Photo of the Day: David Herold

David Edgar Herold was one of Booth’s primary conspirators and remained by the assassin’s side during the twelve day manhunt. At the Garretts’ tobacco barn, Davy finally surrendered to federal troops and Booth was shot and killed.  Davy was brought back to Washington, imprisoned, tried, convicted, and, finally, executed on July 7th, 1865 for his role in the conspiracy.

This photograph of Davy Herold, likely taken when he was still in school, was confiscated by government detectives, duplicated and used in federal wanted posters for Booth, Herold and John Surratt:
Top of wanted poster

Image Source: National Archives


Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: | 6 Comments

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6 thoughts on “Photo of the Day: David Herold

  1. Wonderfully sharp photos, Dave! Thanks ever so much for posting. I love the clarity of these photos – you can see that Davey has on a checked vest and plaid pants. He is also wearing what appears to be a hair ring on the pinky of his left hand. I believe that he was wearing a gold ring when he was captured as Hartranft lists it in the Letter Book as being returned to his sisters.

  2. Rich smyth

    Betty, after your post I had to enlarge the pic just to see the ring. What would indicate it may be a hair ring?

    • Rich, it does appear to possibly be a hair ring of sorts – one can see the gold band and then the “strip” of dark in the middle; much as a Victorian hair ring would appear; at least to me.

      • Laurie Verge

        If not a hair ring, then perhaps a black enamel band set in gold surrounds. Either could be symbols of mourning. I don’t remember when Davey’s father died, but such a ring would have been an appropriate remembrance.

  3. Kathy Canavan

    Nice photo layout, Dave.

  4. John C. Fazio


    My information is that Davy’s father died in October, 1864. Booth, obviously, became a father figure to him. On September 4, 1864, he quit his job as a pharmacy clerk, after which he was seen by numerous people in various places flashing wads of dough, indicating, again, Booth’s use of money and the promise of more to come to lure his pigeons. They soon paid dearly for their stupidity. Chester and Mathews had more brains.


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