Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Better late than never

In 1861, watchmaker Jonathan Dillon inscribed a secret message into Abraham Lincoln's pocket watch.

In 1906, Dillon told the New York Times that the inscription said "The first gun is fired. Slavery is dead. Thank God we have a President who at least will try."

This week, the Smithsonian cracked open the watch, and found that the watch is actually inscribed: "Jonathan Dillon April 13- 1861 Fort Sumpter was attacked by the rebels on the above date J Dillon. April 13- 1861 Washington thank God we have a government Jonth Dillon."

The Times published a correction to the 1906 article today. That will teach them to trust some guy a hundred years ago.

Here is the Times article about the watch.

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