Why John Wilkes Booth Initially Planned To Kidnap Abraham Lincoln

There are events throughout history that were the culmination of careful planning. People planned for nearly every contingency and then prepared for them. Those plans were then carried out, and the results can be found in the history textbooks. Even though one might think that they have thought of everything, sometimes a random thing happens to change the original plan. 

The story of John Wilkes Booth's assassination of President Abraham Lincoln is a well-known one, per Britannica. People know about Booth shooting the leader of the country and then slashing Major Henry Rathbone, who was a guest of the president, as he tried to escape. Booth also supposedly broke his leg as he jumped from the president's box at the theater, according to his own diary. It was a moment that shocked much of a nation. This was not something that happened out of the blue. The future assassin of President Lincoln had made his feelings known to him in the past. He didn't originally plan to kill the president. Booth had only intended to kidnap him, according to History, but a random thing changed that — for the worse for President Lincoln.  

Fate changed John Wilkes Booth's plans

John Wilkes Booth first met Abraham Lincoln in 1863. Booth was performing at Ford's Theater. The actor glared at President Lincoln and even threatened and pointed his finger in his face. If that happened in modern times, the Secret Service would have paid Booth a visit, but they did not start protecting the president until Theodore Roosevelt's administration decades later. So there was not that layer of protection and there was nothing stopping Booth from carrying out his plan two years later. 

Booth originally wanted to kidnap the president on March 20, 1865, as he was riding a carriage to a show at a hospital that was supposed to help wounded soldiers. There was a change and President Lincoln didn't go, via History. So that made Booth mad, and General Robert E. Lee's surrender turned his rage into a murderous one. Then he decided to murder the president as part of a plan that would include other people killing Vice President Andrew Johnson, Ulysses S. Grant, and Secretary of State William Seward. Grant was supposed to be a guest with the president at the theater, but he withdrew due to his wife not wanting to be in the same place as Mary Todd Lincoln, due to her supposedly insulting her. So Grant was not a target. Another conspirator attacked Seward, but he survived, according to CBS News

Who knows what would have happened if Booth's original plan had worked? Would we have seen more of President Lincoln? It's strange how certain twists can give us the history that we have today.