Thursday, December 25, 2014

December 25, 1882: Thomas Kerr

Today we learn about a lynching that occurred on Christmas in 1882 through the pages of the Harrisburg Telegraph (Harrisburg, Pennsylvania) dated December 27, 1882:

Christmas Episode in Arizona—Deliberate Murder—The Murderer Lynched.

A dispatch from Globe, Arizona, dated yesterday, says:  Yesterday morning, in a saloon at Pioneer, William Hartley stepped to the bar to take a drink, when Thomas Kerr, without provocation, knocked him down. Kerr then drew a pistol, and, saying "Young fellow, now I've got you," placed the muzzle to Hartley's breast and fired, killing him instantly. Kerr was disarmed, and a jury of twelve men held an informal trial. He asked for an hour's time to arrange his business. He sat down and with perfect coolness wrote to his mother at Lexington, Ill., requested that all his effects be given to her, and then called for several drinks. The citizens then took him out to a sycamore tree. He made a few remarks confessing the killing of several men. He was drawn up once and let down again, then asked permission to take off his boots, saying that he did not want to "die with his boots on." This request was granted and he was swung up. The body was cut down the next morning.

I must admit, I can't help but wonder what prompted the killing. I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday. Thank you for joining me and as always, I hope I leave you with something to ponder. 

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