Dirty Dan (Sickles) Still Making Headlines!

Bee

Captain
Asst. Regtl. Quartermaster Gettysburg 2017
Joined
Dec 21, 2015
Messages
6,203
#1
2UB6WKCUFA7VLKPMS67XMHTNTI.jpg


Capture74.JPG


‘Temporarily insane’: A congressman, a sensational killing and a new legal defense


The affair began, Teresa Sickles remembered, in the spring of 1858.

She was the 23-year-old wife of first-term New York Democratic congressman Daniel Edgar Sickles. Her lover, Philip Barton Key II, was the district attorney for Washington and the son of Francis Scott Key, who wrote the lyrics of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

The couple would rendezvous not far from the Sickles home on Lafayette Square, where they lived just steps from the White House, at an unoccupied house on 15th Street. There, as Teresa put it in a written confession demanded by her husband after he learned of the affair, they engaged in “intimacy of an improper kind.”

More colorfully, she put it another way: “I did what is usual for a wicked woman to do.”

QXSJOIGQRY5TRJBC7WQYHMFAXM.jpg

Teresa Sickles as seen in Harper’s Weekly. (Library of Congress)
Then, as now, extramarital dalliance was not uncommon among the men and women who moved in the capital’s social and political circles. Rep. David Outlaw, a North Carolina Whig who served in Congress during the late 1840s and early 1850s, filled letters to his wife with details of “congressmen going home with married ladies, women sending married men valentines, and even a senator producing a child out of wedlock with a boardinghouse owner,” historian Rachel A. Shelden has written.

Outlaw discreetly declined to share this gossip with the press, Shelden notes. But the affair between Sickles and Key took a violent turn on Feb. 27, 1859, that made it national news.

More Here: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news...d-a-new-legal-defense/?utm_term=.5bcc784ab595
 

(Membership has it privileges! To remove this ad: Register NOW!)

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
17,870
Location
Central Pennsylvania
#3
It's just an opinion but have always thought this veritable Twinkie defense somewhat warped Sickles. Like a little kid who knows how to manipulate parents, he knew he got away with murder, since it worked, made him further exploit all the worst ( dirtiest ) aspects of his character. There were a few.

Seems to have convinced himself, through time, he was Teflon. He was, too.
 

Bee

Captain
Asst. Regtl. Quartermaster Gettysburg 2017
Joined
Dec 21, 2015
Messages
6,203
#7
Seems to have convinced himself, through time, he was Teflon. .
I could not agree more with this comment: a monster was birthed early on.

Until he wasn't.

Sickles had held the unpaid post as chairman of the [New York State Monuments] Commission for twenty-six years. Several months prior to the Gettysburg anniversary, Sickles suffered another public embarrassment. The State Controller had been attempting an accounting of the commission's funds since 1910. When Controller William Sohmer finally saw the books in late 1912, he discovered that chairman Sickles had vouchers for only $417,165 of the $445,641 that had been given the commission for expenditure on state monuments: $28,486 was unaccounted for. James A Hessler, Sickles at Gettysburg, [p 374]
An immediate investigation revealed that Sickles had embezzled the money, and whilst they chose not to prosecute due to a PR nightmare, Sickles was removed as chairman, and spent his last years in disgrace.
 
Last edited:

Bee

Captain
Asst. Regtl. Quartermaster Gettysburg 2017
Joined
Dec 21, 2015
Messages
6,203
#10
I always have wondered about the relationship between him and his wife afterwards. Did she want to remain with him, or was she forced to because he wouldn't grant her request for a divorce, which was necessary in those days? Either way it is a rather disturbing situation.
I just read a passage that describes Sickles and Theresa [wife] kept in constant contact during the trial, and that their families urged them to remain together.
 

StephenColbert27

First Sergeant
Joined
Aug 4, 2015
Messages
1,395
Location
Lost, Somewhere in London
#11
I just read a passage that describes Sickles and Theresa [wife] kept in constant contact during the trial, and that their families urged them to remain together.
Interesting. Be sure to tell me what else you find! I don't mind it so much if she genuinely wanted to remain with him, just knowing the social dynamics at the time I wonder if she did so by choice or not. If not it would be a messed-up relationship to have to remain with the murderer of your lover.
 

Bee

Captain
Asst. Regtl. Quartermaster Gettysburg 2017
Joined
Dec 21, 2015
Messages
6,203
#12
Interesting. Be sure to tell me what else you find! I don't mind it so much if she genuinely wanted to remain with him, just knowing the social dynamics at the time I wonder if she did so by choice or not. If not it would be a messed-up relationship to have to remain with the murderer of your lover.
Theresa died young and alone with their daughter Laura, living in obscurity in New York. I am reading that once he became *cough* a Gettysburg war hero, he basically picked up his life as a womanizer, and Theresa & daughter Laura were left behind and ignored. Even the book states that not much is known about their relationship, as she was seemingly invisible in Sickle's life.
 

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
17,870
Location
Central Pennsylvania
#13
An immediate investigation revealed that Sickles had embezzled the money, and whilst they chose not to prosecute due to a PR nightmare, Sickles was removed as chairman, and spent his last years in disgrace.

No way! You hate to wish harm on anyone but he caused so much unhappiness to others, it's reassuring his less than honorable proclivities were finally dealt with. He just sounds so gosh darn poisonous to tangle with, given the reputations damaged.

Drat it, Bee. Now I'm beginning to feel a little sorry for the old guy in the wheelchair. Just when the old rotter seems hopelessly swarmy, I think what Gettysburg would look like if he hadn't thrown his weight around. ( Yes, his take on his part in the battle was er, interesting; for a scoundrel, couldn't doubt the guy's willingness to get on a horse and be blown up. ) You know this, so do not mean to come across as ' telling ' you old news- the veritable carnival slash resort planned, Sickles thwarted.
 

Ole Miss

Sergeant Major
Forum Host
Silver Patron
Joined
Dec 9, 2017
Messages
2,197
Location
North Mississippi
#14
Dan Sickles was many things but a man burden with morals and ethics he was not. Not the type of character to allow facts and circumstances get in the way of a good story he reveled in the slime of the Democratic political machine Tammany Hall and its shenanigans. That he shot Key for adultery is the height of irony considering his many affairs and dalliances with prostitutes. Truly a 19th century Grinch!

His military record speaks for itself culminating in his actions at Gettysburg! That ought to spark a lively discussion!
Regards
David
 

Similar threads




(Membership has it privileges! To remove this ad: Register NOW!)
Top