CBSE Class 8 English Worksheet - Passage (3)
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I Read the following passage and answer the questions given below:
On the night of April 14, 1865—five days after the Civil War ended—President Abraham
Lincoln was attending the theater in Washington, D.C. In the middle of the performance, an
actor named John Wilkes Booth, seeking to avenge the defeat of the South, slipped into
the presidential box and shot the President. Booth escaped the theater but broke his leg
when he leaped from the President’s box seat to the stage. Before anybody could stop him,
he limped out the back door, mounted a waiting horse, and disappeared into the night with
a fellow conspirator. Five hours later, at four o’clock in the morning, Booth and his
companion knocked on the door of Samuel Mudd, a doctor living in southern Maryland. Dr.
Mudd knew nothing about the assassination of the President, and acting as any doctor
would to a stranger in distress, set the leg and persuaded the two travelers to stay in his
house for the rest of the night. The next morning, Booth and his friend, using false names,
paid the bill and departed. Because of this merciful act, Dr. Mudd was arrested, taken to
Washington, and tried on the charge that he was a friend of Booth’s and therefore helped
plan the assassination. Dr. Mudd insisted that he knew nothing of the plot. But the military
courts, angry at the President’s death, sentenced the unfortunate doctor to life
imprisonment. Dr.Mudd was imprisoned at Fort Jefferson, an island fortress in the middle
of the sea about 120 miles west of the southern tip of Florida.
As horrible and unjust as this punishment must have been, a greater plight lurked at Fort
Jefferson. The warm,humid climate was a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes. Again
and again, these pests spread yellow fever germs to prisoners and guards alike.
When the fever struck, Dr.Mudd volunteered his services, because he was the only doctor
on the island. He had to fight the disease, even after he was infected himself. In spite of the
fact that the guards and other inmates called him “that Lincoln murderer,” and treated him
very badly, he worked hard to fight the disease.
Meanwhile, his wife was working heroically back in Washington for her husband’s cause.
After a four-year struggle, she secured a pardon for him—for a crime he never committed.
Dr.Mudd returned to Maryland to pick up the pieces of his shattered life. Soon after
Dr.Mudd’s release, Fort Jefferson was abandoned. Today, the one-time prison sits in
ruins, inhabited only by birds—and mosquitoes.
1. Dr.Mudd was convicted because
a. he helped Booth assassinate Lincoln.
b. he helped Booth get away.
c. the military courts wanted someone to pay for Lincoln’s death.
d. he lied to the military courts.
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