Shattered Legacy: The Unforgettable Stories of U.S. Presidents Who Paid the Ultimate Price

Shattered Legacy: The Unforgettable Stories of U.S. Presidents Who Paid the Ultimate Price

Unfortunately, the history of the USA has not always been all sugar, spice, and everything nice. A number of four of the country’s presidents got killed, and the murderers paid the price for their awful deeds. Those assassins had various reasons for what they did, and some of them are still the subject of debate.

There have been a total number of 46 presidencies in the history of the US, including Joe Biden, whose term began in 2021. Hopefully, no tragic event such as the assassination of the president will ever happen again in the US. However, it’s time to dive a bit into the sad American history:

Abraham Lincoln (1865):

Abraham Lincoln served as the 16th President of the US between 1861 and 1865. In the last year of his presidency, he was assassinated by John Wilkes Booth while attending a play at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, DC. Lincoln got shot and died the following day as a result of his wounds.

Lincoln’s assassin was an actor and Confederate sympathizer. Being a fervent supporter of the Confederacy, which opposed the policies of Abraham Lincoln, especially about the Civil War and the abolition of slavery, Booth reckoned that killing the US President of that time would help the Confederate cause.

The Union forces pursued Booth and found him in a barn in Virginia. While he refused to surrender, he got shot by Sergeant Boston Corbett less than two weeks after the assassination of Lincoln. Booth died as a result of his injuries.

James Garfield (1881):

James Garfield served as the 20th President of the US, and he got shot by Charles J. Guiteau at the Baltimore and Potomac Railroad Station from Washington, DC, on July 2, 1881. Two months later, Garfield died as a result of his wounds.

Charles Guiteau, the assassin of Garfield, was a mentally unstable person who also had a history of failed business ventures and political aspirations. Guiteau’s reasons for killing Garfield consisted of his disappointment of not receiving a political appointment after contributing to the election campaign of Garfield. The assassin believed that the murder of Garfield would lead to a political realignment and benefit the Republican Party.

After his awful deed, Guiteau was rapidly apprehended by the authorities and sentenced to death. During the trial, the man claimed that he was divinely inspired and that his actions were for the good of the country.

In less than a year after killing US President James Garfield, Guiteau was executed by hanging.

William McKinley (1901):

William McKinley was the 25th President of the United States, and he was assassinated through a gunshot by Leon Czolgosz, an anarchist, on September 6, 1901, during a public event held in Buffalo, New York. McKinley died a few days later from gangrene caused by the gunshot wounds.

Czogosz was influenced by anarchist ideologies and manifested disillusionment with the government and capitalism. He believed that he could inspire others to join a revolution by assassinating the US President of that time.

Shortly after his deed, Czogosz was captured by the authorities and found guilty after the trial. He was sentenced to death by the electric chair on October 29, 1901.

John F. Kennedy (1963):

John F. Kennedy served as the 35th President of the US, and he was assassinated on November 22, 1963, by being shot while he was riding in a motorcade through Dealey Plaza.

The assassin of John F. Kennedy was Lee Harvey Oswald, who was a former Marine with Marxist and pro-Soviet sympathies. It’s hard to tell what motives Oswald had for his terrible action, as those still represent the subject of ongoing debate and speculation. Some voices claim that the assassin was influenced by political ideologies.

On the same day of President Kennedy’s assassination, Oswald was arrested. Before he could face trial, he got shot and killed by Jack Ruby on November 24, 1963, while being in police custody.

The assassinations of the four US Presidents mentioned above led to changes in the security measures for US Presidents with the purpose of preventing similar incidents from happening in the future.

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