Monday, December 8, 2014

December 8, 1896: "Crazy Jim"

Today's article comes from The Wichita Daily Eagle (Wichita, Kansas) dated December 9, 1896:

Pine Bluffs, Ark., Dec. 8.—"Crazy Jim," the negro who brutally murdered one of the Williams boys and fatally wounded his brother in Melton township on Saturday, was captured this morning near the scene of his crime. Reports late tonight say that a mob of farmers took him from the officers and lynched him.


Our article of interest comes to us from the Freeport Journal-Standard (Freeport, Illinois) dated January 16, 1907:

SPOONER AND TILLMAN CLASH

Wisconsin Man Lashes the South Carolinian, Who Will Reply Later.

Washington, Jan. 16.—Goaded by frequent interruptions from Tillman the speech of Spooner in the senate on the resolution for the investigation of the affray at Brownsville was changed from a constitutional amendment in the defense of President Roosevelt's course in discharging a negro battalion of the army to a severe arraignment of the South Carolina senator. He quoted from Tillman's utterances defending lynching as a means of controlling negroes, and said that to encourage such mob violence was a disgrace to civilization. Tillman was not permitted to reply, but at the conclusion of Spooner's attack declared that at an early date he would take occasion to defend himself against "the insulting allusions made to him."

It was after Tillman had failed to "get in," as he expressed it, a reply to one of Spooner's statements, and had sat down, that Spooner "turned himself loose." He quoted from Tillman's utterances defending the burning of negroes at the stake, and said:  "No man ought to encourage such a horrible thing as that. It is a crime against civilization to encourage it. I have been shocked by the attitude of the senator from South Carolina on more than one occasion when he has spoken here in justification and the support of the continuance of lynching. If there is one man who ought not to encourage it, it is the man who sits here as maker of laws.

"And I want to say here that any man who encourages lynching, murder and lawlessness will have much to answer for, and the higher his position and the mightier his influence the more will he have to answer for. No man can come here with good grace to impeach the president for his dismissal of men because they were not identified as criminals, who comes to an accusation from a lynching bee, or who justifies one." After declaring there should not be one law for the colored man and another for the white man, Spooner again deprecated the fact that he had been drawn from the course mapped out for his speech and resumed his argument.

The bitter feeling provoked by the controversy between the senators makes it impossible to say when a vote can be had on the resolution. Spooner took the position that article 4 of the articles of war gives the commander-in-chief of the army power to dismiss troops in the manner employed. He referred to the affray at Walla Walla, Wash. during President Cleveland's administration, and said that the investigation of that disturbance resulted in a recommendation that the four companies involved be dismissed.


Thank you for joining me and as always, I hope I leave you with something to ponder.  

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