Notes from the past…

And Samuel was there!

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If you’ve followed my blog for any length of time, you’ve probably figured out that I’m a big Abraham Lincoln fan. Anything “Abe” is simply fascinating to me! I read everything I can find about the man, including several blogs.

Perhaps my favorite blog is 21st Century Abe:

Lincoln was born two hundred years ago. Happy birthday Abe! But why are we in the 21st century still obsessed with this 19th-century man? We find Abe everywhere from advertising to political punditry. What does this popular Abe have to do with the historical Abe? 21st-Century Abe has six months to tackle these questions—starting February 12, 2009—and we need your answers. We’ve asked scholars and artists to get the ball rolling, but your responses will define 21st-Century Abe.

This blog is basically anything and everything Abraham Lincoln…from a 21st century angle.

Today’s 21st Century Abe post is really neat: Meet the lone surviving eye witness (1956) to the Lincoln Assassination!

This from Wikipedia:

Samuel James Seymour (c. 1860–April 14, 1956) was the last surviving person who had been present in Ford’s Theater the night of the assassination of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln on April 14, 1865. He lived in Arlington, Virginia in his later years.

At age five, Seymour’s godmother, Mrs. George S. Goldsboro, had taken him to see Our American Cousin. He claimed the two sat in the balcony on the side opposite Lincoln’s box. Seymour reported that ” I complained tearfully that I couldn’t get out of the coach because his shirt was torn-anything to delay the dread moment-but Sarah (nurse Sarah Cook) dug into her bag and found a big safety pin .”, I shook so hard from fright (earlier seen men with guns and seemed they were all pointed at him) (in Washington), it caused Sarah to accidentally stab him with the pin. he hollered “I’ve been shot! I’ve been shot!”. Once in the theater Seymour settled down, saw the President across the balcony as he was waving and smiling at people, Seymour said ” I began to get over the scared feeling I’d had ever since we arrived in Washington, but that was something I never should have done. all of a sudden a shot rang out-a shot that always will be remembered-and someone in the Presidents box screamed. I saw Lincoln slumped forward in his seat”. Seymour did not actually see the assassination but did witness Lincoln’s assassin John Wilkes Booth jump off the balcony and break his leg. In fact, he revealed that because he did not know Lincoln was shot or that Booth had shot him, his real concern was for Booth breaking his leg.(Fact|date=February 7, 1954 American weekly Magazine Section-New York Journal-American)

Two months before his death at age 96, he appeared on the CBS TV quiz show I’ve Got a Secret as a mystery subject, in an episode in which Lucille Ball made an unusual appearance as a guest panelist. Coincidentally, Seymour died ninety-one years to the day of Lincoln’s assassination.

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