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16  General Category / Steven G. Miller's "Just For the Record" / Re: new photo of Lincoln's funeral in New York? on: March 25, 2014, 07:29:21 PM
Looks like a great find. Thanks for posting this Steve! Don't forget to watch " Diggers " tonight at ten on Nat Geo.
" following the trail of John Wilkes Booth"  Smiley
17  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Ride to Zekiah Swamp on: March 25, 2014, 06:47:09 PM
Devil's advocate?  Shocked  Well, now that you mention it, go to page 666 (The Evidence) and read the statement
of David Herold. For those who do not have a copy, here ya go..

 "I went to Maryland between the 21st and the 1st of April, when the horse fell with me"
 "In jumping a fence I knocked my ankle out of place, and was in bed for two weeks"

Mary Surratt said to John Lloyd " speak of the devil.... Grin
18  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Herold's Confession on: March 25, 2014, 10:02:29 AM
Hi Rick,
Here is a portion of Herold's statement on page. 677 in The Evidence, Edwards & Steers

" I am going; I don't intend to be burnt alive". I went to the door and knocked. Booth says "Let him out;
that young man is innocent." " The capain then said to me, " Whoever you are, come out with your hands up."
I did so. He took a pair of gloves and a piece of map; that was all I had. The officer says, "Come, stand by the house". He caught me by  the colllar, and as I turned around I heard a pistol shot, looked around, and saw the corner of the barn in a blaze. They jerked the barn door open. Booth was lying there.

I'm with you Rick, I believe that Booth died at the Garrett's farm, and Herold seems to confirm that the man in the barn was Booth. The name Boyd was just a cover, IMO
19  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Ride to Zekiah Swamp on: March 25, 2014, 09:12:32 AM
Crowza, listening to the gunshots in the video, do you think that the weapons you mentioned might be a little louder? My first concern about Cox's story (about being on the hill and hearing the shots) was that a pistol shot might not be heard from the distance I'm testing from.
20  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Ride to Zekiah Swamp on: March 25, 2014, 08:22:45 AM
Crowza, you have a great point. I need to ask you some questions about black powder weapons! hang on...

 Here's the way Thomas Jones explains it in his book..
Allen's Fresh is about three miles east of my house, was and still is, a small village situated where Zachiah Swamp ends and the Wicomico River begins. I had not been long in the village when a body of cavalry; Some soldiers enterd Colton's store, where I was sitting; Walton came in and exclaimed, "Boys, I have news that they have been seen in St. Mary's ; and galloped off across the bridge in the direction of St. Mary's County. I left Allen's Fresh about dusk; It was dark by the time I reached the place; the spot where the man who was to test his fate that night was lying.
The route we had to take was down the cart track; to the public road; a distance of about one mile and a half , then down the public road for another mile to the corner of my farm; then to the river, about one mile further, making about three and a half miles; with difficulty Booth was raised by Herold and myself and placed upon my horse.

The distance between B&H and Dent's Meadow is approximately three and a half miles. The way I see it, is pretty much the way Jones told it. He left  Allen's Fresh at dusk and rode up to B&H's hiding spot. Then traveled one and half miles to the public road, exiting the pines across from  Equality Farm (Stone) and after stopping at Huckleberry went to Dent's Meadow. (marked out in red on the map) I believe that Jones' directions were accurate. I have the supporting land documents for the location of the cart track and also a letter from Cox Jr. to Osborn Oldroyd that describes the route exiting the pines oppisite from Equality farm.

Confederate agents Thomas Harbin and Joseph Baden were in Newport & Allen's Fresh during the same time as Booth and Herold, and were all seen by James Owens at Newport. It was most likely that these men were helping Booth and Herold move in and out of the pines with their own horses.

I'm sure that Augustas Howell would have been with them, but he was locked up in the Old Capitol Prison after being arrested at the Surratt Tavern on March 24th.
21  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Ride to Zekiah Swamp on: March 24, 2014, 08:12:18 PM
Bill, please accept my apology for being rude and not answering your questions. There is no excuse for it and I'm truly sorry. Letting my frustrations get the best of me is not the answer.  
I'll find the map that coincides with Thomas Jones' story that he was in Allen's Fresh and retrieved Booth and Herold in the pines near Equality Farm and then headed for the Potomac River. I'll put a post together for tomorrow. If I ever convince you and Smith that this thing is real, I'll give this whole thing to both of you. By that I mean every bit of research, notes, tape recordings, video, photographs and anything else that I have which supports this so that the story can be told. I only have the bits and pieces, (no pun intended); you know how to put them together to create story. I can't think of any others who have a deeper interest in the horses than you and Rick, and a story like this, IMO, deserves to be told by professionals. Heck, I struggle just to blog about this stuff, so it won't be coming from me.. Although it would be perfectly understandable if you chose not to, I have to offer up the research to someone willing to write about it.

