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    [Abraham Lincoln]. Lincoln Assassination Letter by an unknown author. Three integral pages, 5" x 7.75", Ann Arbor [Michigan], April 16, [1865], to Captain Albert A. Day regarding the recent assassination of President Lincoln two days earlier: "The good man has gone to his reward & we now realize how much we loved him. Great & good he stands side by side with Washington." Usual folds; else fine.

    More Information:

    The letter begins: "A few days ago I was almost too happy to write - now the reverse for from the heights of joy to the depths of woe are we plunged. Yesterday was dark, so dark the clouds spread a pall over the sorrowful earth & dropped their tears. Father started for his appt. in the early morning, but came back soon with wet face & the news. It seems as if some personal affliction was resting heavily on us. The good man has gone to his reward & we now realize how much we loved him. Great & good he stands side by side with Washington."

    Lincoln was not the only target of the assassination plot. The conspirators had planned on murdering not only the president, but the vice president and the secretary of state as well. The assassin in charge of the murder of the vice president got drunk before the appointed time and failed to carry out the deed. Lewis Powell, however, had infiltrated the Seward home, but through the intervention of members of Seward's household, Powell was turned away, having only managed to cut Seward on his cheek. News of the attack on Seward spread and many, including the author of this letter, believed the secretary to be dead. He continues: "In assasinating [sic] Pres. Lincoln & Sec'y. Seward, this wretch Booth & his accomplices have placed the halters around the neck of their leaders for before, the impression was gaining ground that it would not risk there owing to the great kind heart of our dead 'Father of the people' & his pacific policy. The element of retribution is strong in Andy Johnson & we believe, more there will be a string of many necks. He is like Butler [presumably the author is here referring to General Benjamin Butler]. "

    The author is scandalized by the behavior of some of his neighbors when they receive the news: "Albert will you believe it? There are men & women in this town who hurrah-ed when they heard 'Pres. Lincoln is dead, by the hand of an assassin.' Mrs. Dr. Lewitt was one & she called the.children to help her cheer on her doorstep. A man hurrah'ed in Chicago, front of the Briggs house, & was send into eternity by a passer by who shot him down, dead. I cannot say I care. How this will strike the hearts of our soldiery & nerve their arms. We are up to fighting pitch here, but take a soldier with his gun in his hand, the fire & desire in his heart, accustomed to the sight of blood [?], what could he not do now? Yes! But it will not restore him. We begin to feel a little of this hate who has animated." Here the letter abruptly ends, leaving the author a complete mystery.

    Usual folds; else fine.



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    Auction Dates
    April, 2013
    11th Thursday
    Internet/Mail Bids: 8
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