Mrs. Widow Lincoln:
The First Years
They carried Lincoln to the Petersen house, a private home across the street from Ford's, careful, though it made no difference, to steady his body and what remained of his brain. Mary Lincoln followed, helped by Clara Harris, who a few minutes before had been laughing along with her hostess at the foolishness of Our American Cousin. Both women's dresses were stained with blood that Mary Lincoln insisted was her husband's. In fact, it was from the flesh wound that Major Rathbone sustained when he rose to seize the President's assailant, only to be slashed by Booth's sword. In the darkness outside the theater, the Lincolns had been separated, and Mary Lincoln began screaming, "Where is my husband? Why didn't he kill me? Why was I not the one?" Once in the Petersen house she clambered up the stairs and down the hall to the back bedroom, where she tried to revive him. "How can it be so? Do speak to me," she implored, and then began kissing Lincoln until someone dragged her back to the front parlor.
There, in a prim sitting room furnished with horse-