An eyewitness to President Lincoln’s assassination appeared on television in 1956
In 1956, on an episode of then-popular game show “I’ve Got a Secret,” 96-year-old Samuel J. Seymour tottered out on stage, sat down gingerly beside the program’s host, and proceeded to blow the audience’s mind. Over ninety years earlier, he had witnessed the assassination of Abraham Lincoln at Washington D.C.’s Ford Theatre.
It’s an incredible thing to watch, and The Atlantic’s Rebecca Rosen does a great job of nailing down one of the reasons for why that is.
“The America of Lincoln and the Civil War can feel like distant history,” she writes, “but every now and then, through the appearance of what Jason Kottke has called a “human wormhole,”we are confronted with the brevity of a century and a half.”