On July 2, 1881, the newly inaugurated 20th president of the United States, James A. Garfield (1831-1881), was mortally wounded by a gunman as he prepared to board a train in Washington, D.C. He died 79 days later, on Sept. 19, from infections resulting from the horrifically incompetent treatment of his wounds.
With his assassination, America was robbed of a potentially top-notch president. Garfield was the embodiment of the American ideal: a poor Ohio farm boy who had scrambled to obtain an education and to make his way in Republican politics. He was a family man, a pillar of his church and a major general of a volunteer army during the Civil War. He was a high-quality self-made man and the diametrical opposite of the evil made men we rail on at Winter Watch.
Garfield was also chairman of the House Committee on Appropriations and an expert on fiscal matters. As such, he was quite aware of how the plutocratic big capital game was played.
In his inaugural address, Garfield spelled it out in spades:
“Whoever controls the volume of money in our country is absolute master of all industry and commerce and when you realize that the entire system is very easily controlled, one way or another, by a few powerful men at the top, you will not have to be told how periods of inflation and depression originate.”
Garfield was planning to issue more greenbacks, like U.S. President Abraham Lincoln did to finance the Civil War. The banksters are quite hostile to credit-based fiat money directly released into circulation by the federal government. Such money does not come with debt-strings attached and helps people escape the chains of debt slavery. In the bankster system deficit spending is financed by Treasury Bonds.
Garfield’s faction, smeared by the name “Half Breeds,” favored a meritocracy and sought civil service reform. Garfield had tightened federal control over the New York Custom House. New York Sen. Roscue Conkling (R) had used this bureaucracy for patronage and graft. Conkling’s “Stalwarts” favored a machine-run, crony-politics system. Stalwarts were a group of interconnected bankers and insiders (1880 version of the Crime Syndicate) who wished to keep power in Washington
As with JFK’s assassination, there were several groups and useful idiots to draw into a plot. The U.S. was highly infected, as it is now, with religious cults and their flying monkeys. Garfield directly addressed Mormonism during his inauguration. Mormons had been fiercely independent and conspiratorial throughout the 19th century. Garfield stated:
The Mormon Church not only offends the moral sense of manhood by sanctioning polygamy, but prevents the administration of justice through ordinary instrumentalities of law. In my judgment, it is the duty of Congress to prohibit within its jurisdiction all criminal practices, especially of that class which destroy the family relations and endanger social order.” — James A. Garfield, Inaugural Address, March 4, 1881, Washington D.C.
Enter the Assassin
Edward Charles Spitzka profiled Garfield’s assassin, Charles Julius Guiteau (1841-1882), in Guiteau’s trial. He described the perfect controlled-assassin candidate then and now:
“Guiteau had lived an immoral life. But in Spitzka’s view, Guiteau suffered from a mental condition that prevented him from understanding morality in the first place. He called this moral insanity — something we might regard today as sociopathy — which he described as ‘a person who is born with so defective a nervous organization that he is altogether deprived of that moral sense.’”
John Gray, the superintendent of the Utica State Hospital and the chief medical witness for the prosecution, also offered insights into a man who was both depraved and harbored illusions of grandeur:
“I see nothing but a life of moral degradation, moral obliquity, profound selfishness, and disregard for the rights of others,” Gray said at trial. “I see no evidence of insanity but simply a life swayed by his own passions.”
Thus, like many other controlled assassins, comes the crazy lone-wolf theory. Did they ever pause to ponder theories that insiders could have killed Garfield to protect their own interests?
Par for the course, the Stalwart newspaper The New York Times immediately ran cover against any conspiracy. On July 5, just three days after Garfield was shot, NYT declared “no possible conspiracy.” That was quick. Nothing to see here, move along.
Guiteau —he pronounced the name “gittow” — came straight out of the cult world. His mother had died when he was 7, and young Charles was raised by an abusive and erratic father. Profoundly religious, his father became a convert to the Utopian communalism of John H. Noyés. Young Guiteau was very much impressed with the dark-bearded Noyés, who often called on Charles’s father to exchange religious revelations. Eventually, when Guiteau left home, he joined the Utopian religious sect the Oneida Community in Oneida, New York. Like the Mormons, this cult practiced polyamorous relations, at least among the leadership.
Guiteau demonstrated his lifelong pattern of being a complete authoritarian follower. But this devotion was punctuated later with hostility. “I have perfect, entire and absolute confidence in him [Noyés] in all things,” Guiteau wrote of his guru, before fleeing (twice) and threatening Noyés with blackmail.
Shades of Satanism — Not to be Taken Lightly
By 1875, Guiteau’s father thought his son had been possessed by Satan. His sister’s physician had declared him insane after he threatened her with an ax. Even Noyés —a man who practiced a life of free-love polyamorism and preached that Jesus had returned to Earth in the year 70 A.D. — later wrote prosecutors that “Guiteau’s insanity had always consisted of vicious and irresponsible habits.”
Regardless, Guiteau showed ample “confidence.” He first attempted to launch a religious newspaper, called the New York Theocrat, but this failed and Guiteau was obliged to return to Oneida for a time. He left for good in November 1866 after a quarrel with Noyés over compensation that Charles felt was due him.
In Chicago, while clerking with a law firm, he married an attractive 16 year old girl named Annie Bunn, who would testify that she had been much impressed with her husband’s piety. She soon began to have second thoughts, however. Guiteau had no money with which to indulge his expensive tastes, and their life together was one long round of sneaking out of the best hotels, being evicted from comfortable boardinghouses and cheating merchants.
As a satanic type who made his presence known, Guiteau had to have attracted the attention of Crime Syndicate boyz looking for effective minions and flying monkeys. Thus, he entered Republican politics as a Grant supporter. Chester A. Arthur — a compromise choice for vice president on the Garfield ticket — was a member of the Stalwarts.
The story line about Guiteau was quite inconsistent. He was considered a nut and an unwanted intruder when he hung around governmental quarters, nagging to see the president. But in a written deposition to the court, Vice President Arthur admitted that he had met Guiteau “10, possibly as many as 20 times,” mostly in New York City. Party officials “caved” and allowed him to deliver one incoherent speech to a small group of black voters in New York City. Isn’t that somethin’.
He was also allowed to be a hanger-on at HQ, where we suggest nefarious elements/agents had the opportunity to groom, coax and prep this unbalanced individual into the assassination. This is an intelligence provocateur method used frequently in the modern era and most certainly in the case of Lee Harvey Oswald and Jack Ruby. See: [Newly Released JFK Files Place Jack Ruby Near the Texas Book Depository Building]
A pretense and backstory was concocted that Guiteau shot Garfield because he didn’t get a plum governmental appointment for his support.
The Death of James Garfield: What Guiteau Couldn’t Finish, Doctors Did
Guiteau declared, “The President’s tragic death was a sad necessity, but it will unite the Republican party and save the Republic.”
At 9 o’clock, Guiteau, like the president, took a carriage for the Baltimore & Potomac depot, where Garfield planned to board a train for New England. Half an hour later, Guiteau fired two shots, one of which struck Garfield squarely in the back.
Guiteau shouted, “This is the hour of your doom!”
The assassin told police, “I am a Stalwart and Arthur is president of the United States now.”
At trial, Guiteau elaborated, “I went off of the inspiration of the Deity. I never would have shot the president on my own personal account.”
The book “The Trial of the Assassin Guiteau” describes his alleged state:
He had no source of income, no lecturing, no books to sell, no bills to collect; he had no family; he never had any friends. His clothes, shabby enough when he reached Washington, were deteriorating. Even in March, with snow on the ground, he went about without boots or an overcoat. By June, his worn sleeves were pulled down over his hands and his coat buttoned up to his neck, for he had no collar and possibly lacked a shirt as well.
According to a Smithsonian article charting Garfield’s long, agonizingly painful demise, most modern physicians familiar with the case state that Garfield would have easily recovered from his wounds with sterile medical care. This is very similair to the botched medical care of William McKinley. [See “The Assassination of President McKinley: More Hidden History of the Usual Suspects“]
The president was taken to the White House. Over the next 24 hours, more than 15 doctors stuffed their unwashed fingers into his intestinal wound, trying to locate Guiteau’s bullet and ultimately causing sepsis. They repeatedly injected him with morphine, causing the president to vomit; they next tried champagne, which only made him sicker. Joseph Lister, a British surgeon and pioneer of antiseptic surgery, had been advocating since Lincoln’s death for more sterile procedures and environments, but American doctors ridiculed him. “In order to successfully practice Mr. Lister’s Antiseptic Method,” one doctor scoffed in 1878, “it is necessary that we should believe, or act as if we believed, the atmosphere to be loaded with germs.”
As the weeks passed, Garfield’s body became engorged with pus. His face began to swell and had to be drained. Initial meals of steak, eggs and brandy were soon replaced by eggs, bouillon, milk, whiskey and opium. He lost nearly 100 pounds as his doctor’s starved him. Doctors inserted drainage tubes and continued to probe for the bullet; at one point, they brought in Alexander Graham Bell, who had invented a metal detector and thought he might be able to locate the slug by passing it over the president’s abdomen. All was for naught.
Nine days before his execution, Guiteau composed a lengthy poem asserting that God had commanded him to kill Garfield. Guiteau also claimed in the poem that Vice President Arthur knew the assassination had saved the United States, and that Arthur’s refusal to pardon him was the “basest ingratitude.” Guiteau also presumed that the now-President Arthur would pressure the Supreme Court into hearing his court appeal. He was hanged on June 30, 1882, in the District of Columbia. Did the conspirators break their deal with the hapless, witless Guiteau?
On the scaffold for his hanging, Guiteau stated, “I am now going to read some verses which are intended to indicate my feelings at the moment of leaving this world. If set to music they may be rendered very effective. The idea is that of a child babbling to his mamma and his papa. I wrote it this morning about 10 o’clock.” The song was entitled, “Going to Meet My Lordy.” It describes the flying monkey personality perfectly.