On April 15, 1865 President Abraham Lincoln succumbed to a gunshot wound from the evening before. The Assassination of President Lincoln and The Trial of The Conspirators is a detailed description compiled by Benn Pitman, the official reporter to the tribunal conducting the trial, of the events leading up to Abraham Lincoln’s murder and the trial of those who plotted it.
This edition is the first ever facsimile done of the Pitman transcript, which was published in 1865, the same year as the conclusion of the trial before a special military commission convened in Washington by order of President Johnson. The book includes an edited transcript of the trial of the eight conspirators, the verdict of the commission, and an account of the 7 July 1865 executions. Our edition also contains an appendix with Surratt’s application for habeas corpus and newspaper reports of the last hours and execution of the condemned. Considering the enormity of the crime and the controversy surrounding the formation of the military commission and the trial, this edition is a noteworthy American legal document and a dramatic story in its own right. This remarkable compilation of documents offers a view of nineteenth-century forensics and tribunals.