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Portrait of Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln late in the Civil War (LOC)

York CWRT Zoom features speaker on Lincoln conspirator with York ties

Press release: York Civil War Round Table

Happy Spring!  I believe that we have turned the corner on the winter weather and can look forward to the beautiful weather ahead. I hope that you are able to enjoy this weather and also hope that you are able to join us for this month’s program on Wednesday, April 21st at 7:00 pm.  This program is available to view via Facebook Live or Zoom by going the the Civil War Roundtable’s page on the York County History Center’s website:
April is a significant month in Civil War history.  The war began on April 12, 1861, Lee’s army surrendered on April 9, 1865, and sadly 5 days later John Wilkes Booth assassinated Abraham Lincoln at Ford’s Theater in Washington, DC.  This last event will be the focus of this month’s presentation.  Join us this Wednesday, April 21st as we welcome Bob Bowser as he highlights a York County connection to the Lincoln Assassination.  Many know Ned Spangler as a stagehand at Ford’s Theater who held Booth’s horse in the alley outside the theater.  Mr. Bowser will tell us more about Spangler in his presentation:
“A Good Natured Drudge: The Untold Story of Edman ‘Ned’ Spangler”

Referred to by modern historians as “the least well known of the conspirators,” the story of Edman “Ned” Spangler has been neglected in the historical record. Often overshadowed by the larger personalities in the great conspiracy against Lincoln, Spangler makes short cameo appearances in narratives of the assassination story, usually being portrayed as the willing drunk lackey of John Wilkes Booth. “A Good Natured Drudge: the Untold Story of Edman ‘Ned’ Spangler” sets out to correct these misconceptions by analyzing the often ignored story of his life. The talk follows Ned’s tale from his humble beginnings in York, Pennsylvania, through his days in Baltimore, Washington, and Dry Tortugas,  Florida. It culminates with his untimely death in Bryantown, Maryland. Along the way, we will explore  the ongoing controversies over Ned’s arrest and conviction, as well as his attitude toward serving time in p rison. Additionally, we will examine the intricate details and friendships that made up the life of this  complex, yet neglected, character in American history and attempt to answer the question, “Who was  Ned Spangler?”
Bob Bowser is a high school history teacher at Henry E. Lackey High School, located in Charles County,  Maryland. Bob holds a BS in Education and an MA in History. His main areas of research are the American  Civil War and the Lincoln Assassination. For the last 13 years, Bob has been a tour guide at the Dr.  Samuel A. Mudd House Museum. He has been a member of the board of directors of the Dr. Samuel A.  Mudd Society for the last five years and is currently serving as the acting president of the Dr. Samuel A.  Mudd Society.


Scott E. Rosenau