The story of Abraham Lincoln assassin John Wilkes Booth demise when he was gunned down in a rural Virginia barn by Union soldiers isn’t the one passed down by the Booth family who believe he escaped capture.
The alternate story was written in the 1907 book “The Escape and Suicide of John Wilkes Booth” authored by Finis L. Bates. In his book, Bates wrote that a Booth look-alike was mistakenly killed in the Virginia barn and Booth then assumed the name John St. Helen. St Helen committed suicide in 1903 in Enid, Oklahoma, 38 years later.
In an effort to end the speculation, the descendants of John Wilkes Booth have agreed to exhume the body of his brother Edwin for DNA testing. Edwin’s DNA would then be compared to a bone specimen of the “man” who was gunned down in the barn. The bone specimen is held at the National Museum of Health and Medicine and the family still needs permission to perform the test.
“Historian Nate Orlowek is also eager to get to the bottom of the story. He’s spent decades investigating the case.”If the man who killed our greatest president got away, and a giant hoax was perpetrated on the American people, then we should know about it.” ”
Here’s the link to the original article in the Philadelphia Enquirer: