May 10, the day of the assassins

I don’t subscribe to any conspiracy theories although I always try to keep an open mind. And I am not about to start a new conspiracy theory. However most, if not all, conspiracy theories have an element of truth in them.

In the movie ‘Conspiracy Theory’ the character Jerry Fletcher, played by Mel Gibson says this:

“- Jerry Fletcher: Serial killers only have two names. You ever notice that? But lone gunmen assassins, they always have three names. John Wilkes Booth, Lee Harvey Oswald, Mark David Chapman. Alice Sutton: John Hinckley. He shot Reagan. He only has two names.

Jerry Fletcher: Yeah, but he only just shot Reagan. Reagan didn’t die. If Reagan had died, I’m pretty sure we probably would all know what John Hinckley’s middle name was.”

He was wrong about the serial killers bit. One of the most prolific serial killers was executed on May 10,1994.

John Wayne Gacy, (born March 17, 1942, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.—died May 10, 1994, Statesville, Illinois), serial killer whose murders of 33 boys and young men in the 1970s received international media attention and shocked his suburban Chicago community, where he was known for his sociability and his performance as a clown at charitable events and children’s parties. He had 3 names.

The character Jerry Fletcher was right about the lone gunmen assassins, even about John Hinckley. His full name was John Warnock Hinckley.

He also mentioned Lee Harvey Oswald, John Wiles Booth and Mark David Chapman.

Lee Harvey Oswald received a certificate as sharp shooter, or sniper, with the US Marines sometimes before the 13th of May in 1959. He was classified in a scale of marksman–sharpshooter–expert.777.

The other 2 assassins mentioned were both born on May 10th.

The stage actor John Wilkes Booth was born on May 10, 1838

On the morning of Good Friday, April 14, 1865, Booth went to Ford’s Theatre to get his mail. While there, he was told that the President Lincoln and his wife would be attending the play Our American Cousin at Ford’s Theatre that evening, accompanied by Gen. and Mrs. Ulysses S. Grant.

Booth entered Ford’s Theater at 10:10 pm. In the theater, he slipped into Lincoln’s box at around 10:14 p.m. as the play progressed and shot the President in the back of the head with a .41 caliber Deringer pistol.

Booth was killed on April 26,1865 by Sergeant Boston Corbett.

Mark David Chapman was born May 10,1955, in Fort Worth Texas.

On December 8, 1980 Mark David Chapman killed John Lennon. He was a fan of John Lennon and a few hours before he killed Lennon, he had approached him already carrying a copy of John Lennon’s album “Double Fantasy”

Amateur photographer Paul Goresh was nearby and took a picture as Lennon signed the album. Chapman said in an interview that he tried to get Goresh to stay, and he asked another close by John Lennon fan to go out with him that night. He suggested that he would not have murdered Lennon that evening if the girl had accepted his invitation or if Goresh had stayed, but he probably would have tried another day.

That was such a cowardly thing to say, trying to put some of the blame on others.

John Hinckley and Mark David Chapman both had a copy of the 1951 novel The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger.

Chapman identified with the novel’s narrator to the extent that he wanted to change his name to Holden Caulfield. On the night he shot Lennon, Chapman was found with a copy of the book in which he had written “This is my statement” and signed Holden’s name. Later, he read a passage from the novel to address the court during his sentencing.

After John Hinckley, Jr.’s assassination attempt on Ronald Reagan in 1981, police found The Catcher in the Rye in his hotel room. Hinckley later admitted to being an admirer of Chapman and studying his attempt on John Lennon. Hinckley’s possession of the novel was later dismissed as an influence, as a half dozen various other types of books were also discovered in his possession.

Another murderer ,Robert John Bardo, who murdered actress Rebecca Schaeffer, was carrying the book when he visited Schaeffer’s apartment in Hollywood on July 18, 1989 where he murdered her.

So May 10th which has the birth of at least 2 murderers/assassins and the death of one serial killer can probably be called “The day of the assassins”

source

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0118883/

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US registered patent No. 6,469

PATENT

On March 10,1849, a 40 year old inventor filed  an application for a patent relating to an invention to lift boats over shoals and obstructions in a river.

