Browsing articles tagged with "Grant Hall Archives - Historic Fort Lesley J. McNair"
Nov
7

Grant Hall Open House 07 NOV 2015

By John Michael  //  Fort Lesley J McNair  //  No Comments

Historic Fort Lesley J. McNair

Fort Lesley J. McNair - Main Gate

Fort Lesley J. McNair – Main Gate

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grant Hall – Where The Trial Took Place

Nearly 500 people braved the chilly rainy weather and ventured out to Fort Lesley J. McNair to learn more about the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators from some noted historians.   It was Open House at Building #20 – also known as Grant Hall – one of the remaining buildings from the Federal Penitentiary that once stood on the acres of this historic US Army Post…

Established in 1791 when Major Charles Pierre L’Enfant designed and laid out the new Capital City. it had become by the time the trial was held – Washington Arsenal with the first Federal Penitentiary occupying the northern part of the peninsula known once as Greenleaf Point.

Grant Hall –  Third Floor

Slightly modified over time,  it’ s the only remaining part of the penitentiary – it was originally the deputy warden’s quarters when it was attached to the main cell block of the penitentiary.

Grant Hall - Bldg #20

Grant Hall – Bldg #20

Noted Historians Provide the Details

In 1865, a military commission was established to determine the fate of the assassination conspirators.  After several weeks and hundreds of witnesses, the determination of the fate of the prisoners was made –  four of the conspirators would head to the gallows – among them was Mary Surratt – the first woman to be hanged by the Federal Government.

the courtroom where the trial was held

the courtroom where the trial was held

FUTURE OPEN HOUSE OPPORTUNITIES

FUTURE OPEN HOUSE SCHEDULE
Grant Hall Public Open Houses are held quarterly on the first Saturday of the second month of each quarter. During a calendar year, those months are February, May, August and November. The dates in 2016 for Grant Hall Public Open Houses are: Feb 6 (weather depending — will close for snow, so check JBM-HH Facebook), May 7, Aug 6 and Nov 5. Open House hours are 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. For more information please contact the public affairs office on Fort Myer

 

OVER 200 HISTORICAL IMAGES, MAPS & ILLUSTRATIONS

The book, Images of America – Fort Lesley J. McNair contains over two hundred historical photographs, images and illustrations which chronicle the two hundred plus years of history among the acres of this US Army Post.

The book “Images of America – Fort Lesley J McNair”  is “a walk down memory lane” as one reader called it after he turned the last page.  Go beyond the website and read more of the history with your own copy – BUY THE BOOK offers the opportunity to get either a personalized & autographed copy from the author or purchase the book from one of the major resellers.

Images of America - Fort Lesley J. McNair

Images of America – Fort Lesley J. McNair

Jul
7

The Lincoln Conspirators Hanged

First Woman Hanged by the Federal Government

The Lincoln Conspirators Hanged…

After weeks of listening to testimony of hundreds of “witnesses” the military commission’s came to a consensus and the orders were carried out. On July 7, 1865, four conspirators – Lewis Powell, David Herold, George Atzerodt, and Mary Surratt – were hanged by the neck at Federal Penitentiary at Washington Arsenal in Washington D.C.  The remaining conspirators: Dr. Samuel Mudd, Samuel Arnold, Michael O’Laughlen, and Edmund Spangler received other sentences or were later freed when President Andrew Johnson pardoned them.  John Surratt, the son of Mary Surratt who had become a fugitive and first went to Canada then to Europe then Africa was later captured and tried, but got set free on a technicality.

 

 

Lincoln Conspirators

Mary Surratt

Mary Surratt

George Atzerodt

George Atzerodt

David Herold

David Herold

Lewis Powell

Lewis Powell

Gallows Constructed in the Courtyard

While the trial was being held preparations were made for the outcome with gallows built in the courtyard of the penitentiary to carry out the sentence of the military commission. The actual assassin, John Wilkes Booth, already dead was buried temporarily within the penitentiary grounds.

