Bibb County Alabama

Crime News Items


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Melton Prude, a Bibb County negro is in the Birmingham jail charged with passing counterfeit money.  Source: Marion County Herald, Marion County AL, June 20, 1889 - Transcribed by Veneta McKinney


Randolph, Jan. 11 – Some three months ago Mr. B.B. Head of Bibb county was murdered by one Jim Tate, and Tate was arrested a few days ago in Jackson Parish, Louisiana, but its sheriff,  R. H. Jones, the sheriff, arrived in Randolph at 10 o’clock last night on this way to Centeville jail, and between the train hotel Mr. Jones was shot from ambush by unknown parties, evidently for the purpose of releasing Tate, the murderer of Mr. Head, and when Mr. Jones was shot down the prisoner escaped and is at large todaySource: Vernon Courier, Lamar County AL, January 15, 1891 - Transcribed by Veneta McKinney

A NOTED OUTLAW KILLED - Birmingham, Ala. - June 22 - Jim Morrison, the noted Bibb County desperado, has at last been run to death.  He and his brother, the notorious Jack, were mortally wounded by a party of officers Tuesday morning near Paine's saw mill, in Hale County.
        Jim is an escaped convict and was wanted in Bibb County on indictments charging him with murder and arson.  Jack was wanted for burglary and arson.  Detective Green, Cherry Collins and a guide went to the farm where these outlaws were known to work.  The plan was to take them by surprise and secure their capture without bloodshed.
        A woman at the house caught on to their presence and notified the Morrisons.  They, thinking the men were the fox hunters went in the woods, and when confronted by the officers and covered with pistols, drew their weapons and opened fire, but too late.  Three volleys from Winchesters and two of buckshot settled it.  The Morrisons fell, and in an hour there were sixty or seventy men on the scene.  It developed that the outlaws were about twenty strong, but they could do notifying with the detectives, as about fifty friends of the offices put in an appearance,.  Jim died in about six hours, and Jack's wounds are undoubtedly fatal.
        For two years these boys have successfully eluded all plans of their capture.  All during this time the State has had a price of $500 on Jim's head.  Originally there were eight brothers, but only four are left, and all were either killed or are now in jail.  Source: Vernon Courier, Lamar County AL, June 30, 1892 - Transcribed by Veneta McKinney


The Bibb county grand jury has indicted Dr. G. B. Crowe, for the murder of B. F. Blass, at Brierfield, July 1, 1891.  Source: Hamilton Times, Marion County AL, June 8, 1893 - Transcribed by Veneta McKinney


JIM MORRISON, a notorious desperado from Bibb County, and five other prisoners escaped from Pratt Mines one day last week by cutting their way from one mine to another. Dynamite was used to blow down gates in the mines.  Morrison and another prisoner were overtaken by Deputy Sheriff Dexter, of Bibb County, when a fight ensued.  Dexter was killed.  This is the third time MORRISON has escaped from the mines   Source: Hamilton Free Press, Marion County AL, January 25, 1894 - Transcribed by Veneta McKinney


Jim Morrison, the escaped convict, who about a year ago killed Deputy Sheriff Dexter, of Bibb County, was shot and killed last Thursday by Deputy Sheriff Henry Cole, of Jefferson. Deputy Cole had learned that Morrison was staying at the house of a Mr. Vines who lives in the fork of the warrior and little Warrior Rivers, about 30 miles southwest of Birmingham, under the name of Johnson, and that he intended visiting a certain house that evening. Deputy Cole, in company with John Hubbard, lay on the road until Morison was seen approaching. Hubbard when withdrew into the woods. When Morrison was within about thirty yards Deputy Cole ordered him to throw up his hands. Instead of doing so he began to bring his gun from "right shoulder' to "ready." The officer fired and Morrison fell, pierced by five large buckshot. He lingered about five hours after being shot. The body was carried to Birmingham, where it was seen by two of his brothers and fully identified.  [Source: Hamilton News Press - Marion county Alabama - March 28, 1895 - Transcribed and submitted by Veneta McKinney] 