Booth and Herold were missing for five days in the area of Bel Alton/ Allen's Fresh and it's an important part of the story needs to be told.

Thanks Randal, and thank you too Cliff!
You're a good man Rick Smith  Wink

Joe G.
22  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Ride to Zekiah Swamp on: March 24, 2014, 02:02:44 PM
If you search keywords Booth's and Herold's Horses you should be able to find the answers to many of your questions. You can also Google or Yahoo
these keywords and it will direct you to the leading sites on the web. I also placed a map on this site that
showed the route that Booth and Herold used while moving through the pines. I'll see if I can find it.
23  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Ride to Zekiah Swamp on: March 24, 2014, 12:39:48 PM
.... I love you guys!  Grin   You always stay on the fence.  So, we're all done here?
24  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Ride to Zekiah Swamp on: March 24, 2014, 08:55:27 AM
They are interesting scenieros for sure, but if Booth, Herold, Jones and the "white boy", who most believe was
Sam Cox Jr., went to Dent's Meadow together, then could you fellas tell us how this played out. This is not
the story that many historians, researchers and authors write in their books. As a matter of fact, this is the only
time that a story has ever been told of Booth, Herold, Jones and the boy riding seperate horses to the Potomac River, literally going against everything that everyone has learned. Please list your sources...

I'll stick to some of the more traditional sources to back my beliefs regarding Booth's and Heold's horses.

 "I am the only person living who knows where the horses ridden by Booth and Herold were taken and shot by Franklin Robey, who lived upon one of Col. Cox's farms"...

Samuel Cox Jr. to Osborn Oldroyd; Assasination of Lincoln; Flight,Pursuit,Capture, Punishment1901 p. 269
" One terror was that the two horses the men had ridden down from Washington would whinny when the heard the cavalry horses nearby. There was nothing to do but lead them out to a marshy place in the woods and shoot them, leaving their bodies to sink into the bog and disappear. This did not happen as quickly as Jones thought as he saw the buzzards circling above the carcasses"

             Twenty Days; Dorothy Merserve Kunhardt And Phillip B. Kunhardt Jr. 1965  pg.203

" Cox said that sometime after the horses were killed he rode down to where he had heard the pistol dicharged and searched minutely in everythicket or briar clump in the neighborhood, but could not discover a trace of them".
                   Thomas Jones ; J Wilkes Booth, His Sojourn in Southern Maryland;   1893  pg.82

 "Cox had Herold advised to take the horses down into Zekiah Swamp [ about a half mile eastward ] and shoot them with his revolver, which he did."
                            George Alfred Towsend; How Wilkes Booth Crossed the Potomac

" Mr. Robey knew of  certain quicksands and to these he and Herold rode the horses and shot them as they sank bridled and saddled. A martingale ring was broken off in the passage through the undergrowth which Mr Robey kept."

                                    Obituary of Franklin Robey; Port Tobacco Crescent, 1896
                    John & Roberta Wearmouth; Thomas Jones Chief Agent Confedrerate Secret Sevice

"Secretary of War, Edwin Stanton assumed the horses were still alive. In a telegraph to Major General Hancock in Bryantown, on April 27, he states":

  "Their horses were left in the swamp and should be secured: also all persons who aided in their concealment"

                                Shall We Gather At The River by Randal Berry 2011  pg.27

" Meanwhile, Booth's mare had broken her bridle, and their slow-moving guide, Thomas Jones, found her grazing near the pin thicket. The fugitives could ill afford to have her running loose, Hundreds of people had been given a description of this horse, and if she were discovered, soldiers would intensify their search of the area. Jones advised the fugitives to get rid of her, and Herold's horse as well. Franklin Robey, Cox's overseer, and Herold led the anilmals down to the swamp. Pulling them into deep water, they shot both horses and watched their carcasses sink beneath the surface. Now even the vultures wouldn't find them."
                                      American Brutus ; Michael W. Kauffman 2004  pg.259

" Now, our troubles began (when) squad after squad of soldiers marched up to the house to search and question. I will remember about the begining or the middle of the week succeeding their (Booth/ Herold ) departure from this neighborhood, a command of negro troops surrounded the house and searched freom garret to cellar. They left and deployed toward Zekiah Swamp lying east-southeast from Rich Hill.

