Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln’s Killer

John Wilkes Booth was shot and killed this day, April 26, 1865, ending the most comprehensive manhunt in U.S. history. James Swanson tells the story of Booth’s preparation and planning, the assassination of Lincoln, Booth’s escape from Ford theater, and his nearly two weeks on the run. Swanson dispels the myths surrounding the manhunt. In the traditional story, Dr. Samuel Mudd innocently treated Booth’s injured leg and was unjustly persecuted in the witch hunt surrounding the search for the conspirators. Swanson argues persuasively that Mudd was part of Booth’s preexisting conspiracy to kidnap Lincoln. Swanson’s narrative is comprehensive, well-written, and engaging.  Manhhunt: The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln’s Killer will be of interest to students of history or anyone wanting to learn more about this pivitol moment of American history.

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