Coroner's Inquistions
 1893 - 1908
NEWBERRY COUNTY, SOUTH CAROLINA
Transcribed and contributed by Edith Greisser

State of South Carolina, County of Newberry 

An inquisition indented taken at P. C. Smith’s place in Newberry County the tenth day of June A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Laurens Pitts (colored child) then and there being dead by the oaths of Duck Cannon, Dave Gary, Jonas Gary, Boyce Rook, Spence Conner, Belton Rook, Dave Wyatt, Nelson Livingston, Anthony Pitts, Noah Griffin, Whit Andrews, Andrew Gray being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Laurens Pitts came to his death upon their oaths do say that the said Laurens Pitts came to his death on the 10th day of June 1893 on Mr. P. C. Smith’s place in Newberry County on account of concentrated lye having been given it the hands of its little sister Sula Pitts on June 9.

In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County
Spencer Cannon, Foreman, Duck (X) Cannon, Dave  (X) Gary, Jonas (X)  Gary, Boyce (X)  Rook, Belton  (X) Rook, Dave  (X) Wyatt, Nelson  (X) Livingston, Anthony (X)  Pitts, Noah  (X) Griffin, Whit  (X) Andrews, Andrew (X) Gray

EVIDENCE

Ella Pitts being sworn says: Laurens Pitts is my child. I was in the field hoeing cotton. Just before dinner Aunt Mary Leak came and called me. She told me to come to my boy. I came and as I got near to the house my little girl told me my baby was dying – to come quick. I came and picked it up. When I first saw it its lips were swelled and I thought its mouth was mashed. When I picked it up I smelled lye upon it and its clothes were slick with concentrated lye. I asked my little girl who gave it the concentrated lye. She said she gave it to it. She said she didn’t know why she gave it to the baby. My little girl is six years old. She said she poured it out in a plate and gave it to the baby. The lye was sitting on the water shelf behind the water bucket. My little girl got up on the table to get the lye. The lye was given to the baby yesterday and it died today June 10th before dinner. About 10 o’clock Dr. Smith was here to see my child last night. I gave it oil and lard. Lelia Owens came to the house about 9 o’clock to put on bread and go to Mr. William Smith’s after milk. She said the baby throwed up one time when she came up. The little girl asked her to come see about the baby but she didn’t have time and paid no attention to it.                                                                           Ella (X) Pitts
Mary Leak being sworn says: When I was going to my house to get dinner yesterday June 9th I heard Henry Ella’s little boy hollering. I thought it was mine. I went home. My little boy told me I ought to go and see Ella’s baby. He said it was throwing up and blood was running out of its mouth. He said Henry was calling his mother because he thought the baby was dying. I came up and found the baby throwing up what it had eaten.  I raised its head up and wiped its mouth and went out and called Ella Pitts, its mother. When she came from the field I came with her. She took up the child and said, “Lord have mercy, my child had lye’. I said – how you know? She got the box and said, “Look here”. She got the box off the shelf and said it had been sitting there all the year. I saw no plate with lye.
                                                                                                                                                      Mary (X)  Leak
Lela Owens being sworn says: I came to our house to put on bread. The baby was in the cradle. It was about 10 o’clock. The baby was throwing up vituals. Sula, Ella’s little girl, told me to come and see about the baby. I said I didn’t have time and paid no attention to the baby. Thought it had eat a fly. When I came to the house there was nobody there but the children. I saw no plate with lye – didn’t notice. When I came back to the house after going to Mr. William Smith’s I found a plate on the table that had lye in it. The plate was covered up by the big dish pan. I didn’t notice the plate when I made up dough for dinner. When I first came to the house I _Ella Pitts- went to the field to get her yesterday morning and left nobody but the children.                                                     Lela  (X) Owens

W. G. Houseal being sworn says: I have examined the dead child of Ella Pitts, Laurens Pitts. Its death was caused by swallowing concentrated lye.                                                                                                  W. G. Houseal MD

State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Sam Tribble’s place in Newberry County the 5th day of July A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Lizza Pitts then and there being dead by the oaths of Sam Tribble, Alex Davis, Mack Thompson, Joe Randal, William Burton, Joseph Sheppard, Jake Clarke, James Nelson, Andrew Burton, Levi Ebo, Billy Wilson, Willis Burton being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Lizza Pitts came to her death upon their oaths do say that the said Lizza Pitts came to her death on Sam Tribble’s place in Newberry County on the July 4th 1893 from natural causes. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

Sam  (X) Tribble Foreman, Alex (X) Davis. Mack (X) Thompson, Joe (X) Ranson, William (X) Burton, Joseph (X) Sheppard, Jacob (X) Clarke, James (X) Nelson, Andrew (X) Burton, Levi (X) Ebo, Billy (X) Wilson, Willis (X) Burton

EVIDENCE

Sallie Pitts being sworn says: I am the mother of the dead child Lizza Pitts. She was eleven months old. We live on the Sam Tribble place in Newberry County. I left home yesterday July 4 about 2 o’clock or a little after. She was well as far as I know. She had not been sick any time lately except she had ‘the throat’, but it was nearly well. When I left home I went to ‘’a burying’ down at Workman’s about 2 miles away. I came back home at dark and found my child dead. It was lying on the floor where it is now but I put the palate under it. We dressed it for burial. I saw no marks of violence upon except a little place on its nose. I don’t know what caused its death. When I went away I left Lizzie with two little boys, my brother’s children. They didn’t live in my house but on the Tribble Place joining this. They were the only persons here when I left. I left it lying on the palate. The palate has been changed. I told the boys to keep it on the palate. When I got back they told me they had not taken it off the palate. The boys are named Foster Boozer and Arthur Boozer. They came to my house day before yesterday and have been here since. When I came back home only the two boys were there and the dead child. My house was as I left it. Her dress was over her face when I found her. It was a thin dress. The boys came with their father Monday night and he went to the ‘sitting up’. I had left Lizzie with the two boys Arthur and Foster before by themselves. They were never ill with it in any way. I have not heard the boys threaten Lizzie. They have always taken good care. They could not tell me anything about how my child died. I got it to sleep before I left and covered its face. The face was covered when I came. The boys told me it had awaked up while I was gone. The boys said they had not handled it. They didn’t say that they took my child and put in the bed.                                                                                                                                                                             Sallie (X) Pitts