The patent was registered today 170 years ago on May 22,1849. The inventor was none other than Abraham Lincoln.

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“Be it known that I, Abraham Lincoln, of Springfield, in the county of Sangamon, in the state of Illinois, have invented a new and improved manner of combining adjustable buoyant air chambers with a steam boat or other vessel for the purpose of enabling their draught of water to be readily lessened to enable them to pass over bars, or through shallow water, without discharging their cargoes;”

Lincoln’s patent ends with this claim,

“What I claim as my invention and desire to secure by letters patent is the combination of expansible buoyant chambers placed at the sides of a vessel with the main shaft or shafts C by means of the sliding spars or shafts D which pass down through the buoyant chambers and are made fast to their bottoms and the series of ropes and pullies or their equivalents in such a manner that by turning the main shaft or shafts in one direction the buoyant chambers will be forced downwards into the water and at the same time expanded and filled with air for buoying up the vessel by the displacement of water and by turning the shaft in an opposite direction the buoyant chambers will be contracted into a small space and secured against injury.”

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The invention was never produced for practical use.There were doubts it would have actually worked.

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When Heroes weren’t so Heroic

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We all have heroes and that is important, you need someone to look up to. But Heroes are human beings like anyone else and sometimes they say or do things that are not so heroic.

Following are some examples where some heroes said something very un-heroic.Some of these will really surprise you.

John Lennon, on his son

“I can’t stand the way you fucking laugh! Never let me hear your fucking horrible laugh again.” — Lennon screaming at his son, Julian, while the latter was a boy and helping his mother make pancakes

“I’m not going to lie to Julian. Ninety percent of the people on this planet, especially in the West, were born out of a bottle of whiskey on a Saturday night, and there was no intent to have children. So 90 percent of us — that includes everybody — were accidents…Julian is in the majority, along with me and everybody else. Sean is a planned child, and therein lies the difference.” — Lennon, describing the difference between his first son, Julian, and his second son, Sean

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Abraham Lincoln, on racial equality

“And in as much as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race.”

“I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races.”

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Roald Dahl, on Jewish people

“There is a trait in the Jewish character that does provoke animosity; maybe it’s a kind of lack of generosity towards non-Jews. I mean there is always a reason why anti-anything crops up anywhere; even a stinker like Hitler didn’t just pick on them for no reason.”
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Martin Luther King Jr., on domestic abuse

“I would suggest that you analyze the whole situation and see if there is anything within your personality that arouses this tyrannical response from your husband.” — King’s advice for a woman who asked him for help because her husband was abusive to her and their kids

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Mahatma Gandhi, on black Africans

“Ours is one continual struggle against a degradation sought to be inflicted upon us by the Europeans, who desire to degrade us to the level of the raw Kaffir [a slur for black Africans that is now classified as hate speech and generally considered to be the equivalent of “nigger” in the United States] whose occupation is hunting, and whose sole ambition is to collect a certain number of cattle to buy a wife with and, then, pass his life in indolence and nakedness.”

“Kaffirs are as a rule uncivilised—the convicts even more so. They are troublesome, very dirty and live almost like animals.”

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The other side of Abraham Lincoln

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No one in their right mind will argue that Abraham Lincoln was one of the greatest states men in US and World History.

However his moral values weren’t as pure as many people think they were. But in my view that probably makes him even a greater leader then he has been given credit for. For he made decision although it did go against his moral fiber, but he made them for the greater good.

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Just to disperse one myth he was never a vampire slayer.

On September 22 1862, Abraham Lincoln issued his preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, in which he declared that as of January 1, 1863, all slaves in states in rebellion against the Union “shall be then, thenceforward, and forever free.

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In 1842, Abraham Lincoln married Mary Todd, Mary was born in Lexington, Kentucky as the fourth of seven children of Robert Smith Todd, a banker, and Elizabeth (Parker) Todd.Her family were slaveholders, and Mary was raised in comfort and refinement.

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Lincoln wasn’t an abolitionist.

