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Senator Sumner of Massachusetts, General Halleck, General Augur, General Meigs, General J. F. Farnsworth of Illinois, General Todd of Dacotah, the President's Assistant Private Secretary, Major Hay, the medical gentlemen, and perhaps two or three others. Dr. Stone was sitting on the foot of the bed. An army surgeon was sitting opposite the President's head, occasionally feeling his pulse, and applying his fingers to the arteries of the neck and the heart.
“Mr. Lincoln seemed to be divested of all clothing except the bed coverings. His eyes were closed, and the lids and surrounding parts so injected with blood as to present the appearance of having been bruised. He was evidently totally unconscious, and was breathing regularly but heavily, and with an occasional sigh escaping with the breath.
There was scarcely a dry eye in the room, and the scene was the most solemn and impressive one I ever witnessed. After a while, Captain Robert Lincoln, of General Grants staff, and eldest son of the President, entered the chamber, and stood at the headboard, leaning over his father.
“For a time his grief completely overpowered him, but he soon recovered himself and behaved in the most manly manner until the closing of the scene. As the morning wore on, the condition of the President remained unchanged until about seven o'clock. In the meantime, it came on to rain heavily, and the scene from the windows was in dreary sympathy with that which was going on within. Just before this, Mrs. Lincoln had been supported into the chamber, and had thrown herself moaning upon her husband's body. She was permitted to remain but a few minutes, when she was carried out in an almost insepsible condition.
“At about seven o'clock, the President's breathing changed in a manner to indicate that death was rapidly approaching. It became low and fitful, with frequent interruptions. Several times I thought that all was over, until the feeble respiration was resumed. At last, at just twenty-two minutes past seven o'clock, without a struggle, without a convulsive movement, without a tremor, he ceased breathing—and was no more.
Thus died this great, pure, kind-hearted man, who never willingly injured a human being—the greatest martyr to liberty the world has ever seen.
“Shortly after his death, finding that his eyes were not entirely closed, I placed my hands upon them. One of the attendant surgeons first put nickel cents upon them, and then substituted silver half dollars. It was twenty minutes or half an hour before the body commenced to grow cold. The lower jaw began to fall slightly, and the lower teeth were exposed. One of the medical gentlemen bound up the jaw with a pocket handkerchief. Mr. Stanton threw down the window-shades, and I left the Chamber of Death. Immediately after the
decease, the Rev. Dr. Gurley had offered up a fervent and affecting prayer in the room, interrupted only by the sobs of those present.
“ When I left the room he was again praying in the front parlor. Poor Mrs. Lincoln's moans were distressing to listen
After the prayer was over I entered the parlor, and found Mrs. Lincoln supported in the arms of her son Robert. She was soon taken to her carriage. As she reached the front door she glanced at the theatre opposite, and exclaimed several times,
Oh, that dreadful house!' That dreadful house!' Immediately thereafter guards were stationed at the door of the room in which the President's body lay. In a few minutes I left myself. It is hoped that some historical painter will be found capable of portraying that momentous death-scene.”
MAJOR RATHBONE'S STATEMENT.
In connection with the murder of Mr. Lincoln, we give the statements of Major RATHBONE and Miss HARRIS, who were in the President's box at the time. Being the only persons, except Mrs. LINCOLN, who were present when Booth executed his foul purpose, their statements are of great interest, delineating as they do the scenes which immediately transpired. Major RATHBONE appeared before the investigating Magistrate, and testified as follows:
"That on the 14th April, 1865, at about twenty minutes past eight o'clock in the evening, he, with Miss Clara H. Harris, left his residence, at the corner of Fifteenth and H streets, and joined the President and Mrs. Lincoln, and went with them in their carriage to Ford's Theatre, in Tenth street. The box assigned to the President is in the second tier, on the righthand side of the audience, and was occupied by the President and Mrs. Lincoln, Miss Harris, and the deponent-and by no other person. The box is entered by passing from the front of the building, in the rear of the dress-circle, to a small entry or passage-way about eight feet in length and four feet in width.
“ This passage-way is entered by a door which opens on the inner side. The docr is so placed as to make an acute angle between it and the wall behind it on the inner side. At the inner end of this passage-way is another door standing squarely across, and opening into the box. On the left-hand side of the passage-way, and very near the inner end, is a third door, which also opens into the box. This latter door was closed. The party entered the box through the door at the end of the passage-way. The box is so constructed that it may be divided into two by a movable partition, one of the doors described opening into each. The front of the box is about ten or twelve feet in length, and in the centre of the railing is a small pillar overhung with a curtain. The depth of the box from front to rear is about nine feet. The elevation of the box above the stage, including the railing, is about ten or twelve feet.
"When the party entered the box, a cushioned arm-chair was standing at the end of the box furthest from the stage and nearest the audience. This was also the nearest point to the door by which the box is entered. The President seated himself in this chair-and except that he once left the chair for the purpose of putting on his overcoat, remained so seated until he was shot. Mrs. Lincoln was seated in a chair between the President and the pillar in the centre above described. At the opposite end of the box—that nearest the end of the stagewere two chairs. In one of these, standing in the corner, Miss Harris was seated. At her left hand, and along the wall running from that end of the box to the rear, stood a small sofa. At the end of this sofa, next to Miss Harris, this deponent was seated. The distance between this deponent and the President, as they were sitting, was about seven or eight feet; and the distance between this deponent and the door was about the same.
