Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Dr. Boyers Diary, 1865

President Lincoln's Funeral Procession

Although it is not a military item I found this diary to be quite interesting.
You never know what you can find in the archives of the Schuylkill County Historical Society. Awhile back I found this diary by Dr. William E. Boyer about the assaination of President Lincoln.

Excerpts From Diary
Dr. William Edward Boyer
Born Orwigsburg, Oct. 29, 1828
Died Pottsville, July 29, 1898

April 14, 1865
A very pleasant day today Aunt Lucy and Uncle Thomas Clouse came up to visit us, aunt brought 2 plum trees for us. Our president Abraham Lincoln was shot in the brain this evening at Fords Theatre at Washington D.C. by an actor J. Wilkes Booth of Baltimore.
The secretary of State W. Sewards life was also attempted, also his son Fredrick Seward

April 15, 1865
Abraham Lincoln died this morning, 22 minutes past seven o’clock, Andrew Johnson was sworn as president soon after the death of Abraham Lincoln. Scouts are scouring the country all around Washington but as yet no trace of the murders has been discovered all places of business have been closed, the flags are at half mast and the houses are draped in mourning.

April 16, 1865
Secretary Seward is improving his son Fredrick was successfully??? Abraham Lincoln was at the time of his death 56 yrs 2 months and two days.

April 17, 1865
Secretary Seward was up a while yesterday, Fredrick has regained consciousness.

April 19, 1865
Andrew Lewln was down from Mahanoy City we had a mock funeral a great many people were in the procession in the evening, we were down at Uncle Haesler we had a good time of it nearly all the churches had a service as the procession moved along, nearly all the bells tolled, it was a grand and solemn occasion. Abraham Lincoln’s corpse is to be taken on to Springfield today.

April 20, 1865
There is great excitement in town today on account of a man arrested answering to the description given of Booth, there is ground for suspicion that he is in some way connected with the horrible crime, two other men came along with him but were not yet arrested, he gives his name as Booth Cook, there is a rumor that Booth is arrested at Tamaqua.

April 21, 1865
President Lincolns remains will leave Washington this morning at 8 A.M. arrive at Baltimore at 10 A.M. leave Baltimore 3 P.M. arrive at Harrisburg at 8:20 P.M. at each place his remains will be laid out in state at Harrisburg he will be laid out in the state house.

April 22, 1865
This morning I was up in the stable tending to Kate when my mother came up and asked me if I would not like to go to Philadelphia to see our murdered President. I hurried and got Kate fixed for the day and then got ready to go. I had J. Franklin Harris for a companion all the way down to the city. I lost him I stopped at the American Hotel Uncle William Zerby had a room together we took dinner and then went to 635 Arch street and got some Pill boxes for Dr, Haesler, We then went up to 15th and Walnut where we saw the Procession on the hearse. The hearse is magnificent the procession made the grandest spectacle I ever saw after it had passed us we went down to 3rd and Chest-nut where it passed us again, he was then laid out in state in independence Hall, which was beautifully adorned with flowers and draped in mourning, the Union League and those provided with passes saw it during the night about 5,000 persons saw it during the evening, the evening the funeral train started from Harrisburg at 12 m and arrived at Philadelphia at 4:30. Some times it drizzled a little but did no damage on the whole it was a nice day for the procession.

April 23,1865
This morning we got of bed at half past 4 AM and at 5 we took our positions in line
Opposite the Receiver of Taxes Office, we (Uncle Lerbey) and I. At 6 o’clock AM the
Opened the windows and the people coming led to pass in at ten minutes past seven
The line broke and every thing was confusion the ladies screamed and some fainted,
Little children were almost crushed in the crowd after being almost obliterated we succeeded
At 25 minutes past 7 to see the president, we then went to the hotel and got our breakfast.
After breakfast we rigged ourselves up and went outside to see the crowd, no order was observed and the people crowded so tight together, thou the middle ones could not move their arms, we then went up on the porch where we stayed awhile. They carried a dozen ladies into the American who had fainted. The police now extended a line across at 6th and on 5th St.and would let no one in except the regular line, the crowd now became to strong for the police and they sent for the military who formed the people into a regular line, they now Passed.

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