Annie Boozer sworn says: I am the mother of Foster and Arthur Boozer. Arthur is going on six years old. I don’t know how old Foster is. I went to a ‘burying’ yesterday at Workman’s. I came to Sallie Pitts house last night after I heard Lizzie was dead. Lizzie was dressed when I saw her. She had on one piece of clothing, a diaper. I saw no marks of violence on the child. I saw Lottie Pitts dress it.                                                              Annie (X) Boozer

Willis Pitts being sworn says: I am the father of Lizzie Pitts. On July 4th I went to ‘a burying’ at the Workman’s. I left home before my wife. I came back home in the night. Soon in the night before 12 o’clock I heard before I got home that one of my children was dead. Somebody hollered it. I was surprised for it was not sick when I left home. When I left my wife the two boys Foster and Arthur Boozer and my two children. No one else was at my house when I left.                                                                                                                                                                              W. J. Pitts

Foster Boozer being sworn says: I was at my aunt’s all day the day she went to the burying. Lizzie was lying on the palate all day. I didn’t know Lizzie was dead when Aunt Sallie came home from the burying. She lay on the palate with a thin dress over her head. Nobody was here while aunt Sallie was gone.                      Foster (X) Boozer

Sam Boozer being sworn says: I am the father of Arthur and Foster Boozer and Foster will be 9 years old September 16. Arthur will be 6 years old the 22nd of next April. I know about how Lizzie Pitts came to her death on July 4th. I was at the burying on the Workman Place. I ‘sat up’ with the corpse the night before. I never knew my boys to do anything so mean as to hurt helpless children.                                                                                                 Sam Boozer

Amanda Mingo being sworn says: I saw a child lying here playing on the floor yesterday evening July 4th. It was one quarter of an hour before sundown as far as I know. Nothing was the matter with her. She was alive and playing. I came to the front door and looked in. I saw two little boys. These two boys, Arthur and Foster Boozer are the boys. A child was lying on a quilt near where one is now. It had a little stick, playing. I just stepped to the front door and asked where is your Auntie. Foster Boozer said, ‘Gone to the burying’. I asked what is the baby named and he said Minnie. He said the baby was in the room asleep. I went on my way. I went to Sam Tribble to see his wife and came up here to see Sallie. I don’t know which one was on the quilt, Minnie or Lizzie.                                     Amanda (X) Mingo

W. G. Houseal being sworn says: I have made a dissection and examined the dead body of Lizzie Pitts. I found no evidence of violence having been used upon her person. In my opinion her death was from natural causes.
                                                                                                                                                      W. G. Houseal MD


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Mrs. Sallie Wert’s place in Newberry County the 10th day of July A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Palace Davenport of Newberry County then and there being dead by the oaths of V. G. Longshore, Wilson Herbert, John Werts, Henry Robertson, John Robinson, Lewis Scott, Tom Sheppard, Will Herbert, Adam Nelson, Tom Werts, Dave Werber, Hamp Lake being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Palace Davenport came to her death upon their oaths do say that the said Palace Davenport came to her death on Mrs. Sallie Wert’s place in Newberry County on the July 9th 1893 from natural causes. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

V. G. Longshore Foreman of the Jury, Wilson (X) Herbert, John  (X) Werts, Henry  (X) Robinson, Lewis (X) Scott, Tom  (X) Sheppard, Will  (X) Herbert, Adam  (X) Nelson, Tom  (X) Werts, Dave  (X) Werber, Hamp  (X) Lake

EVIDENCE

Palace Davenport being sworn says: I was in the bed asleep and my mother called me and told me to come there. I didn’t get up right off after she called me. After awhile I heard her coughing. When I got up she was staggering about in the yard. She was coughing violently, straining like. I took her by the right shoulder and sat her down on the doorstep. I went up to Ella Harp’s house to get her to stay with me until she got better. I was gone about five minutes and when I got back she was breathing her last. She was lying back on the doorstep with her head lying in the door. She had been having coughing spells for several years. She would spit up when coughing. I never noticed what she spat up. She hauled cotton Wednesday. I never heard her complain. She had a spell Wednesday but it didn’t come on her good. Palace Davenport was my mother. She and brother Joseph Davenport and I lived together on Mrs. Sallie Wert’s place in Newberry County. My mother took sick late Sunday evening July 9th 1893 after dark. She died shortly after dark. I had gone to bed and gone to sleep. She was sitting on the doorstep when I went to bed and was not complaining of being sick. My mother stayed at home all day yesterday. Ella Harp came back with me when I returned from her house. She stopped at the corner of the house. She didn’t come up to where my mother was. I told her mother was foaming at the mouth and she went away. After she went back her husband came. She never had a doctor to treat her for the coughing spells. A doctor was to see her in April. She was sick in childbed.
                                                                                                                                                      Palace (X) Davenport 

Ella Harp being sworn says: Little Palace came to my house yesterday evening about good dusk and asked me to come down to her house and stay for her mother was having one of them coughing spells. I went but didn’t go any further than the corner of the house. Little Palace said she was breathing her last and I turned around and went back home and got a light. When I got back I didn’t go closer than the corner of the house. Abe Harp, my husband, took the light. I sat at the corner of the house. Old Palace told me she had coughing spells. I never saw her have them. She said nothing about them being bad.                                                                                                                      Ella (X) Harp

Abe Harp being sworn says: When I went to Palace Davenport’s house last night I stopped at the corner of the house until the white people got down there. Then we all went up to Palace together. She was dead. White foam was coming from her mouth.                                                                                                                           Abe (X) Harp

W. G. Houseal being sworn says:  I have examined the dead body of Palace Davenport. In my opinion her death was caused by congestion of the lungs and heart failure.                                                                       W. G. Houseal MD


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at J. C. Lane’s place in Newberry County the 22nd day of July A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Edy Caldwell (colored child) then and there being dead by the oaths of J. C. Lane, Spencer Rutherford, Elias Simms, Levi Kibler, Ervin Maffett, Thomas Folk, William Hogg, Bug Wood, Henry Gray, Jeff Ruff, John Harmon, Joe Adams being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Edy Caldwell came to her death upon their oaths do say that the said Edy Caldwell came to her death on Mr. J. C. Lane’s place from accidental burning on July 22nd 1893. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

J. C. Lane Foreman, Spencer (X) Rutherford, Elias (X) Simms, Levi (X) Kibler, I. H. Maffett, T. W. Folk, William (X)  Hogg, Bug (X) Wood, Henry (X) Gray, Jeff (X) Ruff, J. (X) Harmon, J. H. Adams

