Around 1950, Otto Eisenschiml, an industrial chemist residing in Chicago, offered an addenda to his 1937 book, Why Was Lincoln Murdered? In that book, Eisenschiml had “presented certain facts, heretofore overlooked, which seemed to throw unfavorable light on Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton and the Northern Radicals, and I [Eisenschiml] recommended further investigation.”
The “Northern Radicals” were the abolitionist faction of the then-fledgling Republican Party.
Additional findings gleaned by Eisenschiml were placed in two subsequent books: In The Shadow of Lincoln’s Death (1940), and The Case of A.L…., Aged 56 (1943). These subsequent books are now difficult to obtain, but Eisenschiml’s earlier book, Why Was Lincoln Murdered?, has again been published.
By the hand of fate, early in 1948 a copy of the May 2, 1868 issue of a rare magazine, The People’s Weekly, was found. In a room of an old building at 1622 St. Paul Street, Baltimore, in back of a mirror, there gaped a hollow space. In that hollow space “reposed a pocket-handy gun lying on the magazine, yellowed with age and partly torn, but otherwise in fair condition.”
What Eisenschiml called the “outstanding piece of interest” in the magazine was an editorial entitled, “That Wicked Old Man.”
Secretary of War Edwin Stanton had managed to get President Andrew Johnson to offer a reward of $100,000 “for the arrest of men who had no more to do with the assassination [of Abraham Lincoln] than the man in the moon.”
In the summer of 1865, an un-named stenographer belonging to the “trial of the conspirators” quietly offered the editor of The People’s Weekly his theory about the Lincoln assassination. It was Thaddeus Stevens, leader of the “Radical” faction of the Republican Party, who had “warmed into life the brutal instincts of [Edwin] Stanton, [Joseph] Holt and [Lafayette] Baker, to have Lincoln assassinated.”
Abraham Lincoln had been left in the power of the abolitionists. But Lincoln was conciliatory towards the South. He did not favor the 13th amendment, contrary to the mythification of Old Abe promoted in the new Lincoln movie (directed by Steven Spielberg. And notice the name SPIELberg: the movie is his SPIEL, a lengthy and extravagant argument.)
The abolitionists had forced upon Lincoln “his” Emancipation Proclamation. And the constitutionality of that Proclamation was bound to be questioned. Lincoln confided to a “Judge Campbell” that he wanted to “put down” the “fanatics and abolitionists.”
The 13th amendment was passed by the House on January 31, 1865. But it still had to be voted on by the various states. It was not until December 18, 1865 that Secretary of State William Seward declared the 13th amendment to have been adopted. About a month before he was murdered, Abraham Lincoln had ordered General Godfrey Weitzel to reconvene the Virginia Legislature; “the object of the call was that they should vote against the Constitutional amendment abolishing slavery.”
It was the opinion of the editor of The People’s Weekly that this reconvening of the Virginia Legislature (soon counter-manded under pressure from Stanton, in defiance of the President) was the last straw. Thaddeus Stevens, “That Wicked Old Man,” and his vindictive fury soon gave life to the embryo spirit of assassination in Edwin Stanton and Joseph Holt.
(Source: Addenda To Lincoln’s Assassination, by Otto Eisenschiml)