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The failed conspiracy to kidnap President Lincoln in 1865, and the conspiracy to assassinate him which grew out of the first, drew a host of disparate people into their orbit. Among them was a Catholic schoolteacher named Anna F. Ward. …

boswellbaxter says:
Thanks, Kim! more
boswellbaxter says:
Sounds interesting! Let me know the next time you get to the Raleigh area! more
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On December 23, 1864, Louis Weichmann left his Washington, D.C., boardinghouse to do some Christmas shopping for gifts for his sisters. Instead, he was waylaid by history. Weichmann, age twenty-two, was employed in the War Department. In the fall of …

boswellbaxter says:
Yes, that’s what happens when you use the word “clause” in... more
Marcia Thompson says:
I assume the following, “Still, the Confederate clause” should,... more

As those who are familiar with the goings-on at Mary Surratt’s boardinghouse know, one of the more intriguing characters to pass through its doors was a veiled lady named Sarah Slater, a courier for the Confederate government who traveled on …

Anne Barnhill says:
Fascinating! Thanks! more
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Inspired by this pie chart about how to write a novel about Margaret Beaufort, Countess of Richmond, I decided to post a few of my own helpful pie charts on my Facebook page. As not everyone hangs out there, I’m …

Pam Benstead says:
Just read the “pie chart” postings. Very revealing! By the way,... more
Esther says:
IMO, Matt Baynton should play Henry VII when your ideas turn into a movie (hope... more

Mary Surratt’s Boarders

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In the fall of 1864, Mary Surratt, a widow from Prince George’s County, Maryland, moved to Washington, D.C. and opened her property at 541 H Street (the light-colored house below) to boarders. Mary’s late husband, John, had acquired the house years …

 

Two Letters from a Grieving Daughter

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Whatever one believes about the guilt or innocence of Mary Surratt, her daughter, Anna, is surely deserving of our sympathy. On July 6, 1865, she had been given the horrifying news that her mother would be executed; the following day, …

 

July 6-7, 1865

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On July 6, 1865, General John F. Hartranft, who had been placed in charge of Washington, D.C.’s Old Arsenal Prison, went from cell to cell, informing Mary Surratt, Lewis Powell (known at the time by his alias of Lewis Payne), …

 

Lincoln Remembered in Washington, D.C.

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It’s a beautiful spring evening in Washington, D.C., way too nice to be sitting in a hotel room, but I had a marvelous two days and wanted to talk about them while they were fresh in my mind. (Apologies for …

 

April 3, 1865: Richmond Falls, and John Surratt Departs

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One hundred and fifty years ago today, on April 3, 1865, Richmond, Virginia, the capital of the Confederacy, fell to the Union. The day before, Jefferson Davis and his cabinet had fled the city, having authorized the burning of warehouses …

 

A Petition to Rebury Anne Boleyn

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With Richard III in his final resting place, things have become rather quiet lately, leading me to turn my thoughts to another controversial royal: Anne Boleyn. Anne, of course, was briefly exhumed in the nineteenth century during renovations in the …