Thursday, March 05, 2015

Lincoln's 2nd Inaugural Address -- March 4, 1865

One of three photos of the event by Alexander Gardner
"In a print made about 1920 from an original photograph by Alexander Gardner, President Lincoln is seen reading his inaugural address before the crowd on the east portico of the Capitol. This is one of three photographs taken March 4, 1865, by Alexander Gardner. Above Lincoln, to the right and behind an iron railing, stands John Wilkes Booth, though he cannot be seen clearly in this photograph. In only one of the photographs, that in the Meserve Collection in the National Portrait Gallery, is Booth visible. He has a mustache and is wearing a top hat. Five of the other conspirators in Lincoln's assassination stand just below the president. Looking at a detail of the figures behind the railing in the photograph presented here reveals a man with a mustache holding a top hat in his hand who could well be John Wilkes Booth.

For a discussion of the three photographs and the identity of Booth and the conspirators, see Dorothy Meserve Kunhardt and Philip B. Kunhardt Jr., Twenty Days (San Bernardino, California: Borgo Press, 1985), pp. [30]-37."


A11.) Harold Holzer, Lincoln in the Times pp. 221-2. [this passage thanks to Vermont Humanities, Civil War Book of Days

Brooks Simpson at Crossroads collected together some Library of Congress images of the speech itself, to commemorate a masterpiece of presidential oratory.

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