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Where Lincoln Died

Lincoln Memorial/ SeacoastNH.comLINCOLN ASSASSINATION

After assassination JW Booth shot Lincoln, the President was carried across the street to the Peterson House. The next nine hours rank among the saddest in American history. The rooming house is today a national shrine and part two of our walking tour of the place Lincoln died.




BACK TO Ford’s Theatre  
READ: The Day Lincoln Died for Me  

With a bullet longed in his brain from the shot fired by John Wilkes Booth, Lincoln was carried from Ford’s Theatre in Washington, DC to this building across the street. Three rooms in the Peterson House are open to the public. It's a self-guided tour. A girl with a walkie-talkie greeted us and we visited the room where wife Mary Todd Lincoln and others waited during the President's nine-hour deterioration.

Booth reward posterIn "historic" drawings this room has been expanded to include many more death watchers than its small size actually could hold. Still, the striped wallpaper and bureau and bed are recognizable. Here Lincoln was placed diagonally on the bed to accommodate his great height. He never revived.

How could anyone stand at this spot and not feel the heavy sadness of the room? Like the hordes of tourists that filed through, as in the theater across the street, we snapped our obligatory photo and passed along quietly. Visitors exit at the bottom of the building, after passing a reconstructed garden area at the back. It is a quick stop with effective crowd control, unchanged in its presentation for decades.

Suddenly we were back on the street and surrounded by tacky souvenir shops. We grabbed a snack at the Lincoln House and climbed back onto the tour bus. After seeing Abraham Lincoln laid so low, it was good to see him gigantic again. Twelve trolley stops later, right after Arlington Cemetery, we just dropped by the Lincoln Memorial. In the exhibit below the Memorial Honest Abe still looms large. – JDR

Photos by J. Dennis Robinson © All rights reserved.

The House Where Lincoln Died /

Peterson House Parlor, Washington, DC/

Room where Lincoln died / (c)

Currier * Ives version of Lincoln's deathbed/

Bed in Peterson House where Lincoln died/

Ford's Theatre across the street from the Peterson House draped out in mourning / Library of Congress


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