The conspirators thought that the murder of the President would dismantle the American Government, but this wasn’t the case. Lincoln was killed, but The Union General didn’t attend the show at Ford’s Theater. Even the Secretary survived the stabs and Seward failed to murder him. Johnson was not at all assassinated, meaning his entire cabinet remained the same. All the conspirators were sentenced and executed.
John Wilkes Booth was an established performer and joined forces with the Southern colonies. Booth was followed by the guards and was eventually killed in the farm of Richard Garrett in Virginia on April 26, 1865. The government trialed the other conspirators caught and later executed them on the grounds of treason and off course murder. One conspiracy theory was laid out that the Southern colonies led by J.W. Boyd were always against the Union formed by Lincoln and the business people and Republicans always wanted him dead.
Boyd was eventually killed by the army and Boothe in the barn. But the locals had a story of their own which caught national attention. They believed that Booth planned a hoax and it was a double who was actually killed by the army and not him. People started waging money to prove these rumors correct. Lawyer Bates write “The Escape and Suicide of John Wilkes Booth” wherein he tried to debunk this myth. “This One Mad Act” by Izola Forrester mentioned this theory in her book. She tried to prove the relation between her Uncle Stevenson to Booth and learnt the reality that her Uncle’s father was Booth’s son. He was adopted by Booth’s family. A new masterpiece called “The Lincoln Conspiracy” focused on the missing papers from Booth’s diary and his possible escape from the farm. The troops killed Boyd, who was of great resemblance to Booth and it became unclear whether they killed Boyd or Booth and hence, tried to mask it to settle the tension in the country.
Just after the assassination, newspapers all around America headlined the story “Assassination with the Rebel Fiends at Work,” considering that the group of conspirators were not limited to that of Booth only. Demopolis in Alabama stated the false news of the death of Seward and glorified the death of Lincoln. After the Confederates periled, fingers were put out Confederate President J. Davis and Secretary J.P. Benjamin, who was a famous protestant and “Jew.” He had connections with European financial authorities like “Rothschild’ banking empire,” who didn’t agree with Lincoln’s import-export laws and were running in losses. Many scrutinized Mary Surratt, who identified with the Republicans, who were famous for having “Anti-Semitic and Anti-Catholic views.” This directed the charges to Pope and Roman Nobility involved in the murder of Lincoln. Irish identified with the Democrats and due to a violent outburst against their colony in New York city were left to die. This attack was led by Republicans and tension became high in Lincoln’s regime.
Theories became more validated when John Surratt, son of Mary Surratt was seen at Vatican. The most intriguing theory was the “Eisenschiml thesis.” Eisenschiml was an Austrian scientist who came to U.S in 1901. His book, “Why was Lincoln Murdered” in 1937 pointed fingers on the Secretary of War, Sir Edwin Stanton. Stanton had a direct purpose. He was not content with the meager offers made by Lincoln to the Southern colonies, which led to the distrust in the former Confederate states from the party. Stanton was included to join Lincoln at the theater on April 14, but he shifted to Washington the night before. Also, he denied Lincoln’s offer of Major Eckert as his bodyguard for that night. He wanted the Union troops to kill Booth to allegedly save himself from trial and also removed fifteen pages from Booth’s diary, which might have had secrets about the conspiracy framed.
It was pretty obvious that blame was raised upon the Vice President, who got Lincoln killed to gain more power. Andrew Johnson became the pivotal point of the story here. It was noticed that Booth met Andrew Johnson on the day Lincoln was murdered and left a card stating, “Don’t wish to disturb you; are you at home?” Even the members of the committee started developing this notion against Johnson and formed another committee in 1867 to investigate his role in that scenario, but no concrete evidence was found. George Atzerodt was given the task to kill the Vice President but lost his nerve. Scholars believe this situation as a step taken by Johnson to get away from the scrutiny.
Another theory suggests that in the ongoing Civil War, Lincoln dishonored the authorized “Union Trade” by giving permission to certain North Colonies to cut deals in the Southern part of the country. Lincoln thought of this as a method to help the nation survive bankruptcy, but multiple investors lost all their money and Lincoln couldn’t do much about it. This made the Confederates to be in a really unstable position. Just before his assassination, Lincoln was condemned by raging Northern Politicians with a “Reconstructed Policy” which was really ineffective and unreliable for them. This made the leaders dissolve most of their power, which was taken really bitterly. Senators in states like Ohio stated, “By God, the sooner he is assassinated the better.” This showed the tension between the Politicians and Lincoln, who could be a reason for his murder.
There have been multiple conspiracy theories related to the death of Lincoln, considering the type of personality he was and the role he created to consolidate the United States of America. The general and expected notion is that John Wilkes Booth murdered him, but investigations are still going on to debunk the death of one of the most prolific leaders the world has ever seen.