You’d think all the Lincoln documents would’ve been unearthed, after 150 years of access, but you’d be wrong, thankfully.
The latest news is Charles Leale’s official report on the assassination. Leale’s experiences are already well-documented – Sarah Vowell quotes extensively from a letter to his mother in the days following – but new documents are new documents, and I’ll happily take them. (Can you tell I was a history student? So jealous of these stack-diggers who uncover the gems!)
A doctor’s account of his frantic efforts to save the life of President Abraham Lincoln has been rediscovered in the United States, after being lost to history for 150 years.
It was found by chance among hundreds of boxes of old medical reports in the National Archives.
On April 14, 1865, Dr Charles Leale happened to be in the same Washington theatre as the US President, watching the play My American Cousin, when he heard a gunshot and saw a man leap onto the stage.
Leale, 23, who had only received his medical degree six weeks earlier, then became the first person to tend to Lincoln’s wounds and documented the tragic encounter in a 21-page handwritten report.