Lincoln in the Bardo

Lincoln in the Bardo

by

George Saunders

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Judge Carroll Character Analysis

A judge in Washington, D.C. who allows Mr. and Mrs. Lincoln to inter Willie in his crypt until the president and his family return to their home state of Illinois, where they plan to bury Willie on their own plot. This aspect of Lincoln in the Bardo is historically accurate, as Willie Lincoln lay in Judge Carroll’s crypt until 1865, when Abraham Lincoln was assassinated and transferred to Illinois along with his son.
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Judge Carroll Character Timeline in Lincoln in the Bardo

The timeline below shows where the character Judge Carroll appears in Lincoln in the Bardo. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 7
Transition and Impermanence Theme Icon
...be temporarily interred. “They have been loaned a place in the crypt belonging to Judge Carroll,” Isabelle writes. It is now nighttime, and she assures her brother that she’s grown accustomed... (full context)
Chapter 9
Transition and Impermanence Theme Icon
...voice, despite his startled demeanor. “I believe we have the honor of addressing a Mr. Carroll,” says Mr. Bevins, but the young boy only stares at him blankly. “No doubt you... (full context)
Chapter 23
Empathy and Equality Theme Icon
Loss Theme Icon
...dangled almost to the ground. The President, he writes, asked for the key to the Carroll crypt, which Manders gave him without question. “I handed it over and watched him wander... (full context)
Chapter 107
Transition and Impermanence Theme Icon
Empathy and Equality Theme Icon
Loss Theme Icon
...final entry in the cemetery logbook, explaining that he has just returned from visiting the Carroll crypt to make sure everything is all right. Inside, he saw Willie Lincoln’s coffin poking... (full context)