Tag Archives: crime in Appalachia

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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Yellow Mama claims her first victim in AL

“Some time between 1 o’clock and daybreak, Horace Devaughn will be led into the death chamber to pay the penalty for the murder of A.B. Moore and Mrs. Ruby Thornton in Birmingham last January,” reported The St. Petersburg Times on April 5, 1927. Three days later Devaughn, a black man, was executed at Kilby Prison, […]

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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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He was laboring to prevent the sudden discovery that he was the lost child

“Two strokes of paralysis convinced me that I am on the borderland, I feel it my duty before my voice is hushed upon the shore to give some tragical features in the life of my brother, Stillman, in proof of the perpetuity and power of nursery impressions. “A childless couple was my father’s nearest neighbors. […]

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With their heads together as lovin’ as two little kittens

Major crime remained very rare in Noble County [OH], and the occasional exceptions made big news. One of the county’s more baffling murder cases began on November 5, 1905, when the family of William Leisure returned to their Carlisle home from Sunday church services and found Leisure sitting fatally wounded in his chair with two […]

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