Edman “Ned” Spangler

Edman “Ned” Spangler

York, York County, Pennsylvania, USA
Death 7 Feb 1875 (aged 49)
Waldorf, Charles County, Maryland, USA
Burial Waldorf, Charles County, Maryland, USA
Plot Southeast corner of the cemetery, near Poplar Road
Memorial ID 4296 · View Source
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Lincoln Assassination Conspirator. Although convicted by the court, his role in the conspiracy is doubted by many. Born in York, Pennsylvania, he spent the majority of his life in Baltimore, Maryland. During the Civil War, he came to Washington, DC, and began working as a carpenter and scene shifter at Ford's Theater, often sleeping in the theater or in the stable in the back of the theater. On the afternoon of April 14, 1865, Mr. Ford asked him to prepare the state box for the president's visit that evening. He brought in furniture and removed the partion between two boxes, allowing them to be made into one large box. At 9:30 PM that evening, actor John Wilkes Booth arrived at the theater and asked Spangler to hold his horse for him, while he went into the theater. Spangler, who had work inside the theater to do, asked Joseph Burroughs, another Ford's Theater employee, to hold the horse. Immediately after the assassination, there was a lot of commotion backstage, and Jacob Ritterspaugh, another Ford worker, chased after Booth, but told the court that Spangler hit him in the face and told him, "Don't say which way he went." Spangler was arrested on April 17, and charged with being an accomplice to Booth. He was found guilty of conspiracy, and was sentenced to six years in prison. Three other conspirators, Dr. Samuel Mudd, Samuel Arnold and Michael O'Laughlen were given life in prison, and all four men were sent to Fort Jefferson, Florida, in the Dry Tortugas, to serve out their sentences. On March 1, 1869, President Andrew Johnson pardoned Spangler and Arnold, and both men were released. After his release, he traveled to Dr. Mudd's home (Mudd had been released three weeks earlier than Spangler), as the two men had become friends in prison, and Mudd gave him five acres of land to farm. Spangler died there in 1875. After Spangler's death, Mudd found a statement in Spangler's tool chest, in which Spangler stated that he never heard Booth speak of politics, hatred of Lincoln, or anything of the conspiracy. When he heard the shot, he saw a man he did not immediately recognize run across the stage, and he denied aiding Booth in any manner whatsoever.

Bio by: Kit and Morgan Benson

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Added: 5 Jan 1999
  • Find a Grave Memorial 4296
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Edman “Ned” Spangler (10 Aug 1825–7 Feb 1875), Find a Grave Memorial no. 4296, citing Saint Peters Cemetery Original, Waldorf, Charles County, Maryland, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .