. They provided some of the first detailed accounts of the conspirators’ appearances and the goings on in the court

The May 13, 1865 entry for the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators is now released and has more information. Please click here to access it. You can also access it through The Trial homepage.


Throughout May and June of 2020, I am publishing a day by day chronology of the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators. This includes almost daily posts announcing the release of what happened at the conspiracy trial 155 years ago. For more information about the creation of this project please click here.

Categories: History | Tags: | 3 Comments

The Trial Today: May 12

Here’s a sample of what occurred on this day in the Lincoln conspiracy trial:

  • The defense attorneys made their first attempt arguing against the jurisdiction of the military commission
  • The first prosecution witnesses took the stand even though only three of the conspirators had any representation
  • Much of the testimony dealt with evidence that official agents of the Confederacy had plotted Lincoln’s assassination with John Wilkes Booth and the conspirators
  • General Ulysses S. Grant testified

The May 12, 1865 entry for the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators is now released and has more information. Please click here to access it. You can also access it through The Trial homepage.


Throughout May and June of 2020, I am publishing a day by day chronology of the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators. This includes almost daily posts announcing the release of what happened at the conspiracy trial 155 years ago. For more information about the creation of this project please click here.

Categories: History | Tags: | 1 Comment

The Trial Today: May 11

Here’s a sample of what occurred on this day in the Lincoln conspiracy trial:

  • The first defense attorneys were admitted for Dr. Mudd and Mrs. Surratt

The May 11, 1865 entry for the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators is now released and has more information. Please click here to access it. You can also access it through The Trial homepage.


Throughout May and June of 2020, I am publishing a day by day chronology of the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators. This includes almost daily posts announcing the release of what happened at the conspiracy trial 155 years ago. For more information about the creation of this project please click here.

Categories: History | Tags: | Leave a comment

The Trial Today: May 10

Here’s a sample of what occurred on this day in the Lincoln conspiracy trial:

  • Two of the military commissioners, one of whom was very vocal in his criticism of the commission, were replaced
  • The first court reporters were sworn in
  • The conspirators were officially arraigned on the charge and specification against them
  • The rules of the court were established

This date also marks the first appearance of artwork by historical illustrator and cartoonist, Jackie Roche. I’ve been a fan of Jackie’s work since we first “met” in 2014, following the publication of one of her comics that highlighted the experiences of the Petersen House boarder who lived in the room where Lincoln died, Willie Clark. Jackie is not only a talented artist but also a devoted historian. She thoroughly researches every topic she creates art for and includes footnotes in her comics. Jackie was kind enough to create six different images for this project demonstrating the six different seating arrangements the conspirators went through during the trial. Please visit her website to see more of her amazing work. Her comic on the forgotten people who lived at Arlington House, in what is now Arlington National Cemetery, is one of my favorite pieces.

The May 10, 1865 entry for the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators is now released and has more information. Please click here to access it. You can also access it through The Trial homepage.


Throughout May and June of 2020, I am publishing a day by day chronology of the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators. This includes almost daily posts announcing the release of what happened at the conspiracy trial 155 years ago. For more information about the creation of this project please click here.

Categories: History | Tags: | 8 Comments

The Trial Today: May 9

Here’s a sample of what occurred on this day in the Lincoln conspiracy trial:

  • The trial officially convened for the first time
  • The conspirators were brought into the court room wearing the hoods they were forced to wear while imprisoned, much to the distaste of the commissioners

The May 9, 1865 entry for the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators is now released and has more information. Please click here to access it. You can also access it through The Trial homepage.


Throughout May and June of 2020, I am publishing a day by day chronology of the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators. This includes almost daily posts announcing the release of what happened at the conspiracy trial 155 years ago. For more information about the creation of this project please click here.

Categories: History | Tags: | 2 Comments

The Trial Today: May 8

Here’s a sample of what occurred on this day in the Lincoln conspiracy trial:

  • Some of the military officers met in the courtroom for the first time
  • The conspirators first heard the charge and specification against them in their cells at the Old Arsenal Penitentiary

The May 8, 1865 entry for the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators is now released and has more information. Please click here to access it. You can also access it through The Trial homepage.


Throughout May and June of 2020, I am publishing a day by day chronology of the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators. This includes almost daily posts announcing the release of what happened at the conspiracy trial 155 years ago. For more information about the creation of this project please click here.

Categories: History | Tags: | Leave a comment

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