Lincoln did believe that slavery was morally wrong, but there was one big problem: It was sanctioned by the highest law in the land, the Constitution. The nation’s founding fathers, who also struggled with how to address slavery, did not explicitly write the word “slavery” in the Constitution, but they did include key clauses protecting the institution, including a fugitive slave clause and the three-fifths clause, which allowed Southern states to count slaves for the purposes of representation in the federal government. In a three-hour speech in Peoria, Illinois, in the fall of 1854, Lincoln presented more clearly than ever his moral, legal and economic opposition to slavery—and then admitted he didn’t know exactly what should be done about it within the current political system.

Abolitionists, by contrast, knew exactly what should be done about it: Slavery should be immediately abolished, and freed slaves should be incorporated as equal members of society. They didn’t care about working within the existing political system, or under the Constitution, which they saw as unjustly protecting slavery and slave owners. Leading abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison called the Constitution “a covenant with death and an agreement with Hell,” and went so far as to burn a copy at a Massachusetts rally in 1854. Though Lincoln saw himself as working alongside the abolitionists on behalf of a common anti-slavery cause, he did not count himself among them. Only with emancipation, and with his support of the eventual 13th Amendment, would Lincoln finally win over the most committed abolitionists.

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Lincoln didn’t believe blacks should have the same rights as whites.

Though Lincoln argued that the founding fathers’ phrase “All men are created equal” applied to blacks and whites alike, this did not mean he thought they should have the same social and political rights. His views became clear during an 1858 series of debates with his opponent in the Illinois race for U.S. Senate, Stephen Douglas, who had accused him of supporting “negro equality.” In their fourth debate, at Charleston, Illinois, on September 18, 1858, Lincoln made his position clear. “I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races,” he began, going on to say that he opposed blacks having the right to vote, to serve on juries, to hold office and to intermarry with whites. What he did believe was that, like all men, blacks had the right to improve their condition in society and to enjoy the fruits of their labor. In this way they were equal to white men, and for this reason slavery was inherently unjust.

Like his views on emancipation, Lincoln’s position on social and political equality for African-Americans would evolve over the course of his presidency. In the last speech of his life, delivered on April 11, 1865, he argued for limited black suffrage, saying that any black man who had served the Union during the Civil War should have the right to vote.

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Lincoln thought colonization could resolve the issue of slavery.

For much of his career, Lincoln believed that colonization—or the idea that a majority of the African-American population should leave the United States and settle in Africa or Central America—was the best way to confront the problem of slavery. His two great political heroes, Henry Clay and Thomas Jefferson, had both favored colonization; both were slave owners who took issue with aspects of slavery but saw no way that blacks and whites could live together peaceably. Lincoln first publicly advocated for colonization in 1852, and in 1854 said that his first instinct would be “to free all the slaves, and send them to Liberia” (the African state founded by the American Colonization Society in 1821).

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Nearly a decade later, even as he edited the draft of the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation in August of 1862, Lincoln hosted a delegation of freed slaves at the White House in the hopes of getting their support on a plan for colonization in Central America. Given the “differences” between the two races and the hostile attitudes of whites towards blacks, Lincoln argued, it would be “better for us both, therefore, to be separated.” Lincoln’s support of colonization provoked great anger among black leaders and abolitionists, who argued that African-Americans were as much natives of the country as whites, and thus deserved the same rights. After he issued the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, Lincoln never again publicly mentioned colonization, and a mention of it in an earlier draft was deleted by the time the final proclamation was issued in January 1863.

Emancipation was a military policy.

As much as he hated the institution of slavery, Lincoln didn’t see the Civil War as a struggle to free the nation’s 4 million slaves from bondage. Emancipation, when it came, would have to be gradual, and the important thing to do was to prevent the Southern rebellion from severing the Union permanently in two. But as the Civil War entered its second summer in 1862, thousands of slaves had fled Southern plantations to Union lines, and the federal government didn’t have a clear policy on how to deal with them. Emancipation, Lincoln saw, would further undermine the Confederacy while providing the Union with a new source of manpower to crush the rebellion.

In July 1862 the president presented his draft of the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation to his cabinet. Secretary of State William Seward urged him to wait until things were going better for the Union on the field of battle, or emancipation might look like the last gasp of a nation on the brink of defeat. Lincoln agreed and returned to edit the draft over the summer. On September 17 the bloody Battle of Antietam gave Lincoln the opportunity he needed. He issued the preliminary proclamation to his cabinet on September 22, and it was published the following day. As a cheering crowd gathered at the White House, Lincoln addressed them from a balcony: “I can only trust in God I have made no mistake … It is now for the country and the world to pass judgment on it.”

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The Emancipation Proclamation didn’t actually free all of the slaves.

Since Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation as a military measure, it didn’t apply to border slave states like Delaware, Maryland, Kentucky and Missouri, all of which had remained loyal to the Union. Lincoln also exempted selected areas of the Confederacy that had already come under Union control in hopes of gaining the loyalty of whites in those states. In practice, then, the Emancipation Proclamation didn’t immediately free a single slave, as the only places it applied were places where the federal government had no control—the Southern states currently fighting against the Union.

Despite its limitations, Lincoln’s proclamation marked a crucial turning point in the evolution of Lincoln’s views of slavery, as well as a turning point in the Civil War itself. By war’s end, some 200,000 black men would serve in the Union Army and Navy, striking a mortal blow against the institution of slavery and paving the way for its eventual abolition by the 13th Amendment.

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Execution of the Lincoln conspirators, 1865

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Lincoln was the third American president to die in office, and the first to be murdered.An unsuccessful attempt had been made on Andrew Jackson 30 years prior, in 1835, and Lincoln had himself been the subject of an earlier assassination attempt by an unknown assailant in August 1864. The assassination of Lincoln was planned and carried out by the well-known stage actor John Wilkes Booth, as part of a larger conspiracy in a bid to revive the Confederate cause.

Booth’s co-conspirators were Lewis Powell and David Herold, who were assigned to kill Secretary of State William H. Seward, and George Atzerodt, who was tasked with killing Vice President Andrew Johnson. By simultaneously eliminating the top three people in the administration, Booth and his co-conspirators hoped to disrupt the United States government.

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In the turmoil that followed the assassination, scores of suspected accomplices were arrested and thrown into prison. Anyone discovered to have had anything to do with the assassination or even the slightest contact with Booth or Herold on their flight were put behind bars. Among the imprisoned were Louis J. Weichmann, a boarder in Mrs. Surratt’s house; Booth’s brother Junius (playing in Cincinnati at the time of the assassination); theater owner John T. Ford, who was incarcerated for 40 days; James Pumphrey, the Washington livery stable owner from whom Booth hired his horse; John M. Lloyd, the innkeeper who rented Mrs. Surratt’s Maryland tavern and gave Booth and Herold carbines, rope, and whiskey the night of April 14; and Samuel Cox and Thomas A. Jones, who helped Booth and Herold escape across the Potomac.

All of those listed above and more were rounded up, imprisoned, and released. Ultimately, the suspects were narrowed down to just eight prisoners (seven men and one woman): Samuel Arnold, George Atzerodt, David Herold, Samuel Mudd, Michael O’Laughlen, Lewis Powell, Edmund Spangler (a Ford’s stagehand who had given Booth’s horse to “Peanuts” Burroughs to hold), and Mary Surratt.

This set of pictures below  from 1865 showing the hanging execution of the four Lincoln conspirators: David Herold, Lewis Powell, George Atzerodt and Mary Surratt. Their deaths were a culmination of sorts of a nation ravaged by war, bitter conflict, and the death of the nation’s commander-in-chief, Abraham Lincoln. Scottish photographer Alexander Gardner captured the macabre scene, including pictures of the condemned seen moments before they walked to the 12-foot gallows, specially constructed for the executions. It was hot that day, reportedly a hundred degrees (38 degree Celsius). Sweat surely dripped down the accused’s faces as they passed by the cheap pine coffins and shallow graves that had been dug for them.

