Assassination of President Lincoln
E.B. & E.C. Kellogg, 1865
From the beginning of the Civil War, John Wilkes Booth was outspoken in his support of the South and the institution of slavery, as well as his deep hatred of President Lincoln. During the war, Booth actively participated in a conspiracy that originally included different plans to kidnap the President, at least one of which involved kidnapping Lincoln on his daily commute to the Soldiers' Home. A few days after Lincoln's second inauguration, Booth attended a brief speech Lincoln gave to crowds assembled in front of the White House. It was the first time the President publicly spoke in support of granting African Americans the right to vote. Hearing these remarks, Booth commented to fellow conspirator David Herold, "Now, by God, I'll put him through. That's the last speech he'll ever make."
For Booth and his co-conspirators, kidnapping was no longer a viable option -- assassination was their only course of action.