EVIDENCE

Alice Keitt being sworn says: I came down to Miss Lizzie Lane’s after a smoothing iron. She did not have one so I went up to James Caldwell to get one and when I got there I found the child on fire and then I ran and told Joe Collins to come and outen it and then I went after the child’s mother. The fire was all around it when I saw it. Did not try to put out the fire and was too scared. It was laying out in the porch. It was not crying. It was not making any fuss at all. I think it was dead. Do not know how it caught fire. Its mother said she was going up to Miss Lizzie Kibler’s. Did not see any fire anywhere – only that which was burning the child. When I saw her mother she had not got to Mrs. Kibler’s. She asked me if it was burned much. Did not see anyone at the house. She did not say how she thought it caught fire. Do not know where its father was. It looked like its feet burned first. Do not know how long after I left the child burning till someone else came. Do not know how old the child was. Its mother says she left fire in the yard but I don’t know.                                                                                                                                                               Alice Keitt

Bettie Caldwell being sworn says:

I do not know how it got burnt. I went up to Mrs. Kibler’s after my dress. Before I got there Jane Gallman called me and told me my baby was dead. I told her no, there isn’t anything the matter with it. She said it was burnt up. I asked her how she knew and she said Alice Keitt said it was burnt up. She said there wasn’t anyone there but the child. When I got home I found it dead. I smoke but was not smoking when I left. I had my pipe in my pocket. Have not smoked any since this morning. The palate was made about 12 o’clock but did not make it myself. My nurse made it. The child had been lying on the palate about a half hour before I left. It was asleep when I left. I did not lay it down but my nurse did. I stopped at Mrs. Dickert’s a few minutes but was not smoking but had my pipe in my hand.  I lit my pipe this morning with a coal of fire. My husband was at town. He went before 12 o’clock and I went direct from the house. It was about a quarter of an hour after I left till I heard it was on fire. I have no idea how my child caught (fire). I sent my nurse to the well but she did not come back to the house while I was there. I was gone when I heard it. I turned and ran all the way back. I am certain there was no fire about it except what was in the house and that was around the pot in the yard. I had the fire in the yard washing. I was not in the habit of washing in the yard. The reason I washed here today was because I did not have much to wash and had nearby water, enough at the house to wash with. She has been left alone before.                                                                                                                                                                Bettie (X) Caldwell

Joe Collins being sworn says:

When I was down to the well Alice Keitt came running and told me to come and outen the child. It was on fire when I got there. The chaps had a bucket of water. I poured it on the child and put it out. The child was not quite dead when I got there. There was fire in the house and yard. Wind was blowing right smart. All the clothes were pretty well burned off. I think the child could have caught from either place, house or yard. There was no wood around the pot. There was a little on the fire in the house. There was some fire under the house and I put it out. The palate was made of a quilt. It was mostly burned up. Do not know whether the fire under the house came from the palate or pot but do not think the fire under the house was enough to have set the palate on fire. I think it caught at the child’s feet. When I poured the water on the child it moved a little.                                                                                                Joe (X) Collins

William Hogg being sworn says:

I was at Mr. Lane’s when I heard that the child was on fire. Alice Keitt told me. I came up to the house to see about it. I found it with fire all around it with nearly everything burned off. Uncle Joe Collins kicked off the old quilt that was burning in the piazza. I did not do anything to it. I did not see any fire anywhere else except in the house. Did not know there was any pot in the yard. I do not think it caught from the pot. I think its mother dropped fire from her pipe on the quilt before she left. Do not think the wind could have blown the fire from the pot onto the palate where the child was lying. I seen a little fire under the house but it came from the quilt. When I got there the child had been pulled off the palate but no water had been poured on it. Old Uncle Joe Collins poured water on it and outened it. There was enough palate left to be in a blaze. When I got there I think it was still alive for when the water was poured on it  - it made 2 or 3 efforts to catch its breath. The wind was blowing about like it is now, coming about west. This was about 3 or 4 o’clock. I think it must have been on fire about a half hour. It was just burned into a coal. I think the palate and clothing, which was on, was sufficient to keep up the fire enough to burn it just like it is. The quilt, which it was lying on, was folded about four times. It had a pillow under its head. I do not think the wind caused the burning. Unless it was a whirl wind – it might have done it.                                                                                            William (X) Hogg

Carrie Caldwell being sworn says: I did not see the child get burned. Do not know how it got on fire. Alice Keitt told me later it was on fire. I was at Aunt Sallie’s house when she told me. I went home when she told me. When I got there she was almost burned up and I rolled her off the palate and Joe Collins poured some water on her. I was not at home when Bettie left. I did not see any smoke around the pot. She was not smoking when I left. Bettie had sent me to the well for water before she left home. Drayton Gist was at the well when I got there. He and I went off together. He had a bucket too. Both of us went after water. I built the fire under the pot and put pinewood on the fire. The pot did not boil. I put the child on the palate. It was asleep. I had not been at the well long. I did not see Bettie go off. Did not hear her call me. She was starching when I left. I was not smoking while starching. I was the first one saw it after Alice Keitt. The quilt had been on the piazza all day. I did not make the palate but it did not stay out all night, but do not know who put it there. I got the fire out of the house to make a fire around the pot. The quilt was out there then. The baby had not been out in the piazza till Bettie went off.                                                                                 Carrie (X) Caldwell

J. H. McCullough being sworn says:  This is to certify that I have examined the body of Edy Caldwell and find that she came to her death from a burn inflicted on her chest, abdomen, legs and arms.                    J. H. McCullough MD  Newberry County SC July 22, 1893


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Y. Y. Thompson’s place in Newberry County the 29th day of July A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Fed Bailey then and there being dead by the oaths of J. S. Ruff, John Spence, Sim Price, Charles Rutherford, Stephen Charles, Jacob Glenn, J. Y. Thompson, W. C. Bowles, Preston Brooks, Fred Morgan, Butler Rutherford, Willie Ruff being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Fed Bailey came to his death upon their oaths do say that the said Fed Bailey came to his death from natural causes. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

John S. Ruff Foreman, J. C. Spence, S. J. D. Price, Charlie (X) Rutherford, Stephen (X) Charles, Jacob (X) Glenn, J. Y. Thompson, W. C. Bowles, P. L. Brooks, Fred (X) Morgan, Butler (X) Rutherford, Willie (X) Ruff

