On This Day

Charles J. Guiteau

Assassin Charles J. Guiteau

Profession: Assassin

United States of America

Biography: Charles J. Guiteau is the assassin of US President Garfield. In 1881 in a deliberate attempt he shot and wounded the President.

Guiteau attempted careers as a lawyer and theologian, failing to shine at either. After a speech he wrote for President Garfield, Guiteau believed himself responsible for Garfield's presidential victory. After his request for an ambassador's position was refused he planned and shot Garfield.

Garfield eventually died of his injuries, in part to poor medical care. Guiteau's subsequent trial is remembered as one of the first instances that a plea of insanity was considered in a major US case. He was found guilty and hanged.

Born: September 8, 1841
Birthplace: Freeport, Illinois, USA
Star Sign: Virgo

Died: June 30, 1882 (aged 40)
Cause of Death: Hanging

Historical Events

  • 1881-07-02 US President James Garfield shot by Charles J. Guiteau a disappointed office-seeker; Garfield dies 79 days later
  • 1881-11-14 Charles J. Guiteau put on trial for the assassination of US President Garfield

Famous Assassins