After they left, Pa and I went on the hill overlooking Zakiah Swamp and as the negroes entered the swamp we could see the buzzards hovering over where the slain horses were sinking out of sight in the mire of Zakiah bog. But they were never discovered and their fate would have never been told, but that Thomas A. Jones, the surviving principle in the affair was induced some five or six years ago to disclose the secret to George Alfred Townsend. ".
                                       Except from an 1891 letter written by Samuel Cox Jr.
                                                            Thank You John Howard  Wink

25  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Ride to Zekiah Swamp on: March 23, 2014, 11:33:04 AM
26  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Lost and Found on: March 23, 2014, 10:45:51 AM
Thanks Gene,
I believe that Jim & Rich deserve all of the credit on this one. I was at a complete standstill until I mentioned it to Rich Smyth. They went above and beyond my expectations as the lead detectives in this case.
27  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Ride to Zekiah Swamp on: March 23, 2014, 07:52:00 AM
While the source for this chemists point of view is not available, it sure sounds accurate.
"The body will first sink due to the rigor mortis. Because there's no ATP the myosinheads stay attached to the tropomyosin causing the contraction of the muscles and thus a higher density of the body then water.  A newly dead human being, or any other animal, will sink when placed in water. After the gases of decomposition build up in the chest and abdomen, however, the body will inflate, rise like a hydrogen-filled balloon, and pop to the surface, sometimes dragging with it surprisingly heavy weights that a murderer might have thought sufficient to keep it down. With the passage of time and further decomposition, however, the body cavities eventually rupture, the gas escapes, and the corpse goes down again, this time for good.

There is one notable exception: sometimes, due to air caught in the clothing, a body will stay on the surface for several hours before sinking.

Bodies usually stay underwater for between one and two weeks, although this varies widely and some bodies never come up at all. One of the factors which affects this is the temperature of the water.

This photo of the (still frozen) relic site was taken in early March.

At least three days had lapsed before the troops went to the swamp after searching Cox's house.
How many days would it take for the horses to rise to the surface? Either way, by the time the troops entered the
swamp, the horses had either came up and sunk again or had not risen to the surface at all.

28  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Ride to Zekiah Swamp on: March 23, 2014, 05:53:21 AM
I think with little difficulty, a man who knew the swamp could lead one horse in at a time or perhaps Robey and Herold shot both at the same time. Speculation about the exact moment and manner in which the horses were disposed of is something I try not to think about. I have had pets since childhood and the thought that someone would do something lke this bothers the **** of me, but on the flip side of that, I have also come to the realization that it was necessary for the Coxes to do this in order to protect themselves. Again, common sense leads to self preservation.

Besides that, I can't believe that you fellas have adopted the Finis Bates version of events..

Dana says that Booth and Herold killed their horses while they were in hiding back of the Cox plantation...
...but Booth says the horses were not killed but were taken away, as he supposed, by Mr. Jones. That this is true, I am inclined to believe, for two reasons; First, the horses ridden by Booth and described to me by St Helen ( or Booth) was a fine and valuable animal.. The second reason was that Gen. Dana's men were to close on Booth & Herold to permit of the killing of their  horses, which must have been done by shooting them.

                                                                           Finis Bates; The Escape and Suicide of John Wilkes Booth

I spent some time with the boys down at Zekiah Swamp yesterday and they were gracious enough to go to the relic site and fire off some rounds so that we can all hear for ourselves what Samuel Cox may have heard that day nearly 150 years ago. At a distance of more than half a mile,12- guage shotguns were used for this experiment.

               Listen closely... how many shots did you hear?
Again, there was no one living here and there were no troops in the swamp at night, so I can dispel the myth that everyone in the neighborhood, including the soldiers, would have immediately swarmed the location. The soldiers were camped out
three miles away at Chapel Point.

Even if someone heard those shots, they would have no clue where to search. Can you tell where the shots came from, based on the video?   ....I couldn't either. The video is spanning about one mile along the edge of the Zekiah.
I also made arrangements for your next visit.
29  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Lost and Found on: March 23, 2014, 05:29:41 AM
Thanks Rick,
Without the help and knowledge of folks like Jim Garrett and Rich Smyth, I never would have been able to match up Mrs. Keller's story with an actual document. I knew that Ford's Theatre had a book on it's restoration, but was unaware that the Petersen house had one as well until Jim found it.  A fascinating relic for sure!
30  General Category / All Things Lincoln Assassination / Re: Ride to Zekiah Swamp on: March 21, 2014, 07:58:03 PM
Thomas Jones claimed he had no hand in the disposition of the horses but on page 81 he says..
 "After the fugitives crossed the river, and just before I was arrested, Cox told me that he stood on the hill near his house and saw Herold taking the two horses down toward Zachiah Swamp and heard the report of the pistol that killed them."

I'll dig out my copy of the Owens Statement and have a go at it tomorrow.
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