July 7, 1865
While many might know that John Wilkes Booth assassinated President Abraham Lincoln on April 14, 1865, many do not know the nine others who were connected in some way to the conspiracy. Out of those nine, Lewis Powell, Mary Surratt, David Herold, and George Atzerodt died by hanging on July 7, 1865, around 1:15 pm after being convicted of conspiring to kill the president. One of those four, Lewis Powell (alias: Lewis Paine), also hanged for his crime of the attempted murder of the Secretary of State William Seward. Until the last moment, family members pleaded for the lives of these four legendary criminals, and legal support, especially for Mary, sought all avenues of appeal for their release. These documents display the written conviction of the four sentenced to death, and the Chicago Tribune’s account of the event up to and during the executions. This brief, yet haunting, account of their executions displays their dedication to the Confederate cause. History shows that had the Confederacy won, these four would have found fame and not nooses around their necks.