PURSUIT AND CAPTURE OF
BOOTH AND HEROLD.
JOHN M. LLOYD.
For the Prosecution.óMay 13.
I reside at Mrs. Surratt’s tavern, Surrattsville, and am engaged in hotel-keeping and farming. Some five or six weeks before the assassination of the President, John H. Surratt, David E. Herold, and G. A. Atzerodt came to my house. Atzerodt and Surratt drove up to my house in the morning first, and went toward T. B., a post-office about five miles below there. They had not been gone more than half an hour, when they returned with Herold. All three, when they came into the bar-room, drank, I think. John Surratt then called me into the front parlor, and on the sofa were two carbines, with ammunition; also a rope from sixteen to twenty feet in length, and a monkey wrench. Surratt asked me to take care of these things, and to conceal the carbines. I told him there was no place to conceal them, and I did not wish to keep such things. He then took me to a room I had never been in, immediately above the store-room, in the back part of the building. He showed me where I could put them underneath the joists of the second floor of the main building. I put them in there according to his directions.
I stated to Colonel Wells that Surratt put them there, but I carried the arms up and put them in there myself. There was also one cartridge-box of ammunition. Surratt said he just wanted these articles to stay for a few days, and he would call for them. On the Tuesday before the assassination of the President, I was coming to Washington, and I met Mrs. Surratt, on the road, at Uniontown. When she first broached subject to me about the articles at my place, I did not know what she had reference to. Then she came out plainer, and asked me about the “shooting-irons.” I had myself forgotten about them being there. I told her they were hid away far back, and that I was afraid the house might be searched. She told me to get them out ready; that they would be wanted soon. I do not recollect distinctly the first question she put to me. Her language was indistinct, as if she wanted to draw my attention to something, so that no one else would understand. Finally she came out bolder with it, and said they would be wanted soon. I told her that I had an idea of having them buried; that I was very uneasy about having them there.
On the 14th of April I went to Marlboro to attend a trial there; and in the evening, when I got home, which I should judge was about 5 o’clock, I found Mrs. Surratt there. She met me out by the wood-pile as I drove in with some fish and oysters in my buggy. She told me to have those shooting-irons ready that night, there would be some parties who would call for them. She gave me something wrapped in a piece of paper, which I took up stairs, and found to be a field-glass. She told me to get two bottles of whisky ready, and that these things were to be called for that night.
Just about midnight on Friday, Herold came into the house and said, “Lloyd, for God’s sake, make haste and get those things.” I did not make any reply, but went straight and got the carbines, supposing they were the parties Mrs. Surratt had referred to, though she didn’t mention any names. From the way he spoke he must have been apprised that I already knew what I was to give him. Mrs. Surratt told me to give the carbines, whisky, and field-glass. I did not give them the rope and monkey-wrench. Booth didn’t come in. I did not know him; he was a stranger to me. He remained on his horse. Herold, I think, drank some out of the glass before he went out.
I do not think they remained over five minutes. They only took one of the carbines. Booth said he could not take his, because his leg was broken.
Just as they were about leaving, the man who was with Herold said, “I will tell you some news, if you want to hear it,” or something to that effect. I said, “I am not particular; use your own pleasure about telling it.” “Well,” said he, “I am pretty certain that we have assassinated the President and Secretary Seward.” I think that was his language, as well as I can recollect. Whether Herold was present at the time he said that, or whether he was across the street, I am not positive; I was much excited and unnerved at the time.
The moon was shining when the men came. The man whose leg was broken was on a light-colored horse; I supposed it to be a gray horse, in the moonlight. It was a large horse, I suppose some sixteen hands high; the other, ridden by Herold, was a bay, and not so large.
Between 8 and 9 o’clock the next morning the news was received of the assassination of the President, and I think the name of Booth was spoken of as the assassin.
I have heard Atzerodt called by the nickname of “Port Tobacco.” I used to call him “Miserable.” And then I called him, for a long time, “Stranger.” I do not think I had been acquainted with him over two months before the assassination.
[Two carbines, Spencer rifles, were exhibited to the witness.]
