John Wilkes Booth: The Father Of Bel-Air, Lincoln

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One of the greatest actors of all time who decided to abandon his career to kill the president was John Wilkes Booth. Booth had a very complicated life; it led him to make wrong decisions, so for that reason, John Wilkes Booth is an ideal person to give advice to. A native of Bel-Air, Maryland, he lived from 1838 to 1865. He won acclaim as a contemporary Shakespearean actor in the 1850’s and 60’s (“John”). People admired his talent; however his life was much more complicated than that. The mid-nineteenth century was also the time period of the Civil War, and John, being born and raised in the South, was a lot more than just an actor at heart. John Wilkes Booth’s personality and fervent commitment to the South led him to make life-changing…show more content…
Ever since he left the militia and morals from John Brown were drilled into his head, he knew he wanted to kill the president, but he did an excellent job at keeping hidden behind his acting career. In fact, just ten days before President Lincoln would make his Gettysburg Address, Lincoln watched a play at Ford’s Theatre starring John Wilkes Booth (Otfinoski 34). Booth had a well-planned, thought-out idea, and he even got his colleagues to work with him. “In 1861 Booth and Powell formed a friendship backstage, late one evening”(Otfinoski 24). Originally, he planned to kidnap the president and take him to the Confederate capital-Richmond; however, after the Confederacy surrendered, John’s anger made him want to kill the president (“Commentary”). As a result, on April 14, 1865, John Wilkes Booth entered the Ford’s Theatre and purposefully killed Abraham Lincoln that evening. “And he probably wondered whether other guests in the box were the type who pose a threat to his plans. It didn’t matter, really; no one was going to stop him from going through with it”(Swanson 33). After that, John was on the run, and while the Union was chasing him and his injured foot was in pain, he finally made the smart decision to consequentially surrender. Booth’s patriotic last words were, “Tell Mother. . . I died for my country”(“John”). As his sister Asia wrote, “‘His feelings were ardent and impulsive; in a moment of devotion or enthusiasm he would grant or give anything he possessed.’ Booth’s strong feelings and his tendency to act impulsively would eventually lead him to commit murder.”(Otfinoski 10). John’s unbreakable determination led him to make the worst and last decisions of his life: kill the president and
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