Construction of the gallows for the hanging of the conspirators began immediately on July 5 after the execution order was signed.Execution of the Lincoln conspirators, 1865 2

The death warrant for the four is being read aloud by General John F. Hartranft.Execution of the Lincoln conspirators, 1865 3

On June 29, 1865, the Military Commission met in secret session to begin its review of the evidence in the seven-week long trial. A guilty verdict could come with a majority vote of the nine-member commission; death sentences required the votes of six members. The next day, it reached its verdicts. The Commission found seven of the prisoners guilty of at least one of the conspiracy charges. Four of the prisoners: Mary Surratt, Lewis Powell, George Atzerodt, and David Herold were sentenced “to be hanged by the neck until he [or she] be dead”. Samuel Arnold, Dr. Samuel Mudd and Michael O’Laughlen were sentenced to “hard labor for life, at such place at the President shall direct”, Edman Spangler received a six-year sentence. The next day General Hartrandft informed the prisoners of their sentences. He told the four condemned prisoners that they would hang the next day.

The four condemned conspirators: David Herold, Lewis Powell, Mary Surratt and George Atzerodt (from left to right).

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David Herold — An impressionable and dull-witted pharmacy clerk, Herold accompanied Booth to the home of Dr. Samuel Mudd, who set Booth’s injured leg. The two men then continued their escape through Maryland and into Virginia, and Herold remained with Booth until the authorities cornered them in a barn. Herold surrendered but Booth was shot and died a few hours later.

Lewis Powell — Powell was a former Confederate prisoner of war. Tall and strong, he was recruited to provide the muscle for the kidnapping plot. When that plan failed, Booth assigned Powell to kill Secretary of State William Seward. He entered the Seward home and severely injured Seward, Seward’s son, and a bodyguard.

Mary Surratt — Surratt owned a boarding house in Washington where the conspirators met. Sentenced to death, she was hanged, becoming the first woman executed by the United States federal government.

George Azterodt — German-born Azterodt was a carriage painter and boatman who had secretly ferried Confederate spies across Southern Maryland waterways during the war. Recruited by Booth into the conspiracy, he was assigned to kill Vice President Andrew Johnson, but lost his nerve and stayed in a hotel bar, drinking, instead.

Adjusting the ropes for hanging the conspirators. White cloth was used to bind their arms to their sides, and their ankles and thighs together.Execution of the Lincoln conspirators, 1865 4

A white bag was placed over the head of each prisoner after the noose was put in place.Execution of the Lincoln conspirators, 1865 5

Shortly after the afternoon of July 7, 1865, the four condemned conspirators were forced to climb the hastily built gallows that they had heard being tested the night before from their prison cells. More than 1,000 people—including government officials, members of the U.S. armed forces, friends and family of the accused, official witnesses, and reporters—had come with their exclusive tickets to see this execution. Nooses were placed around the accused’s necks and hoods placed over their heads. Ever since the sentences had been handed down a week ago, Surratt’s lawyers and her daughter Anna had been fighting and pleading for her death sentence to be changed. In fact, many in attendance thought that Surratt would be saved from the gallows at the last-minute. It was not to be.

The conspirators stood on the drop for about 10 seconds, and then Captain Rath clapped his hands. Four soldiers knocked out the supports holding the drops in place, and the condemned fell.Execution of the Lincoln conspirators, 1865 6

The bodies continued to hang and swing for another 25 minutes before they were cut down.Execution of the Lincoln conspirators, 1865 7

After last rites and shortly after 1:30 PM, the trap door was opened and all four fell. It was reported that Atzerodt yelled at this very last moment: “May we meet in another world”. Within minutes, they were all dead. The bodies continued to hang and swing for another 25 minutes before they were cut down.

The scaffold in use and the crowd in the yard seen from the roof of the Washington Arsenal.Execution of the Lincoln conspirators, 1865 8

Over the years, critics have attacked the verdicts, sentences, and procedures of the 1865 Military Commission. These critics have called the sentences unduly harsh, and criticized the rule allowing the death penalty to be imposed with a two-thirds vote of Commission members. The hanging of Mary Surratt, the first woman ever executed by the United States, has been a particular focus of criticism. Critics also have complained about the standard of proof, the lack of opportunity for defense counsel to adequately prepare for the trial, the withholding of potentially exculpatory evidence, and the Commission’s rule forbidding the prisoners from testifying on their own behalf.

(courtesy Library of Congress)

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