The Story of Freeda Bolt

Posted by | December 19, 2017

The Roanoke [VA] Times, Thursday Morning, December 19, 1929–

Body of Floyd County Girl Is Found On Bent Mountain; Disappeared Last Thursday

Extensive Search Had Been Made for Freeda Bolt, 18,
of Near Willis–Sheriff Locates Body
on Information Reported Given Him By Buren Harmon,
Held at Floyd in Connection With Case.

The body of Freeda Bolt, 18, of near Willis, Floyd County, who disappeared last Thursday night, was found at ten o’clock last night on Bent Mountain, eighteen miles south of Roanoke.

Discovery of the body was made by Sheriff Hilton, of Floyd, and two deputies who, acting on the reported statements of Buren Harmon, of Floyd county, who has been held since the girl’s disappearance, that the body would be found beneath several logs, about thirty yards from the highway, where the highway makes a bend on the mountain.

Sheriff Hilton discovered the body about ten o’clock, and communicated with Roanoke county officers, who departed at eleven o’clock for the scene.

The body, fully clothed, was found in a secluded spot in the woods, and was in a fair state of preservation, Dr. G. A. L. Kolmer, Roanoke county coroner, said at 1:30 o’clock this morning, in a telephonic communication.

Freeda BoltA heavy cord had been tied tightly around the victim’s neck, but whether or not this had been used for the purpose of strangulation or to drag the body from the road to its hiding place, Dr. Kolmer and Deputy Sheriff J. L. Richardson were unable to say. Only a cursory examination was made this morning before the body was removed to the home of J. D. Willett, half a mile from the scene.

Arrangements were being made to remove the body to Salem, where an autopsy will be held today, Dr. Kolmer said. Whether or not Harmon will be turned over to Roanoke county authorities has not been determined, Deputy Sheriff Richardson said, since it has not been established just where the young girl met her death.

The girl, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. K. Bolt, who reside about seven mile from Willis, had been boarding in Willis, while attending school. Telling friends she was going to be married, she left her boarding house last Thursday night and, according to her father’s report to police here, she was later seen in company with Harmon, apparently headed toward Roanoke.

Harmon was seen in Floyd Friday morning, the father stated, but denied having seen the girl on the previous night. He admitted, it was said, that he had an appointment with her that night, but contended that the meeting never took place.

Since that time, Mr. Bolt had asked the aid of police in the principal cities of the State in helping to locate his daughter. It was at first thought that she probably had come to Roanoke, since Harmon had friends here. Search, however, was extended to Richmond and other cities.

Deputy Sheriff J. L. Richardson, accompanied by Dr. G. A. L. Kolmer, county coroner, and R. T. Hubard, commonwealth’s attorney, of Salem, went to the scene, arriving there shortly after midnight.


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