1896 - Night of Robbery.
Bart Thrasher, the Notorious Bibb County Outlaw, Does Several Jobs.
         Birmingham, Ala., Jan. 1.--Bart Thrasher, the notorious Bibb county outlaw, who, with six other convicts, recently broke out of the Pratt mine's penitentiary and, overpowering the guards, escaped, turned up at Horse Creek with an unknown pal, and had a night of robbing and murdering.
          Ben Adair and a farmer named Jones, while returning home, were held up by Thrasher and his pal, who wore masks and carried pistols, Jones threw up his hands when commanded to do, but Adair resisted, when Thrasher shot him dead. The living and dead were then robbed. An hour later the outlaws help up Watchman Davis at Ivy mines and secured his cash and watch. Later on they robbed two miners near Victor mines and concluded by robbing two others at May Ellen mines. The watchman saw Thrasher remove the mask from his face and recognized him. The people around Horse Creek are greatly excited over the night's events, and a strong posse, heavily armed, are searching for the desperadoes, who are in hiding in the mountains and swear they will not be taken alive.
           Adair is the third man Thrasher has killed. For the murder of a Bibb county farmer seven years ago he served a term in prison. Last spring he killed a Negro at Horse creek, for which murder he was serving a ten years' sentence when he escaped. Thrasher is a pal of the late Jim Morrison, the Bibb county outlaw, who was killed last summer by Deputy Sheriff Cole, after having escaped from the penitentiary, and is the most desperate criminal in Alabama. He has escaped from prison three times and twice when recaptured had been shot before he could be secured.  Source: Marietta Daily Leader, Jan. 2, 1896, Transcribed by C. Anthony 
Citizens Afraid to Aid the Sheriff in Hunting Down the Notorious Outlaw
Birmingham, Ala, Aug 14 (Special) - Bart Thrasher, the outlaw who yesterday, with a pal, went to the town of Blocton and murdered Deputy Sheriff Griffin Bass because of the latter helping to kill his brother, ins terrorizing Bibb county.  Last night he burned the barn and stables of N. L. Wilson, justice of the peace at Blocton and brother-in-law of Bass, because Wilson has rendered the officers assistance in their efforts to capture the Thrasher gang. All of Wilson's horses perished in the flames.  Sheriff Latham had so far been unable to raise a sufficient force to capture Thrasher and his pals because of the fear that Thrasher and his friends will wreck vengeance upon all who turn against him, just as he threatens to murder every man connected with his brother's death.  Latham came to Birmingham this evening to secure help and may have to call on the governor.  Thrasher today boated that he intended to kill Latham and Deputy Pink Montgomery and then says he will come to Birmingham and shoot Deputies Henry Cole and Robert Waldrop for the aid they rendered Latham and the part they took in killing Elisha Thrasher, the outlaw's brother.  Thrasher and his pals boldly go about Blocton heavily armed, defying arrest. Source: Vernon Courier, Lamar County AL, August 20, 1896 - Transcribed by Veneta McKinney




George Bradford, the young negro arrested in Bibb County recently, charged with criminal assault, and who narrowly escaped lynching, has been released, his innocence having been established.  It was shown that his confession was made with a rope around his neck and under fear of death.  The boy’s father was lynched last month for a similar offense.  However, his guilt was proven beyond doubt.  Source: Marion County News, Marion county Alabama - May 27, 1897 - Transcribed and submitted by Veneta McKinney] 





At Vance the office of O. E. CARROLL, the depot and post office were broken into Wednesday night by unknown person.  Mr. Lawrence, depot agent, says that all he has missed is a suit of clothes.  About $7 in government money was taken from the post office. The robbers left as a clue a pair of gloves in the post office.  Source: Marion County Republican, Marion county Alabama - October 14, 1908 - Transcribed and submitted by Veneta McKinney] 


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