Sep 24

Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide Michael Kanazawich is the author of the book Remarkable Stories of the Lincoln Assassination. He is standing in Baptist Alley behind Ford’s Theater by the stage door which John Wilkes used to enter and exit the theater on the evening of April 14, 1865. This view was taken facing west at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide Michael Kanazawich continues his series on John Wilkes Booth’s Last Day in Washington, D.C. Mike was born and raised in Oneonta, New York. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Geology from Oneonta State University. He received his Master of Science degree in Environmental Geology from the University of Connecticut. Mike worked as a Geologist for eleven years before becoming a Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide in 1995. Michael Kanazawich is the author of the book Remarkable Stories of the Lincoln Assassination.

To contact Mike Kanazawich, click here to reveal his email address.

In our first post, Michael Kanazawich introduced the series of John Wilkes Booth’s Last Day in Washington, D.C., and showed us the site of the National Hotel where John Wilkes Booth stayed while in Washington.

In our second post, Mike Kanazawich told how John Wilkes Booth found out that President Lincoln was attending Ford’s Theatre that evening, his desire to rent a fast horse, and a possible sighting of Booth at The Willard Hotel.

In our third post, Gettysburg LBG Mike Kanazawich described John Wilkes Booth’s visit to Mary Surratt’s Boarding House, and Booth’s visit to Grover’s National Theatre.

In our fourth post, Mike Kanazawich described John Wilkes Booth’s visit to the Kirkwood House, and Booth’s appearance later that afternoon at his residence at the National Hotel.

In our fifth post, Booth visited the Presidential Box in Ford’s Theater to prepare an obstruction for the assasination attempt that evening. Mike Kanazawich also showed us the Herndon House where Booth and his fellow conspirators met to make final preparations for the assassination.

In today’s post, John Wilkes Booth assassinates President Abraham Lincoln and escapes the theater using Baptist Alley.

This map shows us the locations taken of videos for the John Wilkes Booth’s Last Day in Washington series. Videos #1, #5, #15-#16, and #18-#22 were taken at the site of Ford’s Theater. Videos #2 and #4 were taken on Pennsylvania Avenue on the south side of the site of the National Hotel (now the Newseum). Videos #3 and #6 were taken on the north side of the site of the National Hotel. Video #7 was taken in the vicinity of the Willard Hotel. Videos #8 and #9 were taken at Mary Surratt’s Boarding House. Videos #10 and #11 were taken at the site of Grover’s National Theatre. Videos #12 and #13 were taken at the site of the Kirkwood House. Video #14 was taken at the site of the National Hotel (now the Newseum). This map was created facing north at approximately 10:30 AM on Friday, July 24, 2009.

Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide Mike Kanazawich is standing in Baptist Alley. After his meeting in the Herndon House with his co-conspirators, John Wilkes Booth arrived back at Ford’s Theater around 9:00 PM. This view was taken facing east at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

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In Video #18 (Videos #1- #17 were shown in our previous Booth posts) Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide Michael Kanazawich explains how Booth arrives at the rear of Ford’s Theater and explains how Baptist Alley would have looked. He then describes how he requests his friend Edmund Spangler to hold his horse for him, but he was working that night at the play. Spangler talks Joseph “Peanut” Burroughs into holding Booth’s Horse. This view was taken facing east to west at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

After Booth entered the Theater, he went underneath the stage from right to left or north to south while the play, “Our American Cousin” was being performed. This view was taken facing southwest at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

Licensed Battlefield Guide Michael Kanazawich is now standing in front of (west of) Ford’s Theater. Ford’s Theater is the gray brick and red brick structure in the background. This view was taken facing northeast at approximately 11:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

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In Video #19 Licensed Battlefield Guide Michael Kanazawich is now in front of Ford’s Theater. He explains how Booth arrived at the rear of the Theater at Baptist Alley around 9:00 PM. Booth went underneath the stage, entered an alleyway, and then went into the Star Saloon and ordered a whiskey and a water. Booth came out of the Saloon and around 10:10 PM asked John Buckingham what time it was. He comes out of the theater one last time and then goes in to murder Abraham Lincoln. This view was taken facing northeast to east to southeast to northeast at approximately 11:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

