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The Lincoln AssassinationCrime and Punishment, Myth and Memory A Lincoln Forum Book$
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Harold Holzer, Craig L. Symonds, and Frank J. Williams

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780823232260

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: March 2011

DOI: 10.5422/fso/9780823232260.001.0001

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The Lincoln Assassination in Law and Lore

The Lincoln Assassination in Law and Lore

(p.137) Chapter 5 The Lincoln Assassination in Law and Lore
The Lincoln Assassination

Frank J. Williams

Fordham University Press

This chapter explores the nature of the military tribunal that weighed the fate of the conspirators—with a different goal in mind. It illuminates the important questions its work raised (and continues to raise) on the issue of constitutional due process, deficient at many junctures during the conspirators' trial. Strikingly, the questions about such tribunals in Lincoln's day mirror those confronting Americans in the 21st century. The chapter thus serves as backdrop to the use of military tribunals, and the due process to be accorded the accused, in the modern wars on terror. The lessons of yesterday, as always, offer potentially valuable insights into the problems of today.

Keywords:   Abraham Lincoln, military tribunal, conspirators, due process

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