Lincoln, Abraham (1809-1865) A Collection of Nine U.S. Military Telegraph Messages Related to Lincoln's Assassination. Washington, D.C.: Navy Yard, 14-15 April 1865. A series of nine handwritten United States Military Telegraph messages transcribed by telegraph operator Henry Harrison Atwater, on U.S. Military Telegraph stationery, received shortly after the attempted assassination of Abraham Lincoln and continuing through the night, including the capture of John Wilkes Booth, and military orders related to the assassination, minor imperfections, generally good, each 5 x 8 1/4 in.
1. "An attempt has been made this p.m. to assassinate the President & Secy of State--The parties may escape or attempt to escept down the Potomac."
2. 1:05 am "Stop all vessels going down the river & hold all persons on them till further orders an attempt has been made tonight to assassinate the President and secy of state hold all persons leaving Washington."
3. 1:10 am "Send the fastest vessel you have with the following message to Comdr. Parker."
4. 1:15 am "An attempt has this evening to assinate the President and Sec'y Seward. The President was shot through the head and Secy Seward had his throat cut in his own house. Both are in very dangerous condition. No further particulars. There is great excitement here."
5. 1:20 am "This is to certify that the above messages were sent by me at the time state on said messages--And at this time the greatest excitement prevales over Washington nearly every head is bowed down in sorrow."
6. 2:10 am "Remain on duty all night unless permission is given to close."
7. 8:00 am "President died at seven twenty two (7:22) this am"
8. 2:20 pm "If the military authorities arrest the murderer of the President and take him to the yard put him on a monitor & anchor her in the stream with strong guard on vessel--wharf--and in yard Call upon Comdt Marine Corps for guard--Have vessel immediately prepared ready to receive him at any hour day or night with necessary instructions he will be heavily ironed and so guarded as to prevent escape or injury to himself."
9. 2:20 pm "Barracks have extra strong and carefull guard ready for special service if called for by como. Montgomery Gideon Welles."
Provenance: The Estate of David Spinney.
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