Sunday, July 27, 2014

July 27, 1895: Charlie Burwell

The following article comes from the Decatur Daily Republican (Decatur, Illinois) dated July 29, 1895:


By the Real Perpetrators of Crimes of Which He was Suspected.

MEMPHIS, Tenn., July 29.—Charlie Burwell, an aged negro, was lynched near Meridian, Miss., Saturday night about 10 o'clock.  It was at first supposed that he had been hanged for complicity in some of the hold-ups and attempted murders in that vicinity, which recently stirred the people to fever heat, or for living in adultery with a white woman, one Lizzie Hart, a loose character.  It was thought that he was concerned in the Farmer outrage, which occurred within a stone's throw of where he was hanged.

On the night of July 4, Lewis Farmer and his wife, who ran a small store about two miles from here, were murderously assaulted and left for dead, after which their store was robbed.  The perpetrators escaped, and several suspects are now confined in jail.  As already stated that he was one of the parties to the crime.

Later developments seem to fasten the lynching on the real culprits, since it is learned that the old negro, Charles Burwell, was promised a reward of $250 to ferret out the guilty parties, and this becoming known to them they went to his house, dragged him to Sowashee bridge and strung him from a beam.  A coroner's jury rendered a verdict that he came to his death at the hands of unknown parties.

I would like to add that according to another article, Charlie Burwell was around 65 years of age.

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