Thursday, October 11, 2007

The Real John Wilkes Booth?

John Wilkes Booth Lived at Glen Rose, Texas

Waco Times-Herald
June 3, 1903

Enid, O.T., June 2 – Junius Brutus Booth, the actor and nephew of John Wilkes Booth, the assassin of President Lincoln, has fully identified the remains of the man known as David E. George as his uncle. George, or Booth, committed suicide here January 14 last and in his effects was found a letter directed to E.L. Bates of Memphis, Tenn. By Bates’ instructions the body was embalmed and is today kept here in a secret repository. Mr. Bates came here at once and fully identified the body as John Wilkes Booth. He, however, in order to have his records straight, went east, and has obtained positive identification of the remains from the dead man’s nephew and from Joseph Jefferson, Miss Clara Morris and a score of others who knew him in his early days.

According to Mr. Bates’ story he had acted as Booth’s confidential agent and attorney for nearly forty years. After Lincoln was shot the assassin escaped to the Garrett plantation in Virginia. According to Mr. Bates the man who was killed was a man by the name of Ruddy. Booth had been at Garrett’s for about twenty-four hours, but on the afternoon the alleged captures he had been warned to leave, and did so.

Booth was afterwards taken by friends, and, in the disguise of an old colored man, he made his way to friends in Central Kentucky, where he recuperated his strength and proceeded on his way to the Indian Territory, following the course of the Arkansas river from a point where it empties into the Mississippi.

From here he drifted into Texas and naturally selected the most isolated spot in the state. The place at which Booth settled was Glen Rose Mills, Texas, then on the frontier. There he conducted a store for several years, and it was there in 1871 that Mr. Bates first met him. While there he was known as John St. Helene, but changed his name whenever he moved.

Mr. Bates has four photographs of the man taken at different times in his life, and each is a complete identification of the others. In addition the marks on the body of George were identical with those of Booth.

Mr. Bates has just returned to Enid, and has possession of the remains of Booth and all his effects. He will act as executor of the estate.