POLITICS

These Images Show What An Impeachment Looked Like 150 Years Ago

President Andrew Johnson was impeached for "high crimes and misdemeanors" in 1868.

Monday marked 150 years since impeachment proceedings began against President Andrew Johnson.

Johnson, who was vice president when Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in 1865, was accused of “high crimes and misdemeanors” after he fired prominent Cabinet members. He was acquitted and served out the remainder of his term and later served in the U.S. Senate, but his legacy remains as the first president to be impeached.

Photos from the trial show how the process played out, down to the tickets issued to Senate members. It would be 130 more years before another successful impeachment by the House of Representatives, that of President Bill Clinton. 

  • Andrew Johnson (1808-1875) served as vice president under Abraham Lincoln, taking office as president in 1865 after Lincoln's
    Library of Congress via Getty Images
    Andrew Johnson (1808-1875) served as vice president under Abraham Lincoln, taking office as president in 1865 after Lincoln's assassination.
  • Mathew Brady studio portrait of the House of Representatives impeachment committee of President Andrew Johnson in 1868. Stand
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    Mathew Brady studio portrait of the House of Representatives impeachment committee of President Andrew Johnson in 1868. Standing from left are James F. Wilson, George S. Boutwell and John A. Logan. Seated are Benjamin F. Butler, Thaddeus Stevens, Thomas Williams and John A. Bingham.
  • The impeachment committee prepares the indictment.
    Historical via Getty Images
    The impeachment committee prepares the indictment.
  • Engraving depicts a courtroom scene during the 1868 impeachment of Andrew Johnson.
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    Engraving depicts a courtroom scene during the 1868 impeachment of Andrew Johnson.
  • George T. Brown, sergeant-at-arms of the Senate, serves the summons on President Johnson.
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    George T. Brown, sergeant-at-arms of the Senate, serves the summons on President Johnson.
  • Facsimile of a ticket of admission to the Impeachment Trial of President Andrew Johnson in the United States Senate on March
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    Facsimile of a ticket of admission to the Impeachment Trial of President Andrew Johnson in the United States Senate on March 13, 1868. The Senate failed to convict Johnson by one vote.
  • Charles Sumner, a Senate leader in the impeachment trial of Andrew Johnson.
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    Charles Sumner, a Senate leader in the impeachment trial of Andrew Johnson.
  • Thaddeus Stevens closes the debate on the Andrew Johnson impeachment in the House in March 1868.
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    Thaddeus Stevens closes the debate on the Andrew Johnson impeachment in the House in March 1868.
  • Edwin McMasters Stanton, secretary of war under Lincoln, led the attempt to convict Lincoln's successor, Andrew Johnson.
    MPI via Getty Images
    Edwin McMasters Stanton, secretary of war under Lincoln, led the attempt to convict Lincoln's successor, Andrew Johnson.
  • The vote of the Senate, sitting as the High Court of Impeachment for the trial of Andrew Johnson. They failed to convict him
    Getty Images
    The vote of the Senate, sitting as the High Court of Impeachment for the trial of Andrew Johnson. They failed to convict him by one vote.
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