May 12, 2020
Grabbing the railing to steady himself, President Abraham Lincoln leaned forward to get a better view of the orchestra pit. As the fictional play unfolded on the stage below another all to real scenario was being written into history in his theater box.
At approximately 10:15 pm, John Wilkes Booth quietly opened the door to where the president, First Lady, and two guests were sitting. Completely undetected, the well-known actor raised his gun and pointed it at the president's head. Driven by his hatred for the man whose leadership defeated the South, Booth pulled the trigger. Lincoln’s hand grasped the American Flag decorating the Presidential Box as he fell. The President had succeeded in ending the institution of slavery that separated the country and called for Americans to now come together as one United States. For his efforts of unity, forgiveness, and equality for blacks, Lincoln was rewarded with a bullet to the head.
Major Henry Rathbone and his fiancée Clara Harris shared the Presidential Box as the Lincolns’ guests. The major immediately grabbed Booth, but the assassin broke free from his grip, slashing the officer with a knife. Booth turned to escape, jumping twelve feet down to the stage. Rathbone lunged at him as he jumped, throwing Booth off balance. This caused Booth's spur to become entangled in the American flag, sending the killer unceremoniously to the stage, shattering his leg in the same way as his dreams of an independent South lay shattered.
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