Around 1965, a Baltimore woman was burning some old letters she found in a desk she was cleaning out when she realized the signature on the bottom of the letters was “J. Wilkes Booth.”

The letters that survived were written when the assassin was 15 or 16.

Written from Tudor Hall, the Booth’s country home near Bel Air, Md., they are the only known writings from the period before Booth began acting.

Right or Wrong, God Judge Me:” The Writings of John Wilkes Booth, edited by John Rhodehamel and Louise Taper