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Author Topic: Tad Lincoln  (Read 981 times)
Bronte
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« on: June 22, 2012, 06:50:07 PM »

I was wondering if anyone on here knows how the assassination of his father and the death of his brother affected him? I know I'll probably get slammed for this comment but I personally feel like his mother she have forced herself out of bed and onto that train in order to show her youngest child that he still had a parent to turn to during such a nightmare.I know that most will say that Mary was a basket case and that she would not have been any support to him.I can speak from experience because I have lost both of my parents and I was just 16 when my mom passed on and just having my father sitting next to me during the funeral proceedings was a great comfort.I have always wondered what all of that tramatic stress did to his mental make-up.I'm sorry but it had to have damaged him in many ways that probably were not even spoken.I have compassion for Mary one cannot begin to understand how she felt .She basically buried her entire family except for her oldest who in my opinion did her a terrible wrong later on in her life.But she should have made the effort to be there even if it meant being doped-up in order to get herself prepared to face her reality.I'm sure that Tad would have loved just knowing that she was nearby because sometimes thats all we need is to feel the presense of our loved ones around us during a time of mourning. Cry
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Gene C
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« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2012, 07:50:40 PM »

In the book "The Lincolns  Portait of a Marriage" by Daniel Mark Epstein,  when Willie dies, Mary becomes a basket case and President Lincoln increased his attention and time with Tad.  Senator Orville Browning (Republican of IL) was a great help to the Lincoln family "Every afternoon, when he was finished with his work at the Senate, Browning hurried to the White House, where he sat by Tad's bedside reading or talking to the child, or watching him sleep, until two o'clock, in the morning.  Sometimes Browning was alone, and sometimes Eliza sat by his side." (softbound p. 367-368).   Family friends and many of the staff try to help fill the void to give comfort and attention to Tad.

I don't know who helps out after the assassination.  Robert does to some extent, but I don't know how much and for how long.

This is not my favorite book about President Lincoln, there are some things in this book that are controversial and I don't believe, it did offer an insight into the marriage and family life of the Lincoln's that was informative.  (Mrs Lincoln was not an easy women to live with (BIG MOOD SWINGS), but she was a very compasionate lady.  She did some stuff that greatly perplexed Mr. Lincoln and caused him great anxiety. 

I agree with you about Mary, but she had her own set of problems and may not have been mentally capable of dealing with her grief.

« Last Edit: June 22, 2012, 08:03:54 PM by Gene C » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2012, 07:50:45 PM »

     One of the saddest assassination side notes I've seen is the account of Gideon Welles entering the White House on the morning April 15th. and being asked by Tad - "Mr. Welles, who killed my father?" Also, his insistence that he learn to dress himself, as he wasn't the President's son anymore - he was just like all the other little boys.
     As far as Mary Lincoln forcing herself out of bed to help Tad, she was very unstable in the best of times. By April '65, she had buried 2 sons. Her outbursts and tantrums scream to me she suffered from some kind of mental illness. The death and loss must have only magnified that. Lincoln was upbraided by a grocer in Illinois once after the man suffered one of Mary's outbursts. His reply was - "You ought to be able to stand for 15 minutes what I've stood for 15 years." A tough gal to live with, I'm sure.
     Willie and Tad, although of different temperaments, were very close. After Willie's death, Tad became closely glued to Lincoln's side. A joke in Washington was if you had a secret to keep, don't tell Lincoln - he'll tell Tad. To lose his father in such a violent manner must have been a crushing blow. I've also heard Tad was a big Booth fan. Booth supposedly presented him with a rose after a performance at Grover's. Had he lived longer, we may have seen the effects, but who knows. Robert saw all Tad did and more. His reputation as being taciturn and moody may be due to all he endured. The Lincoln's surely saw more tragedy than most.    
     My favorite quote about Tad was from John Hay - "He had a very bad opinion of books and no opinion of discipline."
« Last Edit: June 22, 2012, 08:06:04 PM by BoothBuff » Logged
Dan
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« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2012, 11:30:28 AM »

Excellent post Joe. Kind of hits home the impact that victims famlies have to endure. A couple of questions I think about is if JWB was taken from the barn, stood trial, was convicted and sentenced to death would he have conducted himself on the gallows as  J. Brown or L. Powell did? Would he have stood trial with the rest? Would his execution be carried out with the rest of the conspirators. Does Mary hang if Booth is caught? 
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Randal
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« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2012, 05:30:39 PM »

I don't think Mary would hang if Booth was caught, the reason being, before Herold surrended, Booth allegely told Baker, "he is innocent of any crime", referring to Herold.

If Booth sat with the conspirators at the trial, I don't think Mary would be sitting with them. I surely don't think Booth would throw her under-the-bus, as he didn't Herold.
Also I think Stanton would be satisfied if he "paraded" Booth's capture as the main culprit or "prize", and would downplay Mary's involvement much like Sam Arnold, et.al., and would sentence Mary to serve time. JWB was the guy they originally wanted, but with Corbett taking him out of that scenario, they re-wrote the script. "Someone" was going to be made an example, and those four fit the bill nicely.
IMO.
« Last Edit: June 23, 2012, 05:38:25 PM by Randal » Logged

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jonathan
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« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2012, 09:09:11 PM »

That's an interesting point about Booth saying Herold was innocent. I've kind of been of the opinion that Booth didn't really care about the others, only himself. But telling the troops that Herold was innocent needs to be considered for sure. That was very much a "heat of the moment" situation, however, and I wonder if he might have approached things differently had he been captured and trotted back up to Washington for a trial. I can imagine how he might find himself in that "if I'm going down, they're going down with me" situation.
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Randal
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« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2012, 09:30:39 PM »

Excellent point!
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"It was a walking graveyard"
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