From the book jacket:
The murder of Abraham Lincoln set off the greatest
manhunt in American history -- the pursuit and capture of John Wilkes Booth.
From April 14 to April 26, 1865, the assassin led Union cavalry and detectives
on a wild twelve-day chase through the streets of Washington, D.C., across the
swamps of Maryland, and into the forests of Virginia, while the nation, still
reeling from the just-ended Civil War, watched in horror and sadness.
At the very center of this story is John Wilkes Booth, America's notorious
villain. A Confederate sympathizer and a member of a celebrated acting family,
Booth threw away his fame and wealth for a chance to avenge the South's defeat.
For almost two weeks, he confounded the manhunters, slipping away from their
every move and denying them the justice they sought.
Beyond the Book
Booth's father, Junius Brutus Booth, emigrated from England in 1821 and
quickly established himself as one of the great actors of the day. Most of
his children were born out of wedlock, and most followed him onto the stage.
John Wilkes Booth started his career in 1855 in Baltimore, and then in
Philadelphia. Initially, he didn't show promise but in 1858 he moved to
Richmond, Virginia where he became more confident as an actor and grew popular with audiences.
He temporarily enlisted in the Confederate army in 1959 in order to witness the
hanging of abolitionist John Brown - afterwards he returned to Richmond and was
discharged. He did not fight in the Civil War (apparently having promised
his mother that he would not join the Confederate army). However,...