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"Yeah. On December second eighteen fifty nine a group of soldiers erected gallows outside the town of Charlestown, West Virginia, the Virginia militia plan to execute a man named John Brown for leading an armed slave rebellion in harpers ferry West Virginia his crime threatened the southern way of life, especially at a time when the tensions over slavery were on the razor's edge of toppling into civil war at eleven o'clock in the morning soldiers led Brown out of his jail cell as Brown mounted the scaffold and slipped. His head into the news one soldier near the front of the crowd felt a Pang of sympathy. For the condemned man, he grew pale as he watched Brown's body gross still another militiaman asked the sympathetic soldier if he was okay, he replied, I feel very faint. Then a little embarrassed he straightened up and added. I would like a good stiff drink of. Whiskey? The soldiers fellows were sympathetic to his reaction. He was a new recruit on us to the side of death. They trusted he would toughen up soon enough. They were correct that soldiers name was John Wilkes booth and in around five and a half years. He would become one of history's most notorious, assassins. One death can change the world. At least that's what assassins believe welcome to assassinations on the par cast network every Monday, we examined the famous assassins of history, and the men and women who were assassinated. I'm your host Bill Thomas, and I'm your host, Kate Leonard. This is our first of three episodes on president ABRAHAM LINCOLN who led the country through the civil war and ended the practice of legal slavery in the United States as the war was winding to a close in eighteen sixty five he was assassinated by John Wilkes booth park cast. We're grateful for you our listeners you allow us to do what we love let us know how we're doing reach out on Facebook and Instagram at par cast and Twitter at par cast network. And if you enjoy today's episode the best way to help us is to leave a five star review wherever you're listening. Ng? It really does help. We also now have merchandise head to par cast dot com slash merch. For more information. Today Lincoln is regarded by historians and political scientists has one of the greatest presidents in United States history. But this wasn't always the case during his presidency. He was incredibly unpopular in eighteen sixty one when seven states seceded from the United States month before his inauguration. Lincoln took the blame one of his harshest critics was John Wilkes booth even before ABRAHAM LINCOLN was elected, president nationally renowned actor John Wilkes booth. Despised him Lincoln stood for everything booth. Hated Lincoln was a northerner. He wanted to stop the spread of slavery. And he advocated for the rights of black people more than booth despise Lincoln, though, he feared him as the civil war progressed. Lincoln invoked wartime powers and broke many norms of presidential behavior. This only fed booths belief that. Lincoln was a tyrant who would topple America's democracy in pursuit of his own power. John Wilkes booth political beliefs were shaped by the nation. He grew up in booth was born on may tenth eighteen thirty eight on a farm in Bel Air, Maryland, like many farming families at the time the booths owned numerous slaves. Slavery felt natural to John and he never questioned the institution as a child booth love to be the center of attention. His father Junius was a famous actor and respected worldwide boots older brother, Edwin became an actor too. It was no surprise when John followed in his family's footsteps and pursued a career in acting just after he turned seventeen in August eighteen fifty five booth began his professional acting career as a walking gentleman, meaning he played small roles in numerous shows performed by the same company his. I performance was in Shakespeare's Richard the third he was anything, but an instant success less than a week into professional acting career booth flubbed align during a performance of the bell stratagem and was met with boos and hisses. His later performances were similarly disastrous even though he was charismatic offstage booth struggled with severe stage fright, which led him to forget or miss speak his lines. He did so poorly as an actor that he briefly performed under the name, John Wilkes. So that his failures wouldn't negatively reflect on his brother and father, however, driven by an obsessive desire for fame booth pushed himself to overcome his nerves. It took him years of practice and failed performances, but eventually he was able to perform without forgetting his lines or making any obvious mistakes underneath his stage fright booth was actually a talented actor and by the tail end. End of the eighteen fifties. When he was in his early twenties. He was just as famous as his father and brother soon, he wants more used his full name performing as John Wilkes booth whose Embiid were aided by his natural charisma and his ability to charm, powerful and connected. People off the stage booth became a popular figure in the city of Richmond Virginia, which would later become the capital of the confederacy his place in the Virginia community cemented his identification with the southern cause as the divisions between the north and south grew deeper abolitionists had been clashing with supporters of slavery. Since before. The US constitution was even ratified over the decades numerous laws were made and then contested as people on both sides of the issue fought to control the country's destiny by the eighteen fifties. Slavery was the defining point in national politics at some point. It in the late eighteen fifties. When booth was in his late teens or early twenties. He joined the know nothing party political party that was built around opposition to immigrants the party began as a secret society and members were instructed to pretend they knew nothing about the group, which was how they got their name as the party became more mainstream. It pushed a platform to limit immigration and make it more difficult to become a naturalized citizen John Wilkes booth. Father Junius was an immigrant and John had many immigrant friends throughout his life. But he viewed the wealthy upper class immigrants. He knew as inherently different from other immigrants who are often poor or uneducated booth believed in maintaining a natural order in society and opposed any efforts to change his traditional way of life, especially the abolition movement. His fear of abolitionist only grew as the conflict started to turn violent in the late eighteen fifties. In the early morning of October seventeenth eighteen fifty nine an abolitionist named John Brown led a group of twenty two fellow abolitionists to a military arsenal. At harpers ferry Virginia he planned to distribute the weapons throughout southern slave communities. So they could rebel and seize their freedom Brown successfully seized the arsenal and held control for hours until Colonel Robert Lee of the US marines arrived to reclaim the armory on October eighteenth. It took the marines all of three minutes to invade the armory defeat the raiders and arrest. John brown. Brown was captured and arrested still the standoff at harpers ferry proved to be a meaningful symbolic moment for people on both sides of the slavery issue. Clarify the issue in the most dramatic and finally resistible way. Where no matter where you stood you had to stand somewhere after harpers ferry when booth. Heard about the events at harpers ferry. He decided he needed to get involved in the southern 'cause there were rumors that riots had broken out in Charlestown, West Virginia where John Brown was being held and soldiers from other states where needed to step in and quell the violence Luth left town so quickly. He didn't even tell his theater managers. He was quitting. He tried to board the first train headed south that he could find. But the soldiers already on board wouldn't allow him the train was solely for enlisted men and booth wasn't in uniform booth said he was ready to enlist and even offered to buy spare uniform off one of the soldiers, finally two men relented and gave booth pieces of their spare uniforms. He got dressed and climbed aboard the train to Charlestown, a newly minted member of the Virginia militia Charlestown proved to be less exciting than he'd anticipated. There was no rioting or fighting in the streets. Still booth had. A commitment. So he stayed with the militia one of his first duties was standing guard outside the prison where Brown was held. They believed the abolitionists would rally to save Brown from execution and the militia was prepared for a fight. But no supporters ever came booth remarked that Brown's heart must have been broken when he realised he'd been abandoned by his 'cause booth was still standing guard when Brown was marched outside for his execution on December second eighteen fifty nine and the moment stayed with him for the rest of his life later. He often spoken Meiring Lee about Brown. Even though they disagreed on slavery booth respected Brown's willingness to fight and die for his beliefs. Even when no one else would do had far less respect for politicians abolitionist politicians wanted to disrupt the natural order booth believed in and they weren't even willing to fight. For that change face to face. So when a former Illinois, congressman and staunch abolitionist named ABRAHAM LINCOLN ran for the presidency in eighteen sixty booth dismissed him as both a coward and a tyrant in the making booth wasn't alone. Even before election day numerous southern states threatened to succeed if Lincoln won the presidency somewhat ironically, southern slave owners valued their own freedom highly Lincoln's opposition to slavery was seen as a threat to the freedom and independence of the south. When Lincoln won the election southerners like John Wilkes booth decided that the time had come to take dramatic action. If the United States wouldn't recognize their right to continue owning slaves than the southerners would form their own separate country in February eighteen sixty seven of the thirty three states seceded from the union triggering the. Civil war coming up. We'll turn our focus to the man who was blamed for the civil war. Abraham lincoln. If you're looking for a great podcast, listen to between episodes of assassinations. You should check out rusty hinges. Rusty hinges isn't a par cash show. But we think you'll like their in-depth exploration of mysteries hoaxes and natural phenomenon. The house LARs also tells captivating stories about unsolved murders and weird history with just the right amount of sarcasm. I figure assassinations listeners would enjoy the episode titled where is Kennedy's brain the brain could hold the truth about whether the president was shot from the front rather than by Lee Harvey Oswald from the Texas school book depository, but there are other great episodes to like the one on Barbara folate the child prodigy who vanished without a trace and the kidnapping of June row blaze, which grand jury couldn't even decide if it really happened. One of my favorite episodes was on legendary conman count Victor Lustiger who sold. The Eiffel tower. Plus, there's the story about Clarence Roberts who died not once but twice to check out these episodes and more just look for rusty hinges on your favorite podcast app and be sure to