A message from Lincoln’s time
There was a message from the Civil War era hidden inside Lincoln’s pocket watch, so the story went. The tale has been told for 150 years from as far away as Ireland and, now, we know the truth. The message is real:
For nearly 150 years, a story has circulated about a hidden Civil War message engraved inside Abraham Lincoln’s pocket watch. On Tuesday, museum curators confirmed it was true. A watchmaker used tiny tools to carefully pry open the antique watch at the National Museum of American History, and a descendant of the engraver read aloud the message from a metal plate underneath the watch face.
“Jonathan Dillon April 13 – 1861,” part of the inscription reads, “Fort Sumpter (sic) was attacked by the rebels on the above date.” Another part reads, “Thank God we have a government.”
Click on the link for a picture of the watch and the engraving. It’s an interesting insight into one of the ordinary days of Americans from long ago; a snapshot of the concerns of a local watchmaker trying to make sure that something was not forgotten.
It’s a curious location for a secret message, I grant you. How many of you have ever thought of popping the bezel off the back of your watch just to see what’s there? (Assuming your watch even has a bezel. If you even wear a watch.) Well, there are many mysteries in history and it’s always nice to see one resolved.
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