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John Wilkes Booth Escape Route (shared, public)

List Owner: Bocco

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This series of caches starts at Ford's Theater in Washington, D.C., and ends in Dahlgren, Virginia at the site of the old Garrett Farm where John Wilkes Booth was shot and killed.

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X   GC Code Cache Name  

GC8B0C Virtual Cache 1. The Actor Really Did Break A Leg
  Ford's Theater, where John Wilkes Booth shot President Abraham Lincoln.

After exiting Ford's Theatre, John Wilkes Booth mounted a horse that was being held by Joseph "Peanuts" Buroughs, an innocent theater employee. Booth rode down the alley, turned left up another alley, turned onto "F" Street, and headed toward the Navy Yard Bridge. Although the bridge was guarded by Sergeant Cobb and his detail, no passes had been required for crossing since the first of April. Thus, as the guards were there as a matter of routine rather than of necessity, Booth and fellow conspirator David Herold, who arrived separately, were allowed to pass without hindrance. The two men rendezvoused later and then headed to the Surratt Tavern in Surrattsville (now Clinton, MD) where they arrived shortly after midnight. At the tavern, they picked up supplies (including two Spencer carbines, ammunition, and field glasses) before continuing south.
 

GC1JW1T Traditional Cache 3. Surratt House
  Surratt House & Tavern

After assassinating President Lincoln at Ford's Theater, John Wilkes Booth made his first stop at the Surrattsville tavern along with his accomplice David Herold. The inn keeper, John Lloyd, gave them whisky and the pistols and field glasses. They then proceeded to travel south, helped by many Southern-sympathizers.
The debate rages still about the involvement of Mary Surratt, who was hanged for her supposed role in the plot.
 

GCKHQ7 Traditional Cache 4. Doctor To An Assassin
  The Dr. Samuel Mudd house museum, where Booth had his leg set and spent his first night after the assassination.

At 4:00 a.m. on April 15, John Wilkes Booth and David Herold arrived at the house of Dr. Samuel Mudd. Booth received medical treatment for his injured leg and both men were extended hospitality by the Mudds. Early in the afternoon, April 15, Booth and Herold headed into the nearby Zekiah swamp and were guided by Oswell Swann, a free black.
 

GCXMNK Unknown Cache 5. The Scene Shifter
  Edman Spangler's grave. This is not a part of the Booth Escape Route, but Spangler was involved in the events and his grave is very near Dr. Mudd's home.

Ned Spangler was convicted of helping John Wilkes Booth escape from Ford's Theater. He served a year-and-a-half of his sentence at Fort Jefferson in the Dry Tortugas before being pardoned by President Johnson in March, 1869. After his release from prison, Spangler accepted Dr. Samuel Mudd's offer of five acres of farmland near Mudd's home in Maryland. He lived there from 1869 to 1875, when he died.
 

GCZ18J Traditional Cache 6. He Thought He Was a Hero
  The pine thicket where Booth and Herold hid from April 16 to 21, 1865.

They spent four days in this area concealed in the trees, waiting for an opportunity to cross the Potomac River into Virginia. They were helped by Thomas A. Jones and other members of the Confederate underground who provided them with food and newspapers. It while he was hiding in these woods that Booth discovered that his assassination of Abraham Lincoln was almost universally condemned.
 

GC2T3RZ Unknown Cache 7. Hunted Like a Dog
  April 16 - 22, Rich Hill, Huckleberry, and the Potomac River
After leaving Dr. Mudd’s house, John Wilkes Booth and David Herold, traveled south to Rich Hill, the home of Confederate sympathizer, Samuel Cox, near the town of Bel Alton. Cox did not allow the men to stay at his house, but he did have his overseer, Franklin Robey, take the men to an old confederate mail drop in a pine thicket a mile west of Rich Hill.
Col. Thomas Jones, who was the Chief of the Confederate Secret Service in the area, cared for the men while they were holed up in the pine thicket, and then, when the coast was clear, escorted them to river, stopping briefly at his own house, Huckleberry, where he gave them a meal. Jones provided them with a rowboat and a compass and led them through Dent's Meadow down to the Potomac River.
 

GC27WYQ Traditional Cache 8. "T" is for (Booth) Turned Away
  April 24, Port Conway to Port Royal
Midday of April 24, Booth and Herold arrived at Port Conway. While they were waiting for the ferry to cross the Rappahannock they met a Confederate Soldier named Willie Jett and bragged to him that they were the “Assassinators of the president.” Willie was very impressed and asked for an autograph. Instead, Booth and Herold each wrote Jett a poem. After they made the two hundred yard crossing on the ferry into Port Royal, Jett went and searched for a place for the men to stay. Jett found the Brockenbrough-Peyton home and convinced Sarah Jane Peyton to take them in, saying that Booth was a wounded soldier. Once Sarah met Booth and Herold, though, she changed her mind and told Jett to take them elsewhere, like the Garret place.
Booth realized then that the authorities would catch him soon and he vowed “If they don’t kill me, I’ll kill myself.”
 

GC585QE Wherigo Cache John Wilkes Booth's Escape Route
  Whereigo of the escape route.  
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