The state was admitted to the Union on November 21, 1789.
North Carolina has executed 784 people from 1726 to 1961.
127 of these executions were prior to Statehood, 657 after.
George Sennecca, a Native American, became the first executed when he was hanged for murder on August 26, 1726 for a crime committed in Chowan County.
Catherine Sullivan was the first female executed. She was hanged for an unknown crime on February 26, 1739. She was 1 of 6 people executed that day. The others were slaves hanged for an unknown crime in Chowan County.
19 year old Bessie Williams, a Black house maid, was convicted of Murder-Robbery and died in the gas chamber on December 29, 1944. She was the last female executed in North Carolina. The crime occurred in Mecklenberg County.
Black farm hand Theodore Boykin died in the gas chamber on January 27,1961 for a Murder-Rape-Robbery in Duplin County. He was the last person executed in North Carolina.
North Carolina's most famous executee is Thomas Dula, hanged on May 1, 1868 for the murder of Laura Foster. A ballad was written by a local poet, Thomas C. Land shortly after the execution. In the early 1960's the Kingston Trio's song "Hang Down Your Head, Tom Dooley" hit the top of the music record charts. The tale of Tom Dula is one of love, betrayal, and murder.
Hanging was the primary method of execution until Black rapist Walter Morrison died in the electric chair on March 18, 1910. The crime was committed in Robeson County.
Electrocution lasted until Allen Foster died in the gas chamber on January 24, 1936 for a murder committed in Hoke County.
Of the 784 people that have been executed in North Carolina, 18 of them were women.
This is an average of 3.3 executions a year.
There were 421 Hangings, 166 Electrocutions, 194 by Gas Chamber, 9 Burning at the Stake and 1 Other.
(Submitted by Jo Ann Scott )