Mudd, Samuel (Alexander)(1833–83) physician; born in Charles County, Maryland. A Maryland physician and Confederate sympathizer, he set John Wilkes Booth's broken leg after Lincoln's assassination. He was sentenced to life imprisonment after being convicted of abetting Booth's escape; although he had met Booth at church, he never was implicated in any way in the plot to kill Lincoln. He heroically nursed fellow prisoners at Fort Jefferson (off Key West, Florida) through a yellow fever epidemic before his 1869 pardon and return to Maryland. Continual efforts by his descendants to have his guilty conviction set aside—on grounds that he was only doing his duty as a doctor—continue to this day, but have so far been unavailing.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.