EVIDENCE

Joseph Pinney being sworn says: About 12 o’clock at night Fed Bailey was bad off but seemed to change for the better. Saw him then again about one hour before day. Was sitting up but said he felt bad but well enough for his uncle to go home. Saw him again at daybreak and found him half lying in bed with feet on the floor in a moist sweat – but on shaking him failed to arouse and answer. Was still warm at this time. Quit work four weeks ago but has been lingering for three months. Has had a cough and cold during this three months. Was doing as well as usual yesterday up to 12 o’clock. Bowels began running off about 4 in the afternoon every 2 or 3 minutes. Feet has swollen about 8 days. Hands and feet have swelled since last Friday July 21, 1893.        Joseph (X) Pinney
James H. McIntosh being sworn says: I have viewed the body of Fed Bailey and apparently he came to his death from natural causes due to some long constitutional disease and from conversation with his relatives and friends and also with Dr. Brown. I believe this to have been consumption. There is no evidence of any foul play- his death being due to the above natural causes, consumption.                                                                                   J. H. McIntosh MD

State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Newberry Court House in Newberry County the 16th day of October A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Thomas Williams then and there being dead by the oaths of M. J. Scott, W. P. Bedenbaugh, Will Kibler, Will Watts, Patts Miller, Will Eddy, Frank Wearn, Buck Glascow, K. L. Kibler, Robert Smith, John Aldrich, B. B. Davis being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Thomas Williams came to his death upon their oaths do say that the said Thomas Williams came to his death in Newberry SC on the October 15th from a pistol shot wound received Saturday night on October 124th on P.N. Livingston’s place in Newberry County. Pistol fired by the hand of Reuben Glenn. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

M. J. Scott Foreman of Jury, W. P. Bedenbaugh, William Kibler, J. W. Watts, J. G. Miller, W. H. Eddy, G. F. Wearn, J. B. Glascow, R. L. Kibler, R. G. Smith, J. P. Aldrich, B. B. Davis

EVIDENCE

Illinoise Spearman being sworn says: On Saturday night October 14th I was at the frolic on P. N. Livingston’s place. Reuben Glenn was betting on Jess Jones’ chucks. Reuben won a dollar from Jess and Jess would not give it to him. Reuben told him he could not shake  (Roll the dice?) anymore. Jess got up and hit Reuben with a little stick. Jess ran and Reuben shot at him twice. Tom Williams ran out of the door, the front door and said, “Reuben, don’t start any fuss here”, and then went walking up to him. Reuben said, “Get back, don’t walk up on me or I will shoot you”. Tom said, “No, I don’t believe you will shoot me” and went walking on up to him.  Reuben cocked his pistol and pointed it at him. Tom knocked his pistol around on his left side and when he knocked it around he broke and ran. Reuben snapped his pistol and it did not fire. Tom turned to go in the door. He was shot in the left side. Reuben was forty feet about from Tom when he fired the fatal shot. Reuben walked on down the road and shot twice more towards the creek. One of the fellows told Reuben to shoot Tom but I don’t know who it was. I would know him if I would see him. After Tom was shot he went into the house and laid down. He said he was shot by the boy and didn’t (believe?) that he would get over it. He asked for a doctor. When Reuben shot the last time he went down the road towards the creek. I am no kin to any of the parties. I was not engaged in the game. Tom Williams had no pistol – nothing but a stick. Tom Williams gave the supper and said he did not want it broke up.                                                                                            Illinoise (X) Spearman

Reuben Glenn’s pistol was a Smith & Wesson. Tom Williams died Sunday night at 12 o’clock.

Frank Lindsay being sworn says: I was at the frolic Saturday night on P. N. Livingston’s place in Newberry County SC. Tom Williams and Ike Glenn gave the supper. The difficulty was after supper about 10 or 11 o’clock. When the fuss began I was in the crowds and when a pistol fired I ran down through the pines and when I got back everything was over. I heard no threat before the pistol was fired. Tom Williams was hauled into town Saturday night about 3 am in a wagon. I live on the P. N. Livingston place near the scene of the difficulty.                    Frank (X) Lindsay

Dave Johnson being sworn says: I was in the house at the supper when the fuss began. When I found out that man Tom Williams was shot he was down on the floor hollering ‘Oh Lord’. I don’t know who did the shooting. I came out the house and (went) home.                                                                                                              Dave (X) Johnson

Reid Lark being sworn says: Saturday night I was at the frolic at the house on P. N. Livingston’s place. I don’t know anything about the first starting of the fuss. I was in the house where dancing was going on. When I stepped outside the door I saw people running and heard somebody say ‘Shoot him’. Then I heard a pistol fire. I went on back in the house. I didn’t go when the fuss was going on. I don’t know who shot the pistol. I heard two pistol shots. Tom Williams ran into the house and said, “Oh Lord, I am shot”, and fell in the door. I heard Tom Williams say that Reuben Glenn shot him.                                                                                                                                                 Reid (X) Lark

Jesse Jones being sworn says: I was at the frolic at P.N. Livingston’s place Saturday night. The fuss began between me and Reuben Glenn. I owed Reuben a dollar. I had borrowed a dollar from him. We had been on bad terms for about two weeks and he seemed to be about half drunk and cursed me for a G_ D_ son of a b__. Told me if I didn’t pay him he was going to wash my G_ D_ mouth. He said he came out there to kill a Negro anyhow and would just aslease (as easily?) kill me as anybody.  I told him he was not the best man there was in the world. That he had all the boys scared of (him). He did not win a dollar from me. We were not throwing dice out there. I did not have a dice cup. Some of the boys had dice but I did not see anybody shaking dice not did I shake any. I did not pick up any money of Reuben’s. He pulled his pistol out and raised it up. I hit him with a little walking stick not big enough to kill him. I hit him to keep him from shooting me. When I hit him I ran out and he shot at me twice.  He didn’t hit me. This is all I know. I don’t know who shot Tom Williams. I heard a pistol shot when I was about a quarter of a mile away off.                                                                                                                                                                                     Jesse Jones

Elliot James being sworn says:  I was at the frolic Saturday night. I was in the house and was beating straws for the fiddler where dancing was going on. Tom Williams was standing by the fire. I heard a pistol fire twice out of doors. I and Tom Williams and some others run out to see what was the matter. Tom asked Reuben Glenn what was the matter. I didn’t hear Reuben’s answer. I heard Tom Williams say to him, “We don’t want to have any fuss out here tonight Reuben”. Reuben then asked Tom was he a friend to him. Tom Williams said, “Yes, I am a friend to you. Now you be quiet. We don’t want to have any fuss”. About that time about 8 or 9 young men went walking up towards him. If they had any pistol I didn’t know it. I thought they were for making peace and restoring quiet. Reuben Glenn said “Don’t nobody come near me for I will shoot you”. Tom Williams was nearer to him then than anyone else. Then Reuben said “You don’t believe I will shoot you do you”. Tom Williams said, “No, I don’t believe you will do what you said”. Then Reuben Glenn pointed his pistol at Tom Williams. Tom Williams then struck at him with a stick. Tom Williams struck him or the pistol. Reuben ran backwards and snapped his pistol twice. Two young men were standing behind Reuben Glenn. I don’t know who they were. I heard someone say, “Shoot him. If your pistol don’t fire I have one that will”. I don’t know who said that. I thought Reuben aimed to shoot somebody and I stepped about 10 steps to the left, NW. Then while I was making the move the pistol fired. It was more than half a minute after the pistol snapped twice until the pistol fired. It gave about ten or twelve men time to get into the house. Tom Williams was behind them all except me. I was standing at the NW corner of the house. I went into the house and heard the woman crying who was his wife and found out then that Tom Williams was shot. His wife pulled up his clothes and I saw the wound in his left side. I heard Tom Williams say Reuben Glenn shot him. After Reuben shot he went down the road towards the creek accompanied by several others whose names I don’t know. A pistol fired a couple of times then.  I saw no dice that night nor any card playing. I saw Tom Williams have nothing but a small stick.                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Elliot James


W. G. Houseal being sworn says: I made a post mortem examination today October 16th of the body of Thomas Williams. His death was caused by a pistol shot wound entering the body on the left side three inches above the crest of his ileum in the axillary line. The ball gauged obliquely upwards piercing the __ colon and lodging in the liver.
                                                                                                                                                      W. G. Houseal MD

Tom Williams, colored, was fatally shot by Reuben Glenn, colored, page 3, column 3, Newberry Observer, 10/18/1893


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Thomas F. Harmon’s place in Newberry County the 16th day of October A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Reuben E. Gauntt then and there being dead by the oaths of Charles S. Paysinger, George Spearman, John Kinard, Thomas Hamlin, John Havird, George Gruber, Lawson Babb, Lige Kinard, Sherman Coleman, Lige Robinson, J. Henry Caldwell, W. G. Houseal being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Reuben E. Gauntt came to his death upon their oaths do say that the said Reuben E. Gauntt came to his death on Mr. Thomas Harmon’s place in Newberry SC on the October 16th  1893 from natural causes. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned. 

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County
Charles S. Paysinger Foreman of Jury, George (X) Spearman, John (X) Kinard, Thomas (X) Hamlin, John R. (X) Havird, George (X) Gruber, L. Babb, Lige (X) Kinard, Sherman (X) Coleman, Lige (X) Robinson, J. H. Caldwell, W. G. Houseal

EVIDENCE

Christina Ann Gauntt being sworn says: I am the wife of Reuben E. Gauntt. We live on Mr. Thomas F. Harmon’s place in Newberry County SC. Reuben E. Gauntt died about 4 o’clock today Oct 16, 1893. He was picking cotton. I found him dead. He was on his knees and elbows with his face on the ground. I laid my hand on his heart but found it was not beating. I turned him over on his back as he is now lying. He had a spell last night and one today before dinner. When he had those spells his heart beat fast, not much pulse at his wrist and the blood would fly to his head and his face would turn black. I saw him picking cotton just after dinner about 3 o’clock.

                                                                                                                                                      Christina (X) Ann Gauntt
Susan Kinard being sworn says: Mr. Reuben Gauntt was picking cotton today. I saw him picking cotton on the last row he picked. This was not long before his death. I heard his wife scream and came to see what was the matter. When I saw him he was lying just like he is now. I was picking cotton just up on the hill. I could see him picking cotton from where I was picking.                                                                                                                                Susan (X) Kinard

W. G. Houseal being sworn says: I have made a postmortem examination of Reuben E. Gauntt. His death was caused by organic heart disease.                                                                                                                   W. G. Houseal MD

Reuben E. Gauntt, 60 years old, died 10/16/1893. He lived 3 miles from town on the Lindsay Bridge Rd. on the Thomas F. Harmon Plantation.  He was a Yankee soldier who came to Newberry after the war. Newberry Observer


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at C. W. Buford’s place in Newberry County the 9th day of November A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Pleas Suber (colored) then and there being dead by the oaths of C. W. Buford, William Caldwell, Calvin Gilliam, Milton Saunders, Joe Smith, Will Buford, J. O. Bishop, Bill Miller, William Furguson, Newton Wilson, John Bonds, Andrew Horton being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Pleas Suber came to his death upon their oaths do say that the said Pleas Suber came to his death by being accidentally run between a cog wheel and trundle head at Mr. C. W. Buford’s gin on the 8th day of November 1893.  In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

C. W. Buford Foreman of the jury, W. L. Caldwell, Calvin (X) Gilliam, Milton (X) Saunders, Joe (X) Smith, W. L. (X) Buford, J. O. Bishop, Bill (X) Miller, William Furguson, Newton (X) Wilson, John (X) Bonds, Andrew (X) Horton.                                                       
                                                                                          EVIDENCE

William Douvard being sworn says: While I was at work at Mr. Buford’s gin on November 8th Pleas Suber came to the gin and he was playing on the cog wheel. I told him to get down and leave. After I told him Howard Young told him to leave also. I heard him holler. I saw him fall from the wheel. When he fell I turned my back and called Andrew Horton who was ‘fading’ the gin.                                                                                                                       William (X) Douvard

Howard Young being sworn says: I and Pleas Suber were sitting on the cogwheel. I did not see the wheel catch him. I heard him holler. I saw him fall.                                                                                                       Howard (X) Young

J. P. Johnson being sworn says: Being a practicing physician (I) have carefully examined the dead body of Pleasant Suber and find that by accident has been run over by a horse plow passing between the cog wheel and trundle head, crushing his head and causing the brain to exude; both eyes to protrude from their sockets. Also passing over the right shoulder and arm causing a compound fracture of the same, which undoubtedly caused his death.
                                                                                                                                                      J. P. Peterson MD

Pleasant Suber, colored, 11 years old, got his head caught between a cogwheel and tunnel head of an old-fashioned horse powered gin. An inquest was held. Newberry Observer, 11/15/1893


