Last Surviving Witness of the Lincoln Assassination

‘Samuel James Seymour’s appearance on the CBS television show, “I’ve Got a Secret.”, 1956. At 96 years of age, Seymour was the last surviving person present at Ford’s Theater the night Abraham Lincoln was assassinated by John Wilkes Booth (April 14, 1865).

‘Only five years old at the time, Mr. Seymour traveled with his father to Washington D.C. on a business trip, where they attended a performance of Our American Cousin.’

-  Open Culture

Thank you to Brainpickings

This capsule was curated by John Pollock

7 comments to Last Surviving Witness of the Lincoln Assassination

  • _mark

    awesome. thank you.

  • Deb

    So, in 1956, the year I was born, there were still people alive that were witness to the death of Abraham Lincoln. As a native of Springfield, Illinois, this is always a wonderment to me. Thank you!

  • Leopold Stotch

    Remarkable, too, that Matt Damon appears on the panel and asks the first questions.

  • AimeeLC

    Wow! Absolutely fascinating. It’s so wonderful to contemplate all the changes those in their 90′s have witnessed, particularly given the breakneck speed of change in America’s young past. Thank you for sharing this. It serves as a reminder to me talk to those older, wiser people around me when I have the opportunity. My own grandparents are long gone, but I find many older folks are very happy to reminisce with an interested listener.

  • Steven Blackwood

    Can I have his carton of Winston’s. It is indeed amazing that I was 6 when this episode aired. Thanks for finding this clip.

  • No!

    Yeah. Matt Damon really is smart. Like a timewarp, huh?

  • Tim Thomason

    Mr. Seymour died two months later (April 12th, 2 days before the 91st Anniversary of Lincoln’s death – he was actually 95 here but 96 before he died). I hope the fall down the Hotel stairs didn’t contribute to his death.

    It’s kind of sad if ‘I’ve Got a Secret’ killed the last living link to the Lincoln assassination.

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