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EIU Teaching with Primary Sources

Follow the Evidence: The Trial of the Lincoln Conspirators

Lincoln CSI

Samuel Arnold

Evidence | Prosecution | Defense | Verdict | 
April 14, 1865 | The Conspirators

Lincoln CSI

Before the plan to assassinate the president, John Wilkes Booth planned to kidnap the president in return for confederate prisoners and a large sum of money. In the summer of 1864, Booth enrolled Samuel Arnold, an old school friend, to assist in his plan to kidnap President Lincoln. The kidnapping was to take place while Lincoln attended a play at Campbell Hospital. When President Lincoln cancelled his appearance the kidnapping plot fell through. Samuel Arnold was charged with being part of Booth's earlier plan to kidnap the president.

Washington Navy Yard, D.C.
Samuel Arnold, a conspirator
Library of Congress
Prints and Photographs


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