 State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at E. R. Hipp’s place in Town of Newberry in Newberry County the 15th day of November A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Janie Samantha Hall (10 months old, colored) then and there being dead by the oaths of W. F. Ewart, J. L. Kenerly, Robert Hatton, Jeff West, J. A. Eddy, G. F. Smith, O. H. Duncan, J. A. Bouknight, W.A. McFall, B. B. Davis, A. M. Teague, Stout Noland being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Janie Samantha Hall came to her death upon their oaths do say that the said Janie Samantha Hall came to her death from the  accidental administration of opium given probably without evil intentions.  In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

William F. Ewart Foreman of the jury, J. L. Kenerly, R. H. Hatton, J. H. West, J. A. Eddy, G. F. Smith, O. H. Duncan, J. M. Bouknight, W. A. McFall, B. B. Davis, A. M. Teague, G. S. Noland

EVIDENCE

Harriet Hall being sworn testifies that she left baby in bed at half past six in the morning. Child had awakened at this time and had gone back to sleep. Child had seemed well during the night and had nursed as usual. Left the child in bed and apparently well when she went to her work. Child had been a little sick during the previous week from cold but had taken no medicine since Saturday when she had given her some croup syrup oil. Left the child in care of her sister. Had had a bottle of laudanum in bed the night before and this was left in the bed in the morning with the child.  About 10 o’clock her sister came to her and told her the baby was dying and on getting home found the baby insensible and lying on a neighbor’s lap. The laudanum bottle was under the mattress and as far as she can tell no laudanum was missing from the bottle. Bottle was stopped up.                                                                            Harriet Hall

Lucy Gary being sworn testifies: Baby slept an hour after mother left. Then woke up. Cried a little. She took the child out of bed and put it on the floor and it vomited about a teacupful of watery stuff. She then picked it up and rocked it. It went back to sleep and never awakened afterwards. Gave the baby no food or medicine. When she put it in the cradle it grunted and stretched so that she became frightened and called in a woman who said it was dying. She had not left the house but had been with the baby all the time. Laudanum bottle was lying in bed with the baby but was stopped up.                                                                                                                                                           Lucy (X) Gary

Martha Jones being sworn says: Lucy Gary called her in about half past nine to the baby. Baby was groaning and appeared to be dreaming. Shook it well but could not wake it up. Told Lucy to go and call the mother at once. The child was perfectly limber when she picked it up. It opened its eyes a little but never ‘roused’ it at all.

                                                                                                                                                      Martha (X) Jones

Emma Lewis being sworn says:  Martha Jones called her to come in and see the baby and see if she could tell what was the matter with it. Baby was in the cradle and was apparently deeply asleep. Could not arouse it. She picked and held it till Harriet Eddington came in and took it from her. Her baby was breathing deeply. Could smell no laudanum about the child.                                                                                                                                                      Emma (X) Lewis

Harriet Eddington being sworn says: Martha Jones sent her here and found the baby in Emma Lewis lap. Took it but could not arouse it. Had it till its mother got here. Could find out nothing as to what was the matter with it.

                                                                                                                                                      Harriet (X) Eddington

J. H. McIntosh being sworn says: Dr. McIntosh Sr. first reached the child about half past ten o’clock and found the child deeply under opium. Could not arouse it at all. Dr. McIntosh Jr. reached her at half past eleven and at the time the baby was deeply under opium and was dying. Used all the usual remedies but the child never aroused and died at 6:10 pm from opium poisoning.                                                                                                          J. H. McIntosh MD

Harriet Hall, colored, lost a 10-month-old child to an overdose of laudanum. Newberry Observer, 11/15/1893


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at the residence of J. S. Bedenbaugh near Prosperity in Newberry County the 16th day of November A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Pettus Benjamin Bedenbaugh then and there being dead by the oaths of Luther Fellers, Mack Dominick, John McCullough, George Cook, John Kinard, Pink Wicker, Monroe Wicker, Jeff Wicker, Ben Cook, Dan Cook, George Long, J. L. McCullough being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Pettus Benjamin Bedenbaugh came to his death upon their oaths do say that the death of the said Pettus Benjamin Bedenbaugh was caused by burns of accidental origin and that the said Pettus Benjamin Bedenbaugh in matter and form aforesaid came to his death by misfortune or accident. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County           

Luther Fellers Foreman of the jury, A. M. Dominick, J. D. McCullough, G. A. Cook, J. D. Kinard, H. P. Wicker, J. M. Wicker, S. J. Wicker, J. B. Cook, D. V. Cook, George A. Long, James L. McCullough       

               EVIDENCE

John S. Bedenbaugh being sworn testifies: I am the father of Pettus Benjamin Bedenbaugh. I was in (my) lot doing my feeding when a Negro woman called to me to come to the house. On getting here I found the child at the dining room door with its clothes on fire. I caught it in my arms and put out the fire. Brought it into the house and put it to bed and went for Dr. Hunter. Child was conscious at this time but became unconscious after 9 o’clock and died about 6 am the next morning November 16, 1893. I was with the child previous to going to the lot and had only left it about ten minutes.                                                                                                                                                 John S. Bedenbaugh

Alice Jackson being sworn says: Was about 200 yards from the house gathering wood when looking up I saw Pettus Benjamin Bedenbaugh running up and down the back piazza with his clothes all on fire. Throwed down my wood and ran up through the cotton patch to the house and met Mr. Bedenbaugh who ran up the steps and picked up the child and tried to put out the fire. Then took the baby and ran for Mr. Bedenbaugh’s mother who lives near.
                                                                                                                                                      Alice (X) Jackson

James H. McIntosh being duly sworn testifies: I have examined and viewed the body of Pettus Benjamin Bedenbaugh and find that he has on his  (body) burns of sufficient extent and depth to have caused death and that in my opinion his death was caused by his burns and nothing else. The burns cover more (than) one half of the body of the child.                                                                                                                                                        James H. McIntosh MD

John S. Bedenbaugh’s 3-year-old child died from burns obtained by playing too near the fireplace. Newberry Observer, 11/22/1893


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Helena in Newberry County the 17th day of November A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Nellie Bluford then and there being dead by the oaths of James F. Glenn, W. D. Diver, W. A. Pitts, L. W. Jones, R. H. Greneker Jr., R. H. Greneker Sr., Sim Counts, Jesse Wilson, Jim Scott, John Williams, George Gary, Richard Sligh being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Nellie Bluford came to her death upon their oaths do say that she came to her death from accidental burning. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