 

 

 

 

Conspirators on Scaffold

Conspirators on Scaffold

The Lincoln conspirators hanged at the gallows…

hanged to death

hanged to death

 

Their bodies were then placed in coffins and buried temporarily in shallow graves near the gallows.  Within days the gallows were removed and later the entire penitentiary was also  dismantled save for one part of the building that stands until today,  Grant Hall, where the trial took place. After the rest of the buildings came down,  the bricks were then used for the walls that now surround Fort Lesley J. McNair.

 

coffns and graves

\coffins and graves

 

OVER 200 HISTORICAL IMAGES, MAPS & ILLUSTRATIONS

The book, Images of America – Fort Lesley J. McNair contains over two hundred historical photographs, images and illustrations which chronicle the two hundred plus years of history among the acres of this US Army Post.

The book “Images of America – Fort Lesley J McNair”  is “a walk down memory lane” as one reader called it after he turned the last page.  Go beyond

Images of America - Fort Lesley J. McNair

Images of America – Fort Lesley J. McNair

the website and read more of the history with your own copy – BUY THE BOOK offers the opportunity to get either a personalized & autographed copy from the author or purchase the book from one of the major resellers.

JOHN MICHAEL CREATIVES    —   JOIN OUR MAILING LIST

Apr
4

A 1972 Tour of Fort Lesley J McNair – Part II

By John Michael  //  Fort Lesley J McNair  //  No Comments

PART II

SELECT PHOTOGRAPHS FROM 1972 DISCOVERED

This short tour of Fort Lesley J McNair provides only a small glimpse of what many call “A most beautiful US Army Post”

Roosevelt Hall  – a design by the architectural firm of McKim, Mead and White – first contained the Army War College.  The first graduating class that did their work within this beautiful building was the Class of 1909-10.  It stands as a tribute to them and those who followed.   After World War II,  the Army War College moved to Carlisle Barracks in Pennsylvania (taking their statue of Frederick the Great there too!).  The National War College now is located in Roosevelt Hall providing instruction to members of all branches of the military and other US government agencies such as the Department of State.   One graduate from more recent times is Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens,

 

Roosevelt Hall from the Northwest

Roosevelt Hall from the Northwest

“TEMPOS” – temporary buildings, built / erected to meet a pressing need and among those needs were the need for additional quarters – there’s never enough space for housing.   These barracks, which were located on the east side of post, down the road  a bit from Roosevelt Hall, provided much needed housing.

"Tempo" - Temporary Barracks on the East side

“Tempo” – Temporary Barracks on the East side

What is in present day called Grant Hall, was in 1972, housing for married military officers.  The building is the last remnant of the federal penitentiary that once occupied many more of the acres – it was built before the US Civil War.  The notoriety of the penitentiary is that’s where the Lincoln assassination conspirators were incarcerated.  Their trial took place on the third floor of this building seen below.  The gallows where they were later hanged on 07 JUL 1865 were erected just to what would be the left side of the building.   Tennis courts now occupy the space where the gallows stood.

Site of the Lincoln Assassination Conspirators Trial The Federal Penitentiary Building - later Grant Hall

Site of the Lincoln Assassination Conspirators Trial – The Federal Penitentiary Building – later Grant Hall

 

The US Army has its share of talented people.  The branch that is one of the work horses of the US Army is the Corps of Engineers.  The Engineering School once occupied the barracks shown below.  It also is where the US Army Music School later trained the musicians for all the US Army regimental bands.

 

Inter American Defense College

Inter American Defense College

 

There are two other sets of photographs from this group which can be seen –  PART I   and PART III.

OVER 200 HISTORICAL IMAGES, MAPS & ILLUSTRATIONS

The book, Images of America – Fort Lesley J. McNair contains over two hundred historical photographs, images and illustrations which chronicle the two hundred plus years of history among the acres of this US Army Post.

The book “Images of America – Fort Lesley J McNair”  is “a walk down memory lane” as one reader called it after he turned the last page.  Go beyond

Images of America - Fort Lesley J. McNair

Images of America – Fort Lesley J. McNair

the website and read more of the history with your own copy – BUY THE BOOK offers the opportunity to get either a personalized & autographed copy from the author or purchase the book from one of the major resellers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

JOHN MICHAEL CREATIVES    —   JOIN OUR MAILING LIST

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