Although the front page of “The New York Times ” of Nov. 23, 1864 contains various reports on the Civil War as would be expected, the most intriguing item in this newspaper is an inconspicuous advertisement for a theatrical performance at the Winter Garden theater on page 7.
A one night performance was set for November 25 to benefit the Shakespeare Statue Fund. The performance featured the three Booth brothers, well known in the theatrical community: Junius, Edwin, and John Wilkes. This was the only time that the Booth brothers would appear on stage together.
Of course little did anyone know that less than five months later John Wilkes Booth would become one the more infamous names in American history with his assassination of Abraham Lincoln at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, D.C.
It is always fascinating to find mentions of notables in American history before they would become famous—or infamous.