The Plot to kill Abraham Lincoln

by R. Michael Mershon

This is not 1865, nor is the plotter John Wilkes Booth. The year is 1861, and there is a
plot to kill the President-Elect on his way to Washington D.C. As was the case in those times,
railroads had competing lines and station points, even in the same cities. Most notable in this
case was the city of Baltimore, Maryland. In the case of Lincoln’s trip to Washington, he had to
leave one train, travel several blocks, and enter another train to complete the trip.

In Baltimore, there were several anti-Northern militias. Their plan was to kill Lincoln as
he transferred from one train to another. The schedule was well-known, as it was published in
all the papers. The plan was to create a disturbance in another part of town, thus drawing the
attention of the police away from the President-Elect’s movements, making it easier for the
other militias to move in and kill Lincoln.

As it turned out, Northern spies had infiltrated the “sesesh” militias, and knew of their
plans. The plans were altered, with the help of the presidents of the railroads, to make the train
switch in the middle of the night. This meant that, by the time the militias were to assemble
and carry out their plot, the train with the President-Elect would already be on its way from
Baltimore to Washington.

To foil the plot, Kate Warne would enter the train with Lincoln posing as her invalid
brother, along with two men to assure the trip would go according to plan. The two men were
Ward Hill Lamon and Allan Pinkerton, founder of the Pinkerton National Detective Agency, the
person who had planned the entire diversion. Kate Warne was the first woman detective hired
by Pinkerton and later became an instructor for detectives in the company.

The plan was not discovered, and the plotters were arrested, except for the “brains” of
the plot, a man by the name of Cypriano Ferrandini. This person had an office in the basement
of Barnum’s Hotel in Baltimore. He was the barber in the hotel. Having failed in the plot, he
continued his barber shop, always advertising for assistants (only whites). He died in
December, 1910. Had this plot succeeded, the entire history of the nation would have been
very different.

2020-2021 Officers Installed

L-R: Jim Crane, Department of Ohio Commander Michael Spaulding, Kerry Langdon, Michael Mershon, Jim Houston, Richard Davis, Harry Schmidt, Phillip Kidd, Liam Kidd, Camp Commander Robert Kidd, Dan Davis, Kenny Burck, David Stockdale, Larry Collins, Larry McCullough, Don Vogel and Denny Brown. 

Commander – Robert J. Kidd Sr.

ViceCommander – Donald C. Vogel Jr.

ViceCommander – Harry W. Schmidt

Secretary – David Stockdale

Treasurer – Jim Houston, PDC

Camp Council 2018-2020:

Richard A. Davis, PCC 2019-2021

Todd Mayer, PCC 2020-2022

Kerry L. Langdon,PDC

Nominating Committee 2019-2021:

D. Scott Freeman 2019-2021

Dennis M. Brown, PCC 2020-2022

James T. Crane, PDC


Assistant Secretary – Gordon Stokely

Guard/Guide – Daniel Y. Davis

Treasurer – Richard A. Davis, PCC

Historian – Larry W. Collins. PCC

Newsletter Editor – Larry W. Collins, PCC

Assistant Newsletter Editor – Jack Bredenfoerder

Bugler – Peter J. Sturdevant

Memorials Officer – [vacant]

Chaplain – Larry McCullough

Patriotic Instructor – D. Scott Freeman

Color Bearer – [vacant]

Photographer – Denny Brown, PCC

Counselor – David L. Stockdale

Quartermaster – William West III, PCC

Eagle Scout Coordinator – Jim H. Houston, PDC

Recruiting Officer – [vacant]

Fraternal Relations Officer – Kerry L. Langdon, PDC

ROTC Coordinator – Steve Murray

Graves Registration Officer – J. Roger Poppel

Signals Officer – [vacant] 

Memorial Day 2019: A Day of Remembrance

For Immediate Release:
May 17, 2019

2018.05.28 SUV Memorial Day, Spring Grove Cemetery, Cincinnati 030

Memorial Day: Let Us Never Forget

(Cincinnati, OH) –  On Memorial Day, Monday, May 27, The Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War (SUVCW), the 6 TH Ohio Volunteer Infantry and the Sister Anthony O’Connell Auxiliary to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War (ASUVCW), will present their annual Memorial Day commemoration service in the Civil War section at the beautiful, historic Spring Grove Cemetery. This year’s special guest speaker will be LtCol Kirk Griener, USMC.

As people across the country enjoy picnics, visit the beach, spend time with family, and enjoy the long weekend that represents the start of the summer season. The SUVCW, 6th OVI, and ASUVCW would like to remind Americans that there is a far more significant meaning to Memorial Day that should not be forgotten. Memorial Day is a time to publicly show our respect for those who have lost their lives in defense of our country and to keep alive the memory of their sacrifices.

Each year on Memorial Day weekend, Spring Grove cemetery pays tribute to all of the veterans interred at Spring Grove with 5 days of activities. The Memorial Day commemoration ceremony will begin at 11:00 AM on Monday the 27th and will feature:

  • Color guard
  • Gun salute
  • Presentation of wreaths
  • Talk by LtCol Kirk Griener, USMC
  • Taps
  • Historic Scattering of Rose Pedals on graves

LtCol Greiner’s personal decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medal with “V”, the Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal, and the Combat Action Ribbon.

Following the ceremony, Steve Ball, Civil War musician will perform authentic Civil War music. At. 12:30, President Abraham Lincoln will give a few remarks. A Tour of the cemetery will begin at 1:15.

