Ford's New Theatre - Washington, D.C. - 1865
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Marine Biologist
N 38° 53.792 W 077° 01.567
18S E 324291 N 4307246
Quick Description: Ford's Theatre, located in Washington, D.C., is the site of a vintage ad for a comedy titled The American Cousin. The ad was for the night of April 14, 1865, the night President Lincoln attended and was assassinated.
Location: District of Columbia, United States
Date Posted: 11/30/2008 4:08:47 PM
Waymark Code: WM595H
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member TheBeanTeam
Views: 64

Long Description:
From the National Park Service's Ford's Theatre website:

Confederate General Robert E. Lee surrendered to General Grant at Appomattox Courthouse on April 9, 1865, effectively ending four years of devastating warfare. President Lincoln proclaimed April 14 as a day of thanksgiving. To celebrate, he decided to attend a performance of a lighthearted comedy, Our American Cousin, at Ford’s Theatre.

In 1865, Ford's Theatre, an imposing brick building three stories high with five arched doorways at street level, was one of the finest and most modern in the nation. The management made elaborate preparations for the presidential visit. Stagehands created a large new box at the south side of the stage, decorated it with American flags, and furnished it with comfortable chairs. About 8:30pm, the presidential party arrived at the theatre. A full house greeted Lincoln with a standing ovation.

At approximately 10:15pm, John Wilkes Booth slipped silently through the unguarded door at the rear of the box and fired a derringer into the back of Lincoln's head at close range. One of Lincoln’s companions, Major Rathbone, grappled with the assassin, but Booth managed to break free. Booth vaulted over the box balustrade and managed to escape through the back entrance of the theatre. Stunned, the audience reacted slowly, but pandemonium followed with the dawning realization of what had happened. Doctors who had rushed to the presidential box ordered that Lincoln be carried to the nearest bed, which turned out to be in the back parlor of William Petersen’s boarding house, across the street.

The theatre and the boarding house where Lincoln died are preserved together as Ford's Theatre National Historic Site.

The vintage ad about the play The American Cousin showing at Ford's Theatre is available on the internet (visit link). The ad identifies the location of Ford's Theatre as Tenth Street, Above Penna. [Pennsylvania] Avenue. The actual address for the theatre is 511 10th Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20004.

Name of publication (required):
Evening Star

Date of Publication (required):
April 14, 1865

Web URL to additional proof of location or additional information.: [Web Link]

Does the ad identify the location of the company?: Not Listed

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