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Thread: Did John Wilkes Booth die in Enid?

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    Default Did John Wilkes Booth die in Enid?

    http://www.enidnews.com/cnhi/enidnew...secondarystory

    Preacher.....I ran across this and thought about Angel from a previous post you made. It's an interesting what if anyway.............

    This past week I followed a young woman up a flight of darkened stairs in one of Enid?s oldest downtown buildings. The stairs squeaked and occasionally popped under our feet. One hundred and three years ago, when it was the Grand Avenue Hotel, a house painter and local barfly committed suicide in one of the hotel?s upstairs rooms. His deathbed statement sparked a national controversy in 1903. The young woman was taking me to the room where he died a painful and violent death.

    The building is now, and has for several decades been, home to Enid?s Garfield Furniture Co.

    At the end of the stairway she opened a door. We crossed a hallway. She stopped and opened a second door, revealing a long narrow room with a high ceiling. It looked more like a jail cell than a hotel room. There was one window facing Grand Avenue.

    There was no bathroom, no running water ? not even a wash basin.

    On the left was a small wrought iron bed, its springs covered with a thin mattress-like pad covered in a faded-pink material. When I was a kid we called these daybeds.

    At the foot of the bed there was a chair and a small round table. On the table sat a crusty looking kerosene lamp that looked as if it hadn?t been lighted in 100 years. I felt like I had walked into a tomb. The air was chilly and damp in this unheated portion of the old building.

    There was no floor covering in the room, and what at some time in the building?s history may have been elegant red and gold wallpaper was severely faded now and peeling off the walls. Some of the plastering was missing from the ceiling revealing the wooden slats.

    The room smelled old and it looked old. It was very depressing. It is the room where David E. George, a house painter from Texas who frequently quoted at length from Shakespeare?s plays in Enid bars, ingested strychnine, a powerful poison, on Jan.13, 1903, and died writhing in agony.

    But before he breathed his last he told a physician who had been summoned to the hotel he really was John Wilkes Booth, the assassin who had killed President Abraham Lincoln 38 years earlier.

    It wasn?t the first time George had ?confessed.? He made a similar revelation years before in Texas when he thought he was dying. He lived in Texas under another name. In fact some say there were two earlier confessions when he had thought death was imminent.

    There also is more than one story about what happened after the assassination. One story is Confederate sympathizers spirited him away, and he traveled incognito across the South, and down through Texas to Mexico.

    He also supposedly told the story that after the assassination friends had taken him down the Potomac River to a place where he boarded a steamer for Europe. He said he had lived in Europe for 15 years before returning to the United States.

    Well, JohnWilkes Booth was a Shakespearean actor, and they say George could recite Shakespeare at will, reinforcing the story George was an actor. Booth broke a leg in his leap to the stage after shooting Lincoln. An examination revealed George also had broken a leg. He was Booth?s height and weight too, and resembled the actor.

    And, of course, everyone remembered the doubt in the minds of the public following the chase and capture right after the assassination of the man presumed to be Booth, and the haste and secrecy of his burial.

    Why would anyone on his deathbed confess to such a crime, not once, but several times, if it were not true? Why would he lie at a time like that? He had nothing to gain by lying.

    George?s unclaimed remains were embalmed by the local Penniman?s Funeral Parlor, using arsenic, which did a marvelous job of preserving the remains. Penniman retained custody of the mummified remains for a number of years. He would tie the embalmed and fully dressed body to a rocking chair and display it in the store front window of the funeral parlor with a newspaper laying across its lap.

    A Tennessee lawyer named Bates bought the body and kept it in his barn for 20 years while he tried to collect the reward offered by the government for Booth.

    For a number of years George?s body was displayed at amusement parks and carnival sideshows in many states, before finally disappearing. There was a vague story going around several decades ago someone had seen the remains in a box in the basement of a building in some Midwestern city. But, when the man went back a few years later the building was gone. Only a parking lot remained.

    If he really was John Wilkes Booth, his restless remains may still be seeking a peaceful repose.
    When Injustice Becomes Law....Rebellion Becomes Duty


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    Administrator SalBO's Avatar
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    thats pretty morbid...good read though
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    Friend of MCMXI Preacher's Avatar
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    Well, the family story always was that he died an old man in a hotel room. Kinda checks out. I'll check with the historians of the bunch and see if they tell the same story.
    You only have the rights you are willing to fight for.
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    Preacher the ol family story may hold water, huh? Let us know
    When Injustice Becomes Law....Rebellion Becomes Duty


    The only thing wrong with Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address was that it was the South, not the North, that was fighting for a government of the people, by the people and for the people."

    -- H. L. Mencken

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    Quote Originally Posted by Preacher
    Well, the family story always was that he died an old man in a hotel room. Kinda checks out. I'll check with the historians of the bunch and see if they tell the same story.
    What family story?
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    Friend of MCMXI Preacher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scubadvr
    What family story?
    Angel's Great Great(can't remember how many Great's) Grandmother was a sister to John Wilkes Booth. They claimed that he never died in the tobacco barn and that he lived to be an old man.
    You only have the rights you are willing to fight for.
    I Like 1911's.

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    GuncoHolic D.B.Cooper's Avatar
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    I dont care which way he died, Im just glad it was slow and painful, same with any other traitor.

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    GuncoHolic BigAl's Avatar
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    I think I saw his embalmed remains in the corner of 's garage....next to the asbestos...

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    DADDY WARBUCKS Custer's Avatar
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    Shows how conspiracy theories are not just modern creations.

    Somehow we want to believe people of note did not die. There must be some human need for this.

    Sort of like the Jesse James, Billy the Kid and even JFK sightings and issues that linger, just to name a few.

    Of course, there is Elvis, too...
    Everyone had you pegged.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Preacher
    Well, the family story always was that he died an old man in a hotel room. Kinda checks out. I'll check with the historians of the bunch and see if they tell the same story.
    Wow I remember you telling us.If this is true its amazing.However studying the "official" way booth was too have died in the barn barricade incident I always had a hunch somthing was fishy.
    "In the absence of orders, go find something and kill it." -Erwin Rommel

    "Keep going. Don't look left or right, only forward. . . The enemy is confused; we must take advantage of it." -Erwin Rommel after crossing the Meuse River in France

    "Tonight your objective is strategic,you cant give the enemy a break.Send him to hell."
    Lieutenant Colonel Benjamin Vandervoort-John Wayne,The Longest Day.





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