Todd Mayer
Camp Commander, Gen William H. Lytle Camp, SUVCW

Additional biographical information available

2017.05.29 SUV Memorial Day, Spring Grove 1142018.05.28 SUV Memorial Day, Spring Grove Cemetery, Cincinnati 004

Lytle Camp presents SUVCW JROTC Award at Scarlet Oaks

In the photo from left to right: Brother Jim Cobb, Cadet David Goad, Brother Jim Houston

Brothers Jim Cobb and Jim Houston presented the SUVCW JROTC Award to Cadet David Goad at the Scarlet Oaks Awards Banquet on Wednesday, 2 May. Cadet Goad is a junior at Scarlet Oaks and is Naval Science 1 drill commander. He is involved in the rifle team and participates in the color guard. Upon completion of the NJROTC program next year he plans to join the U.S. Navy.

Miami University ROTC Awards Presented by General William H Lytle Camp #10

By Denny Brown

On Saturday 21 April 2018 at Miami University, I had the high honor and privilege to present two certificates to Midshipman Paul Kenney and Cadet Brian Park.

Paul has been studying mechanical engineering with a minor in Russian. He expects to be stationed at the Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida upon graduation. He is a native of the Chesapeake Bay area in Maryland.

Brian has majored in political science and will enter an intelligence program at Goodfellow Air Force Base, San Angelo, Texas. He is from Columbus.

Both said they have never really traveled much in the south. I said, “your time will come”. I think our country is in good hands with these fine young men!



By Brother Jim Houston

At the invitation of Eagle Scout candidate, Will Scheffter, Camp members attended the Eagle Scout Court of Honor held on Saturday, November 25 at St. Louis Catholic Church in Owensville, OH. The Camp was represented by Jim Crane, Denny Brown, Larry Collins, Jim Houston, Mike Mershon (and wife). At this time Will and Ryan Nickolette were awarded the Eagle Scout rank.

On behalf of the Camp, Jim Houston presented a Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War Certificate of Commendation during the ceremony. A Certificate was also provided to Ryan at a later date.

Will’s Eagle Scout project involved constructing a memorial Civil War cannon placed at St. Louis Catholic Cemetery along with a memorial tablet listing Union Civil War veterans buried in the Cemetery. The Lytle Camp assisted Will in documenting listings of the veterans for the tablet and provided partial funding of the project through the SUVCW Memorial Fund and the SUVCW Charitable Foundation. A dedication ceremony was held at the Cemetery on December 4, 2016.

Local Camp of Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War Returns to Memorial Hall


Top L to R: Jim Houston, Kerry Langdon, David Stockdale, William West, Larry Collins, Woody Cook, Robert Kidd. Middle L to R: Michael Mershon; Thomas Reckner, Peter Sturdevant, Phillip Kidd, Richard Davis Bottom L to R: Ralph Kidd, Todd Mayer, James Crane, Denny Brown

On Saturday, November 11th, Veterans Day, Lytle Camp 10, Department of Ohio, Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, became the first fraternal Civil War organization to hold an official ceremony in over 60 years at the Historic Hamilton County Memorial Hall in downtown Cincinnati. Over 30 members and guests attended the Camp installation of the 2018 Officers, as Commander Larry Collins relinquished command of the Camp to Commander Colonel (R) Todd Mayer. Commander Mayer was sworn in to his post using a bible that has been in passed down through the generations since 1880s. Awards were given out to Camp members for their contributions to the Camp throughout the 2017 campaign. Additionally Commander Collins and National Auxiliary leader Wanda Langdon received gifts of appreciation for all of their contributions to the Camp. Commander Collins last act as Commander, was to recognize the contributions of Camp co-founder Jim “Tex” Houston. Brother Houston was awarded a life time achievement plaque for all he has done for the Camp over the years. The plaque has an image of General Lytle, and an image of our membership badge.

After the ceremony, and the meeting was closed, members went upstairs to listen to the Guest speaker, our very own Brother Richard Davis. He delivered an outstanding talk on the GAR, GAR history in Cincinnati and Memorial Hall. This was followed by Brothers Woody Cook and Todd Mayer displaying their military memorabilia, and engaging the public about veterans.

Memorial Hall  is located at Elm & Grant Streets, in Cincinnati, Ohio. The building is next to Cincinnati’s Music Hall and across from Washington Park in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood. It was built by the Grand Army of the Republic and Hamilton County in 1908, as a memorial to the military of the city and county. The building was built in the Beaux-Arts style.

Constructed according to a design by Samuel Hannaford and Sons, the Memorial Building was intended to commemorate members of all branches of the U.S. armed services. The hall contains a 556-seat theater that was designed for speaking, but is also used as a venue for concerts, film screenings and theatrical events.

In late 1978, the Memorial Building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places, qualifying for inclusion both because of its architecture and because of its place in the area’s history. Its location on Washington Park places it in the historic district that embraces most of Over-the-Rhine, which was added to the Register five years after the Memorial Building was individually added.

After its construction in 1908, the Hall was used for Grand Army of the Republic Post meetings, including the WH Lytle Post 47. Additionally veterans reunions were held here, including the  9th Ohio Volunteer Infantry and 4th Ohio Volunteer Cavalry to name a few.

Camp members were thrilled with the event on Saturday, and humbled to be part of an historical event.