The carbines were brought in covers. The cover that is on this one looks like the cover in which it was brought to me. I took the cover off one, and the peculiar kind of breech attracted my attention, never having seen one like it before. They look like the carbines that were brought to my place.
Cross-examined by MR. AIKEN.
I rented Mrs. Surratt’s house at Surrattsville, about the first of December last, and Mrs. Surratt frequently came there after that. When I met Mrs. Surratt on the Tuesday preceding the assassination, I was coming to Washington, and she was going to my place, I supposed. I stopped, and so did she. I then got out and went to her buggy. It had been raining, and was very muddy. I do not know that the word “carbine” was mentioned. She spoke about those shooting-irons. It was a very quick and hasty conversation. I am confident that she named the shooting-irons on both occasions; not so positive about the first as I am about the last; I know she did on the last occasion. On the Friday I do not think Mrs. Surratt was there over ten minutes.
When I first drove up to the wood-yard, Mrs. Surratt came out to where I was. The first thing she said to me was, “Talk about the devil, and his imps will appear,” or something to that effect. I said, “I was not aware that I was a devil before.” “Well,” said she, “Mr. Lloyd, I want you have those shooting-irons ready; there will be parties here to-night who will call for them.” At the same time she gave me something wrapped up in a newspaper, which I did not undo until I got up stairs.
The conversation I had with Mrs. Surratt about the shooting-irons was while I was carrying the fish and oysters into the house. Mrs. Surratt then requested me to fix her buggy for her. The front spring bolts were broken; the spring had become detached from the axle. I tied them with some cord; that was the only fixing I could give them. Mrs. Offutt, my sister-in-law, was, I believe, in the yard; but whether she heard the conversation or not, I do not know.
The first information I gave of this occurrence was to Lieutenant Lovett and Captain Cottingham, some time about the middle of the week; but I did not detail all the circumstances. I told these officers that it was through the Surratts that I had got myself into the difficulty. If they had never brought me on there, I never would have got myself into difficulty or words to that effect; and I gave full information of the particulars to Colonel Wells, on the Saturday week following.
When Booth and Herold left my house, they took the road toward T. B. Herold came up toward the stable between me and the other man, who was on the light-colored horse, an they rode off at a pretty rapid gait. When Herold brought back the bottle from which Booth had drank the whisky, he remarked to me, “I owe you a couple of dollars;” and said he, “Here.” With that he offered me a note, which next morning I found to be one dollar, which just about paid for the bottle of liquor they had just pretty nearly drank.
I think I told Mrs. Offutt, after Mrs. Surratt went away, that it was a field-glass she had brought. She did not tell me that Mrs. Surratt gave her a package.
By MR. DOSTER.
I did not know his name to be Atzerodt until, I suppose, two or three weeks at the farthest.
By MR. STONE.
Booth did not take a carbine with him. I only brought one carbine down; Booth said he could not carry his; I had the carbine then in my bed-chamber. It was no great while after Mrs. Surratt left, when, according to her orders, I got them from the store-room and carried them to my bed-room to have them ready. I brought the carbine and gave it to Herold before they said they had killed the President; they never told me that until they were about riding off. I was right smart in liquor that afternoon, and after night I got more so. I went to bed between 8 and 9 o’clock, and slept very soundly until 12 o’clock. I woke up just as the clock struck 2. A good many soldiers came there on Saturday, and on Saturday night others came and searched the place. When they asked if I had seen two men pass that way in the morning, I told them I had not. That is the only thing I blame myself about. If I had given the information they asked of me, I should have been perfectly easy regarding it. This is the only thing I am sorry I did not do.
Recalled for the Prosecution.óMay 15.
Cross-examined by MR. AIKEN.
When the party brought the carbines to my house, Mr. Surratt assisted me in carrying them up stairs, together with the cartridge boxes, and they were immediately concealed between the joists and ceiling of an unfinished room, where they remained until that Friday when Mrs. Surratt gave me information that they would be wanted that night. I then took them out, according to her direction, and put them in my bed-room, so as to have them convenient for any parties that might call that night. I was out by the wood-pile when Mrs. Surratt handed the package to me. I prepared two bottles of whisky, according to herdirections.