History

The Trial Today: June 13

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

  • There was more debate over one of the dubious letters entered into evidence
  • A break was taken so that Lewis Powell could be examined by a physician to judge his mental health
  • Samuel Arnold visited with his father in the courtroom
  • Two people formerly enslaved by Mrs. Surratt testified on her behalf
  • Frederick Aiken cross-examined John M. Lloyd, one of the government’s main witnesses against Mrs. Surratt
  • Maj. Eckert, Chief of the War Department Telegraph office, took the stand for a fifth day, the most of any witness
  • Edman Spangler’s defense was reopened by Thomas Ewing as he recalled one of Spangler’s coworkers, John DeBonay
  • Frederick Aiken announced his case for Mrs. Surratt was complete

The June 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.

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The Trial Today: June 12

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

  • Two defense witnesses recounted how Lewis Powell saved the lives of Union soldiers in December of 1864
  • One of Michael O’Laughlen’s friends reiterated that O’Laughlen never got close to Edwin Stanton’s home and was partying with the group during almost the entirety of April 13th and 14th
  • Frederick Aiken, Mrs. Surratt’s attorney, announced that he had traveled into Southern Maryland and found additional witnesses he wished to call but were not present on this day
  • The 1864 explosion at a Union headquarters in City Point, Virginia was found to be a result of a Confederate plot
  • The prosecution attempted to restore the beleaguered reputation of witness Marcus Norton
  • Several of the male conspirators entered the courtroom with hair cuts and shaved faces

The June 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: June 10

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

  • Dr. Mudd’s future son-in-law testified that he heard on April 15th that it was Edwin Booth who had shot Lincoln
  • Some of the defense attorneys announced that their cases were closed or almost closed
  • William Doster stated he was still having difficulty procuring important witnesses for Lewis Powell, especially members of his family from Florida
  • The Confederate raid on St. Albans, Vermont was discussed
  • Another Union soldier testified about the conditions he faced as a prisoner of war at Andersonville Prison in Georgia
  • All of the male conspirators except for Lewis Powell were finally freed from having to wear padded hoods while in their cells

The June 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: | Leave a comment

The Trial Today: June 9

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

  • The commissioners and prosecution gathered for a photograph before court opened
  • Further efforts to discredit the reputations of prosecution witnesses Marcus Norton and Daniel Thomas were made
  • Dr. Mudd’s sister took the stand to testify about her brother’s whereabouts
  • Honora Fitzpatrick, one of Mary Surratt’s boarders, testified that even she did not recognize Lewis Powell at first when he arrived at the boardinghouse on the night of April 17th
  • Two of David Herold’s sisters were called to testify as defense witnesses for Dr. Mudd
  • Supporting testimony was heard regarding the words Jefferson Davis allegedly said upon hearing the news of Lincoln’s assassination
  • Defense lawyer Thomas Ewing and prosecution lawyer John Bingham sparred over Ewing’s claim to have “flanked” the government earlier in the trial
  • The government allowed the words Dr. Mudd used in relating to his suspicious visitors to be entered into the record
  • Noted orator Anna Dickinson visited the trial for the second time

The June 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: | 1 Comment

The Trial Today: June 8

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

  • A Maryland provost marshal discredited a prosecution witness’s claim of having warned the authorities about Dr. Mudd before the assassination
  • George Atzerodt’s neighbors in Port Tobacco testified about his whereabouts and his lack of courage
  • The court approved the arrests of several defense witnesses who had ignored their summons to appear
  • Two of Dr. Mudd’s neighbors recounted how the doctor told them about Lincoln’s assassination at the hands of Booth on April 15th
  • Testimony regarding clandestine Confederate activity burning Union boats was heard
  • Marcus Norton, one of the more questionable witnesses against Dr. Mudd, George Atzerodt, and Michael O’Laughlen was recalled for intense cross-examination

The June 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

The Trial Today: June 7

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

  • Many sparks flew between the prosecution and defense attorneys
  • Thomas Ewing criticized the government for having lost a piece of evidence and for presenting spurious letters not in any way proven to be connected to the conspirators
  • Assistant Judge Advocate John Bingham countered that the charge cited all conspirators that were known and not known, supporting the government’s right to enter the letters into evidence
  • The debate over whether to strike a piece of evidence from the record got so lively, a woman fainted in the courtroom
  • The youngest known witness, a 13 year-old boy named Minnie, took the stand
  • Rebuttal witnesses for the prosecution worked to revive the reputation of Louis Weichmann
  • One of the commissioners came to the defense of a secret society
  • By working together and using legal maneuvers, Frederick Aiken, lawyer for Mrs. Surratt, and Thomas Ewing, lawyer for Dr. Mudd, Arnold, and Spangler, managed to eke out a minor victory against the prosecution much to the vocal dismay of the assistant judge advocates
  • Mary Surratt’s brother returned to the stand to defend his loyalty to the Union
  • It was brought out that one of the defense witnesses had been tried for murder
  • Anna Surratt, Mary Surratt’s daughter, returned to the stand to explain the Confederate images found at the Surratt boardinghouse belonged to her, not her mother
  • One of the newspaper reporters wrote a poem about Dr. Mudd’s chances

The June 7, 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: June 6

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

  • It was a Mudd-centric day at the trial
  • The prosecution witness who claimed Dr. Mudd threatened the lives of Lincoln, his cabinet, and all Union men in Maryland in March of 1865, was recalled by the defense and asked about his work attempting to procure reward money for his testimony
  • Dr. Mudd’s actions when the authorities came to his house were discussed
  • More relatives established Dr. Mudd was on his farm when two questionable prosecution witnesses placed him in Washington
  • Dr. Mudd’s visit to D.C. on March 22nd and 23rd were documented by defense witnesses
  • The detective who arrested Samuel Arnold testified once again
  • Dr. Mary Walker, a ground breaking surgeon during the Civil War and the only female winner of the Medal of Honor, visited the courtroom wearing pants, much to the amusement of some of the male prisoners

The June 6, 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: June 5

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

  • A questionable prosecution witness attempted to place Dr. Mudd in Washington in early March
  • The loyalty and reliability of Mary Surratt’s brother was brought into question
  • Some of Dr. Mudd’s relatives and servants reiterated that the doctor was on his farm throughout the first week of March
  • Another dubious letter written in code was entered into evidence
  • William Wood, the man who would become the first director of the United States Secret Service one month from this date, testified
  • Many residents of Charles County came to Dr. Mudd’s defense in stating that the identity of Lincoln’s assassin was not known for certainty on April 15th
  • The court was cleared of visitors to discuss the accidental publication of the previously withheld testimony from the first days of the trial
  • Ward Hill Lamon, the one time protector of President Lincoln, visited the court

The June 5, 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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