James F. Glenn Foreman of the jury, W. D. Diver, W. A. Pitts, L. W. Jones, R. H. Greneker Jr., R. H. Greneker Sr., Sim (X) Counts, Jesse  (X) Wilson, Jim  (X) Scott, John  (X) Williams, George  (X) Gary, Richard  (X) Sligh

EVIDENCE

Ella Bluford being duly sworn says: I am the mother of Nellie Bluford. There was no one with Nellie when she was burned. She was in my room in my mother’s house alone. There was some fire in the fireplace when I left her. The first I knew of her burning was when I heard her hollering. When I heard her cry I came. She was sitting on the floor in front of the fire when I first saw her. The broom was lying by her and it was burning. Her clothes were nearly all burnt off when I saw her. I got a bucket of water and threw on her and put the fire out. I called Emmeline Counts to help me. I was pulling the burnt clothes off when Mrs. Counts came in. I then gave the child to her. I was not accustomed to leave the child alone in the room. I had been out a good while when I heard the child cry. I left the child in the hall. My cousin, Lilla Connor, was in the house when I left. Tiller had her baby with her.

                                                                                                                                                      Ella Bluford

Emmeline Counts being duly sworn says: I was at home when the child caught fire. A little boy called me. When I got here Ella Bluford was taking the clothes off the child. I took the child from her and sat down and held it and put it in the bed. I did not do anything for it. I did not know what to do. Ella had poured water on it. The clothes were nearly all burnt. Ella had gotten them off when I got here.                                                                         Emmeline (X) Counts

This certifies that Nellie Bluford came to her death from the effects of a burn.                            J. M. Kibler MD

Ella Bluford, colored, lost her 2-year-old child to burns obtained when the child was playing with a broom at the fireplace. Newberry Observer, 11/22/1893


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at place of estate of Dr. D. W. Patton in Newberry County the 22nd day of November A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of an infant of Sallie Champion then and there being dead by the oaths of John L. McKittrick, M. W. Wheeler, N.P. Abrams, W. A. Workman, L. B. Harmon, C. W. Senn, J. M. Workman Jr., J. C. DeHart, W. F. Chappell, D. Holland, W. Wallingsee, J. R. Sligh being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said infant came to her death upon their oaths do say that the infant of Sallie Champion was born dead on Dr. D. W. Patton’s place in Newberry County November 16, 1893. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County           

John L. McKittrick Foreman, M. W. Wheeler, N.P. Abrams, W. A. Workman, L. B. Harmon, C. W. Senn, J. M. Workman Jr., J. C. DeHart, W. F. Chappell, D. E. Holland, W. V. Wallingsee, J. R. Sligh      

               EVIDENCE

Rhody Byrd being sworn says: Mr. Champion came after me on Thursday night November 16, 1893. He said Mrs. Jane, his wife, and Miss Sallie, his daughter, were very bad off. I told him I couldn’t go. He said yes, you must. He offered me his mule to ride if I would go. I live about two miles from Mr. Champion’s. He came for me about suppertime 7 o’clock. It was 8 o’clock when I got to Mr. Champion’s. My old mother in law came with me. We walked. Her name is Louisa Byrd. He said Sallie was sick. She had lost her monthlies about 10 months and a little had just come and that was what was the matter with her. Said she had eaten a right heavy bite of turnips at dinner and that may have colicked her some. Sallie kept getting in and out of the bed. She would come to the fireplace and sit in the rocking chair. Her mother and father told her and kept telling her she would ruin herself forever if she didn’t quit worrying herself. She began to holler for the mug (chamber pot). After having the chamber (Pot) she would do nothing but pass a little water. After awhile she said she wanted Dr. Smith. Her papa said that Dr. Smith could do no more than what she was doing. She kept calling for the doctor and her father went after him. I thought she was having a baby and went to assist her by holding her by the shoulders. Her mother kept after her to get up. Sallie said she couldn’t get up. She called for some rags. Her mother got some and handed them to her. She wiped under her gown. Her hands were bloody when she took them out. All this time she was on the mug (Chamber pot). When I went to help her she was standing up against the bed. She soon called for the chamber and sat on it. When I raised her up from the mug she looked down and said, “What is that?” The cord was hanging from her. She had the chamber and the contents were covered with the rags she had. The baby didn’t cry. I smelled the odor, like a newborn baby but heard no cry. I fixed her in the bed and Sallie began to tease me to carry out the mug. Finally she began to cry. Said she wanted the mug carried out before her father came. Mrs. Jane got a candle and I took the mug and set (it) behind the stove room door. Mrs. Jane held the candle close and I took off the rags one by one till I came to the baby. She said, “Aunt Rhody, what is that?” I said, “A baby”. She said Lord have mercy upon me –what shall I do – I have lost all of my character and principal and nobody will have anything to do with me. When Mrs. Jane got most back to the middle door she said, “Aunt Rhody, that child denied that thing to me about 5 minutes before Mr. Champion went after you. I think Dr. Smith came about 12 o’clock. The clock had struck 11 before the child was born. I saw her before the child was born and thought she was pregnant. It was common talk that she was pregnant. Dr. Smith said the time was faster than his.                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Rhody (X) Byrd

D. Champion being sworn says: I am the father of Sallie Champion. She denied being pregnant all the time. I think she was made to do it by J. D. Amick. Last Thursday evening before sundown when I came to the house Sally was complaining and said she had the colic. About dark I went after Rhody Byrd. When I came back she was complaining so she said she wanted me to go after Dr. Smith. I went after him. I thought she was pretty bad off. I asked the doctor after we had got a little piece from his house to ride on fast as I was riding a mule and he could get home before I could. Dr. said he got to my house 25 minutes before me. When we got there they said the child was born. Dr. Smith was the first to tell me about it. The rest told me about it afterwards. I didn’t know what was the matter with Sallie when I went after Rhody Byrd. J. D. Amick was at my house a day or two before the child was born. I don’t think my wife knew that Sallie was pregnant. When I came Rhody or the doctor or both told me the baby was at the storehouse door with a tub turned over it.                                                                                                                               D. (X) Champion