After Booth went underneath the stage, he exited Ford’s Theater is a small alley which is now the door behind Mike. This view was taken facing east at approximately 11:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

Booth then entered Taltavul’s Star Saloon to have his whiskey and water. This view was taken facing northeast at approximately 11:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

Booth then entered the lobby of Ford’s Theater where the Lincoln penny press machines are now located… This view was taken facing southwest at approximately 4:00 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

…and moved upstairs to the dress circle. This view was taken facing west at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

The play, “Our American Cousin,” began around 8:30 PM. President and Mrs. Lincoln, and their guests, Major Henry Rathbone and Clara Harris arrived during the first act. The Lincoln’s sat on the right of the box. This view was taken facing south at approximately 4:45 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

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In Video #20 Mike Kanazawich is inside Ford’s Theater. Mike describes Booth entering the door to the Presidential Box, barring the door, assassinating the President, jumping to the stage, and running out the back of the Theater. This view was taken facing south at approximately 4:45 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

Booth walked behind the audience in the dress circle… This view was taken facing west at approximately 4:45 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

He then presented his card to Lincoln aide Charles Forbes at the yellow door outside the Presidential Box. This view was taken facing southwest at approximately 4:45 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

Booth then barred the door to the box to keep others from entering, and shot President Lincoln in the back of his head. This view was taken facing south at approximately 4:45 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

The Deringer that John Wilkes Booth used to shoot Abraham Lincoln is on display in the museum in the basement of Ford’s Theater. This view was taken facing north at approximately 4:30 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

The Deringer was made by the gunsmith Henry Deringer of Philadelphia. This view was taken facing northeast at approximately 4:30 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

The Deringer was favored by some because of its small size. It could easily be concealed within someone’s pocket. This view was taken facing northeast at approximately 4:30 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

The Deringer fired a single, round ball, which weighed approximately one ounce. This view was taken facing northwest at approximately 4:30 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

It was .44 caliber, and of course was very accurate at close range. This view was taken facing west at approximately 4:30 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

After shooting Lincoln, Booth struggled with Major Rathbone, and may have caught his spur on the dark blue U.S. Treasury Flag in the middle of the outside of the box. This view was taken facing west at approximately 4:45 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

Booth then jumped to the stage and may have fractured his leg. At least one historian believes that Booth fractured his leg later that night when his horse fell. Booth raised a knife he was carrying (and which he stabbed Major Rathbone) over his head and yelled, “sic semper tyrannis! (thus always to tyrants).” This view was taken facing east at approximately 4:45 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

Booth then limped (or ran) to across the stage to the rear door of Ford’s Theater where the red exit light is barely visible. This view was taken facing northeast at approximately 4:45 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

John Wilkes Booth then ran out the stage door where “Peanut” Burroughs was holding Booth’s horse. This view was taken facing west at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

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In Video #21 Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide Mike Kanazawich describes Booth running backstage and slashing his knife at those around him, and hitting “Peanut” Burroughs, who was holding his horse, on the head with the butt end of his knife. This view was taken facing west to east at approximately 4:45 PM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

After mounting his horse, Booth began riding down Baptist Alley, away from the camera. This view was taken facing east at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

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In Video #22 Licensed Battlefield Guide Mike Kanazawich shows how Booth rode down the alley towards the camera, then turned north in the alley towards F Street to make his escape. This view was taken facing west to north at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

Booth rode down Baptist Alley, towards the camera. This view was taken facing west at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

After riding down the alley, past where the car is located, he began to turn… This view was taken facing northwest at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

…and ride down this alley towards F Street. This view was taken facing north at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

At F Street it is believed that he took a right, and headed towards the area of the United States Capitol and then to the Navy Yard Bridge. This view was taken facing north at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, July 18, 2009.

Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide Mike Kanazawich is the author of the book Remarkable Stories of the Lincoln Assassination. It is available from Colecraft Industries. This image was scanned facing south at approximately 5:15 PM on Tuesday, July 21, 2009.

To see other posts by Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guides, click here.


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