Hey, Readers. Those of you who have read my blog for a while likely know of my fascination (that’s probably the wrong word to use) with JFK’s assassination. I still maintain that America lost some of its innocence that day, but that is another matter.
Of the forty-five men who have served in the role of president, four died of natural causes while in office – William Henry Harrison, Zachary Taylor, Warren G. Harding, and Franklin Roosevelt. Four others were assassinated – Abraham Lincoln, James Garfield, William McKinley, and John F. Kennedy. Today’s post deals with an urban legend about two of those men, Lincoln and Kennedy.
Abraham Lincoln and John Kennedy (Public domain)
I first heard of the “strange coincidences” between the assassinations of Presidents Lincoln and Kennedy way before the internet was around. A newspaper article listed all the similarities between the two events. Recently, I remembered the article, so I decided to check its validity. Turns out some of the things are true.
- Both men were elected to congress in ’46. Lincoln in 1846, Kennedy in 1946.
- Both were elected to the office of president in ’60. Lincoln in 1860, Kennedy in 1960.
- Each man had seven letters in their last name.
- Both were concerned with civil rights. Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. Kennedy was the first to propose what would be the Civil Rights act of 1964.
- Both men married when they were in their thirties and their wives were in their twenties.
- Both were shot on a Friday. Lincoln on April 14, 1865, and Kennedy on November 22, 1963.
- Both men were succeeded in office by Southern democrats named Johnson.
- Their successors were both born in ’08. Andrew Johnson in 1808, and Lyndon Johnson in 1908.
- Both assassins are known by their full names, John Wilkes Booth and Lee Harvey Oswald. (This is not uncommon as the press often uses a full name to distinguish assassins from innocent people with the same name. Another example is John Lennon’s assassin, Mark David Chapman.)
- Speaking of the assassins, the total number of letters in each name is fifteen.
- Neither Booth nor Oswald lived long enough to go to trial. After refusing to surrender, John Wilkes Booth was killed by Sergent Boston Corbett. (There is a conspiracy theory regarding Booth, and I’ll write about that in a future post.) While being transferred to the county jail, nightclub owner Jack Ruby shot and killed Oswald in the basement of the Dallas City Jail.
(Both photos are my own.)
There are some false assumptions/rumors involving the assassinations. While Ford shot Lincoln in a theater and Oswald ran to a theater after shooting Kennedy from a warehouse, the opposite didn’t hold true. Booth didn’t run to a warehouse as it has often been said but was found in a barn. Also, Lincoln’s secretary was named Kennedy, but Kennedy’s secretaries were not named Lincoln.
Nonetheless, there are some interesting comparisons between these two dark times in American history.
You must be logged in to post a comment.