back to top
| John Wilkes Booth in the 1850s was a member of the militia in Virginia. He was in uniform witnessing the hanging of John Brown in 1859, which was an event that gave him considerable satisfaction.
By 1860, he was one of the best known actors in the country, making over $20,000. per year. That was an immense sum in those days. One can understand why he didn't want to give that up. His sympathies, however, were well known. In 1862, he was arrested in St. Louis for making anti-government remarks.