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The Insanity Retrial of Mary Lincoln

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In 1875, Mary Todd Lincoln's son, Robert Lincoln, petitioned to have his mother institutionalized for insanity. Mary Lincoln was declared insane and subsequently detained in Bellevue Sanatorium for four months. One year later, Mary Lincoln underwent another trial; however, this one proved more beneficial to the widow, as she received a formal declaration of sanity and the restoration of control over her assets.

Now, over a century later, various Mary Lincoln historians, legal experts, and mental health professionals have been assembled to discuss the question of Mary Todd Lincoln's insanity. This roundtable examination of Mary's mental state has been broken up amongst two panels—one which focuses on historic interpretations and other other on modern perspectives. Join these two panels as they examine this infamous case of insanity, its ramifications, and its modern interpretations.