News and Highlights: From the Vault (April 2005)
On Friday, April 14, 1865, John Wilkes Booth assassinated President Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln died the following morning, and Booth's escape route is now well-known. At the time, Corporal Edwin Keay (Co. C and E, 91st New York), who was stationed at Fort McHenry, Baltimore, noted his own account of the event in his diary.
Saturday, April 15, 1865
Cloudy times and cloudy weather. Presdt. Lincoln & Secty Seward assassinated in Washington City. The Presdt reported dieing [sic]. J. Wilkes Booth reported as the assassin. the president reported as dieing [sic] at 7 1/4 this morning. the Booth brothers reported arrested as the assassinators of Lincoln & Seward, who are both reported as dead.
Maryland Manuscript Collection, #5433
Other accounts of Lincoln's Death
Writing in Easton, Maryland, former schoolteacher Leonidas Dodson devoted several pages of his journal to newspaper clippings and his own thoughts the Lincoln assassination. He wrote: It has been a day of sorrow such as is rarely experienced in a nation's history.
Papers of Leonidas Dodson
- Civil War-era manuscript collections
- Sterling Family Papers: Transcriptions of 62 letters primarily written by a Civil War Union officer's wife, Tillie Farquhar Sterling, with additional letters written by Tillie's husband, Will Sterling, and Tillie's mother, Anna Virginia ("A. V.") Farquhar. They detail daily life in wartime Maryland and offer interesting information from the perspective of two ordinary families during an extraordinary period of our nation's history.