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First report of Lincoln shot: he's still alive... On the front page...
Item # 604072
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April 15, 1865
PUBLIC LEDGER, Philadelphia, April 15, 1865 The front page has considerable reporting on one of the more notable and collectible events of the 19th century, the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln.
In the sixth of seven columns are heads: "A Crime
Without A Name" "Assassination of the President of the U.S." "Attempted Murder of The Secretary of State" "No Hope For The President's Life" "Escape Of The Assassins" followed by extensive coverage, giving the latest information as was known by press time.
The reporting begins: "The President of the United States was shot, while attending at Ford's Theatre tonight. It is feared that the wounds are mortal." Following this is a subhead: "The Particulars" and further news: "President Lincoln and his wife, together with other friends, this evening visited Ford's Theatre for the purpose of witnessing the performance of the 'American Cousin'..." with more. See the photos for the full text. Among the reports is: "...During the third Act...the sharp report of a pistol was heard...a man rushed to the front of the President's box waving a long dagger...and exclaiming Sic Semper Tyrannis and immediately leaped from the box...to the stage beneath ran to the opposite side..." and more.
There are further subheads and details of the assassination printed as the news arrives at the printing office, and it is interesting that Lincoln was still alive by time this newspaper went to press. One report notes: "...It is now 12:30 and the excitement has not abated in the least; crowds are everywhere and the whole city is in the streets." A dispatch timed at "2:30 a.m." notes: "The President is still alive, but is growing weaker. The ball is lodged in his brain, three inches from where it entered the skull. He remains insensible and his condition is utterly hopeless...". The last dispatch is noted as "3 a.m." and includes: "The President still breathes, but is quite insensible, as he has been ever since he was shot. He evidently did not see the person who shot him, but was looking on the stages as he was approached behind...Investigation strongly indicates J. Wilkes Booth as the assassin of the President...Every exertion has been made to prevent the escape of the murderer..." and more.
The top of the fifth column on the front page has some editorial reporting on the assassination, headed: "A Crime Without A Name" with much interesting content (see).
Great to have such detailed reporting---and very early as Lincoln was still alive at press time---not only on the front page but from a city very close to Washington. Complete as a four page newspaper, never bound nor trimmed, a few minor tape mends to page 2 margins, minimal edge wear. A nice newspaper.