Thursday, September 11, 2014

September 11, 1889: Frank Stack and Davis Boone

The following article is found in the Chicago Daily Tribune (Chicago, Illinois) dated September 12, 1889:

A DOUBLE LYNCHING AT MORGANTOWN.

A North Carolina Mob Take the Law in Their Own Hands—Indignant Citizens.

CHARLOTTE, N. C., Sept. 11.—There is big excitement throughout Burke county on account of a double lynching which occurred at Morgantown early this morning. Two Murderers, Frank Stack, white, and Davis Boone, colored, have been confined in the Morgantown jail for about one week. Stack, the 9th of last month, shot down and instantly killed Robert Parker in his garden at Rutherford college. Boone murdered a white man named Heldon at a campmeeting, Sunday night, Sept. 1. When Stack was captured and placed in jail some eight days ago fears were then expressed that he would be lynched, and an extra guard was placed about the jail to insure protection. A few days after Stack was put in jail Boone was placed in prison also, and talk of lynching was again heard.

Early this morning 200 masked men silently rode into Morgantown and marching to the jail demanded the keys. This being refused, heavy hammers were used, and the doors were soon battered down. Only a few blows were required to break the locks on the two cell doors in which Stack and Boone were confined. As the men stepped into Stack's cell they found the murderer lying on the floor muttering a prayer. When commanded to get up he made no attempt, but shook like a leaf. The two men jerked him to his feet and started out with him. Boone was being carried out into the hallway of the jail. Both were brought together and securely bound. The mob carried the two murderers to a railroad bridge near by, and after taking them out in the middle of the bridge a twenty-foot rope was tied to a cross tie. One end of the rope was adjusted about Stack's neck and the other about the neck of Boone. The murderers were given five minutes to pray. The leader drew a watch from his pocket and timed them. When time was up he gave a signal and both were pushed off the bridge and their bodies were dangling over the small stream. Some shots were fired into them and then the mob dispersed and quickly galloped away.

The officers at Morgantown are making special efforts to capture the lynchers. Warrants for many parties have been issued and many arrests are expected to follow. Public sentiment does not justify the lynching.

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