“ The distance between the President, as he sat, and the door, was about four or five feet. The door, according to the recollection of this deponent, was not closed during the evening. When the second scene of the third act was being performed, and while this deponent was intently observing the proceedings upon the stage, with his back towards the door, he heard the discharge of a pistol behind him, and looking around, saw, through the smoke, a man between the door and the President. At the same time deponent heard him shout some word, which deponent thinks was · Freedom ! This deponent instantly sprang towards him and seized him; he wrested himself from the grasp and made a violent thrust at the breast of deponent with a large knife. Deponent parried the blow by striking it up, and received a wound several inches deep in his left arm, between the elbow and the shoulder. The orifice of the wound is about an inch and a half in length, and extends upwards towards the shoulder several inches. The man rushed to the front of the box, and deponent endeavored to seize him again, but only caught his clothes as he was leaping over the railing of the box. The clothes, as deponent believes, were torn in this attempt to seize him.
“As he went over upon the stage, deponent cried out with a loud voice :—'Stop that man!' Deponent then turned to the President; his position was not changed ; his head was slightly bent forward, and his eyes were closed. Deponent saw that he was unconscious, and supposing him mortally wounded, rushed to the door for the purpose of calling medical aid. On reaching the outer door of the passage-way as above described, deponent found it barred by a heavy piece of plank, one end of which was secured in the wall, and the other resting against the door. It had been so securely fastened that it required considerable force to remove it. This wedge or bar was about four feet from the floor. Persons upon the outside were beating against the door for the purpose of entering. Deponent removed the bar, and the door was opened.
"Several persons who represented themselves to be surgeons were allowed to enter. Deponent saw there Colonel Crawford, and requested him to prevent other persons from entering the box. Deponent then returned to the box, and found the surgeons examining the President's person. They had not yet discovered the wound. As soon as it was discovered it was determined to remove him from the theatre. He was carried out, and this deponent then proceeded to assist Mrs. Lincoln, who was intensely excited, to leave the theatre. On reaching the head of the stairs, deponent requested Major Potter to aid him in assisting Mrs. Lincoln across the street to the house to which the President was being conveyed. The wound which deponent had received had been bleeding very profusely, and on reaching the house, feeling very faint from the loss of blood, he seated himself in the hall, and soon after fainted away, and was laid upon the floor. Upon the return of consciousness, deponent was taken in a carriage to his residence.
“In the review of the transaction, it is the confident belief of this deponent that the time which elapsed between the discharge of the pistol and the time when the assassin leaped from the box, did not exceed thirty seconds. Neither Mrs. Lincoln nor Miss Harris had left their seats.
· H. R. RATHBONE. “Subscribed and sworn before me this 17th day of April, 1865.
“A. B. OLIN, Justice Supreme Court, D. C.”
AFFIDAVIT OF MISS HARRIS.
District of Columbia, City of Washington, ss. :--CLARA H. HARRIS, being duly sworn, says that she has read the foregoing affidavit of Major Rathbone, and knows the contents thereof; that she was present at Ford's Theatre with the President, and Mrs. Lincoln, and Major Rathbone on the evening of the 14th of April instant; that at the time she heard the discharge of the pistol she was attentively engaged in observing what was transpiring upon the stage, and looking round she saw Major Rathbone spring from his seat and advance to the opposite side of the bux; that she saw him engaged as if in a struggle with another man, but the smoke with which he was en veloped prevented this deponent from seeing distinctly the other man; that the first time she saw him distinctly was when he leaped from the box upon the stage; that she then heard Major Rathbone cry out, 'Stop that man!' and this deponent then immediately repeated the cry, “Stop that inan! Won't somebody stop that man ?' A moment after some one from the stage asked, "What is it?' or "What is the matter?' and deponent replied, “The President is shot.' Very soon after, two persons, one wearing the uniform of a naval surgeon and the other that of a soldier of the Veteran Reserve Corps, came upon the stage, and the deponent assisted them in climbing up to the box.
“And this deponent further says that the facts stated in the foregoing affidavit, so far as the same came to the knowledge or notice of this deponent, are accurately stated therein.
66 CLARA H. HARRIS. "Subscribed and sworn before me this 17th day of April, 1865.
A. B. Olin, Justice of Supreme Court, D. C:”
SURGEON GENERAL BARNES' STATEMENT.
On the night of the assassination, Surgeon General Barnes was met in front of Willard's Hotel by an officer pale and breathless, who informed him that the President had been shot. Supposing that the deed was done at the White House, General Barnes hurried thitherward. Stopping at the Surgeon General's office to give orders for assistance, he found a summons to the bedside of Secretary Seward, who had been attacked by an assassin. Believing that the two stories were from this, Barnes hurried to the chamber of Mr. Seward. He found him lying upon the bed with one cheek cut open and part of the flesh lying upon the pillow. The room presented a horrible scene. Blood was everywhere. The attendants were helpless. A deed of horror had been enacted; but there was no one to explain its details. Dr. Barnes immediately gave his attention to Mr. Seward; but soon afterward Dr. Norris arrived, and, turning over the Secretary to his care, the Surgeon General proceeded to look after the Assistant Secretary, Frederick Seward, who was lying insensible upon a sofa in the adjoining
In the meantime other surgical attendants had come, among whom was Dr. Notson, and while ministering to the wounded at Secretary Seward's, the Surgeon-General was summoned to the dying murdered President.