Tag Archives: crime in Appalachia

He jumped on the bed, held his wife down and shot her through the head

State’s evidence portion of ‘Beck vs. State of Georgia,’ before Judge Estes, Rabun Superior Court, September Term 1885 In this partial court transcript, Eugene W. Beck is indicted for the murder of his wife, Ella Beck. He pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity. He was convicted for life at the state penitentiary, where he […]

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The Great B&O Train Robbery

“Two men with guns was robbing people. Going through the train, they shot a porter in the leg, and proceeded to go to the engineer. Going through the diesel part, they ran across a diesel mechanic, who back in them days rode the diesels. And the one boy put the diesel mechanic down on the floor and told him to lay there.”

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Curt Jett, the wild dog of the mountains

“Curt Jett was a member of the Hargis clan in the Hargis-Cockrill feud. Once he was under sentence of death, but the Kentucky Court of Appeals reversed the verdict and he accepted a life term without appeal. That was for the killing of James Cockrill, July 20, 1902, near the courthouse at Jackson. He claimed […]

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Double murder in Vinton County, part 2

…continued On November 11, 1926, young neighbor Manville Perry noticed the living room door of William and Sarah Stout’s farmhouse open, and was shocked by the sight he saw. He ran to a nearby coal mine and called for several miners to accompany him back to the farm. Mrs. Stout’s body lay in front of […]

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Double murder in Vinton County, part 1

The last time she saw William Stout, the man missing, he was mending fences here at his Axtel Ridge place, Inez Palmer told the sheriff. She’d heard her boyfriend’s father had headed out west, and was acting strangely before he left Vinton County. Maude “Sheriff Maude” Collins and her deputy Ray Cox followed the trail […]

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