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 David Herold

David Herold

Maryland, USA
Death 7 Jul 1865 (aged 23)
Washington, District of Columbia, District Of Columbia, USA
Burial Washington, District of Columbia, District Of Columbia, USA
Plot Range 46, Site 44
Memorial ID 1558 · View Source
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Lincoln Assassination Conspirator. His role in the conspiracy was to help conspirator Lewis Powell in their attempt to assassinate Secretary of State William Seward. Born in 1842, his two brothers died young, leaving him the only boy in a family with eight sisters. For a while he studied pharmacy at Georgetown College, and worked for several druggists in Washington, DC. In the late 1850s, he met John Surratt while attending the Charlotte Hall Military Academy, and through Surratt, met John Wilkes Booth. Booth asked Harold to join the conspiracy to kidnap President Abraham Lincoln, to use Lincoln as exchange for several Confederate officers. The kidnap plan fell through when Lincoln suddenly changed his plans, and Booth then decided to kill the key officials of the United States Government instead. On the night of April 14, 1865, Powell and Herold went to the house of Secretary of State William Seward, and asked to see him. When Lewis Powell attempted to kill Seward with a large knife, stabbing him several times (Seward would survive the attack), and as Seward struggled with Powell, the commotion caused Herold to panic. Abandoning Powell, Herold rode off to link up later with John Wilkes Booth, who had just mortally wounded Lincoln at Ford's Theater. When Booth and Herold were cornered twelve days later, at Garrett's Barn near Port Royal, Virginia, Herold surrendered to the Union soldiers, while Booth fought and was killed. Tried by military court for the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the conspiracy to murder most of Lincoln's cabinet officers, Herold was found guilty and sentenced to hang. He was hung on July 7, 1865, at the Washington, DC Penitentiary, along with three other conspirators, Lewis Powell, Mary Surratt, and George Atzerodt. His remains were interred at the foot of the family plot but no marker was placed. When his sister Mary A. Herold, died in 1917, the present marker was installed.

Bio by: Kit and Morgan Benson


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 1 Jan 2001
  • Find A Grave Memorial 1558
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for David Herold (16 Jun 1842–7 Jul 1865), Find A Grave Memorial no. 1558, citing Congressional Cemetery, Washington, District of Columbia, District Of Columbia, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .