June 22, 1865

Thursday, June 22, 1865

Previous Session       Trial Home       Next Session

The court did not meet on this day to give Thomas Ewing time to finish his closing arguments in the cases of Samuel Arnold, Dr. Mudd, and against the jurisdiction of the court.

As had been officially started on June 20th, each of the conspirators were given their daily time outside of their cells in the open air.[1]


From General Kautz’ diary:

“The Commission not being in session I have had a day of leisure.”[2]

Benjamin Perley Poore was a newspaper editor who published his own transcripts of the trial in 1865 and 1866. In his memoirs, published in 1886, Poore briefly touched on the trial and gave the following description of the conspirators.

“The male prisoners, heavily ironed, were seated side by side in a dock interspersed with officers. Sam Arnold was of respectable appearance, about thirty years of age, with dark hair and beard and a good countenance. Spangler, the stage-carpenter, was a chunky, light-haired, rather bloated and whisky-soaked looking man. Atzerott had a decided lager beer look, with heavy blue eyes, light hair, and sallow complexion. O’Laughlin might have been taken for a native of Cuba, short and slender, with luxuriant black locks, a delicate moustache and whiskers, and vivacious black eyes. Payne was the incarnation of a Roman gladiator, tall, muscular, defiant, with a low forehead, large blue eyes, thin lips, and black, straight hair, with much of the animal and little of the intellectual. Dave Harold was what the ladies call a pretty little man, with cherry cheeks, pouting lips, an incipient beard, dark hazel eyes, and dark, long hair. Last on the bench was Dr. Mudd, whose ankles and wrists were joined by chains instead of the unyielding bars which joined the bracelets and anklets of the others. He was about sixty [sic] years of age, with a blonde complexion, reddish face, and blue eyes.”[3]

Previous Session        Trial Home       Next Session

[1] John F. Hartranft, The Lincoln Assassination Conspirators: Their Confinement and Execution, as Recorded in the Letterbook of John Frederick Hartranft, ed. Edward Steers, Jr. and Harold Holzer (Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State University Press, 2009), 129.
[2] August V. Kautz, June 22, 1865 diary entry (Unpublished diary: Library of Congress, August V. Kautz Papers).
[3] Benjamin Perley Poore, Perley’s Reminiscences of Sixty Years in the National Metropolis, Vol. II (Philadelphia, PA: Hubbard Brothers, 1886), 185 – 186.

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: