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  • Writer's pictureBrian Powers

Episode 16 - Murder in Lafayette Square: Off Key

Where to begin with this one - there's just so much. Let's start with Buchanan's reaction - not trying to see if there were more witnesses, just shoving a bunch of money at a frightened page and telling him to get out of town? Genius. That's sort of what we have come to expect from the guy who literally let the country fall apart on his watch. His right-hand man brought a madam to meet the Queen instead of his wife? Who trusted the judgment of these people?


Here are some other fun details -


  • The house that Key rented for the trysts had entrances on two streets so that both Key and Teresa could enter from separate sides alone to avoid suspicions.

  • The first time Sickles heard of the affair, it was from an ally who had heard it from some guy at a bar who ALSO was in love with Teresa Sickles and jealous of Key.

  • The letter that Sickles received had some choice language: "I do assure you that he has as much the use of your wife as you have." Teresa's confession has some interesting verbiage as well: "I did what is usual for a wicked woman to do." For 1859, this might as well be a Penthouse letter.

But really, there is just so much packed into this story, it's insane, and it makes for one interesting, if intense, moment in American history.





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