Apr 13, 2013

The Booth Brothers

On April 14, 1865, just days after the end of the American Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln attended a play at Ford’s Theater in Washington, D.C. and was shot. He died the next day.

Before the assassination, John Wilkes Booth was well known as a stage actor. He was the son of a famous actor, Junius Brutus Booth, and two of his brothers, Edwin and Junius, Jr., were also actors. Edwin was more famous than John Wilkes, before the assassination.

Months before the assassination of Lincoln, Edwin Booth was on a train platform in New Jersey. A young man was waiting in line to buy a ticket. He was pushed up against the idle train car and as the train began to move, the lad fell into the gap between the platform and the train. Booth grabbed him by his coat collar and brought him safely back onto the platform.

The young man knew who Edwin Booth was, but it was a few months later that Edwin Booth learned that the young man, whose life he saved was Robert Lincoln, the oldest son of Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln. History suggests that Edwin was comforted by his deed as he was a staunch supporter of the North.