Doctor Van Smith being sworn says:  Mr. Champion came to my house last Wednesday or Thursday night between 10 and 11 o’clock. I got to his house at 12 o’clock. Said he had a very sick child. He wanted me to come and see. Said she was suffering with something like colic. I came on ahead of Mr. Champion and reached his house first about one half hour before him. I found Miss Sallie in bed and asked what was the matter. Mrs. Champion said, “Ask Rhody, she knows better than I do”. I asked Rhody. She said, “I don’t know. She is just sick”. Rhody went into the piazza. I followed and asked what is the matter here. Where is that baby. She said in a whisper, “It is out yonder in the yard, but they don’t want anybody to know it.” I told her I must see it. She led the way and I examined it. I found it in a chamber – dead. I told them it must be taken out and washed and dressed which was done. When I first went in and asked Sallie what was the matter she said her back hurt. I asked to examine her. She objected. She asked me to give her something to make her rest. I refused and insisted on an examination to which she finally consented. When I made an examination I delivered her of an afterbirth (placenta). When I left she asked me not to say anything about it. I made no reply except to ask her whose child that was. She said, “It is not the one you think it is”. I asked whose I thought it was. She refused to say whose it was. She said it was not J. D. Amick. I found the child in the chamber with its head underneath - the umbilical cord was lying loosely on top of the child. My opinion is the child was born that way in the chamber. It certainly could not have lived with its head in fluid as I found it. The chamber was full of bloody fluid. The child being in it. The whole child was in it doubled in the chamber a small portion of the thigh was out of the fluid but very small. It was my opinion that the child had never breathed. I think that it was a fully developed child. My opinion is the child could have been born in the chamber and in the position I found it – very easily. My reason for saying it had not breathed is - its mouth was filled with mucus and not the fluid of the chamber.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Van Smith

W. G. Houseal being sworn says: I examined an infant of Sallie Champion and made a dissection. I found the lungs non-inflated and stomach empty. It had never breathed.                                                  W.G. Houseal MD  


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at G. Burt Reagin’s place in Newberry County the 27th day of November A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of G. Burt Reagin then and there being dead by the oaths of John R. Spearman, E. M. Evans, L. F. Hendrix, Albert Schroder, W. H. Long, D. Pink Bouknight, E. H. Longshore, John W. Davenport, F.S. Paysinger, John S. Hutchison, L. C. Longshore being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said G. Burt Reagin came to his death upon their oaths do say that the said G. Burt Reagin came to his death by his own hand during an attack of mental aberration at his place in Newberry County on Nov 27, 1893.  In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

J. R. Spearman Foreman, E. M. Evans, L. F. Hendrix, Albert Schroder, W. H. Long, D. P.  Bouknight, Levy F. Longshore, John W. Davenport, F. S. Paysinger, J. S. Hutchison, E. H. Longshore, L. C. Longshore

EVIDENCE

Mattie Piester being sworn says: I live on Mr. Burt Reagin’s place. I saw Mr. Burt Reagin coming through the cow lot this morning November 27, 1893 when I was straining milk. It was before sun up. Mrs. Janie asked me if I saw him. I told her I saw him go behind the smoke house. After I brought the milk in the house I went home. Mrs. Janie called me. I and Joe Piester came to the house. We met Mrs. Janie Reagin between the house and well. She said she believed Mr. Reagin was dead as he had cut his throat. I and Mrs. Reagin and Mars Reagin then went and looked at Mr. Reagin’s body. Mr. Reagin was dead. I was so struck that I don’t know the position of the body.    Mattie (X) Piester

Mrs. Janie Reagin being sworn says:  I am Mr. G. B. Reagin’s wife. I saw Mr. Reagin last this morning sitting by the fire. When I went to get breakfast I rang the breakfast bell and he didn’t come and I rang again and he didn’t come. I went to the lot and he was not there. Marcee found him by the meat house dead. Mr. Reagin went out on the back porch yesterday. Came in with a wine glass. I asked him what he had been taking. He said he had a glass half full of Laudanum and touched it to his lips but for the sake of me and Marcee he would not take it. I saw a razor case that was sent to the house. I would not know his razor or case if I would see it.                                      Janie Reagin

L.F. Longshore being sworn says: I and Mr. Fred Long and one or two others more found Mr. G. B. Reagin dead body by his meat house this morning, November 27, 1893. His throat was cut. I searched his pockets and out of his right hand pocket I got a razor case, pocketknife, pocket book. A razor was lying three feet from him open with blood on it.

                                                                                                                                                      Levi F. Longshore

W. G. Houseal being sworn says: I examined the dead body of G. B. Reagin today November 27, 1893. His death was caused by an incised wound of the neck made by some sharp instrument. Two cuts were made and the windpipe and jugular veins were severed.                                                                                                 W. G. Houseal MD

Reagin, G. B. married to Janie Counts, both of Newberry on 12/1878 by Rev. J. A. Sligh. Newberry Herald 12/25/1878


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Spence’s place in Newberry County the 4th day of December A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Rosella Bouknight (colored) then and there being dead by the oaths of W. W. Willingham, Luther S. Darby, Grant Porter, Sam Fair, Newton Darby, Nath Moseley, Luther Brown, Pink Porter, George Jackson, Green Davenport, Calvin Span, Lewis Hunter being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Rosella Bouknight came to her death upon their oaths do say that the said Rosella Bouknight came to her death by accidental burning on December 4, 1893 on the Spence place in Newberry County.  In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

W. W. Willingham Foreman, Luther S. Darby, Grant Porter, Sam (X) Fair, Newton  (X) Darby, Nath  (X) Moseley, Luther  (X) Brown, Pink  (X) Porter, George (X) Jackson, Green  (X) Davenport, Calvin (X) Span, Lewis  (X) Hunter

EVIDENCE

James Bridges being sworn says: I live on Brown & Moseley’s place half a mile from the Spence place. I had the wagon going after wood today December 4,1893. I saw a fire and knew it was Lee Bouknight’s house. I stopped the wagon and unhitched the mules and passed Abram Hartie’s and hollered fire! fire! I came on in a hurry. When I got to the house I found Lee’s wife and baby in the cotton patch on fire about 25 yards off. I saw Lee Bouknight on fire. I pulled his vest off and threw it aside and outened the fire from him. About that time Charlotte Span and Charlotte Bouknight came up screaming. It was between 2 and 3 o’clock when I saw the house on fire and went up. I didn’t see the child Rosella till the house was burnt down nor the other child. Lee said he had heated a rock and wrapped some old rags around it and put it at his wife’s feet and the bedclothes caught on fire. He put the bed on the floor and tried to put it out but could not. He said he could not get the children out.                                                                                         James (X) Bridges

W. G. Houseal being sworn says: I examined the dead body of Rosella Bouknight. Her death was caused by being burned. Her body being burned to a crisp.                                                                                          W. G. Houseal MD


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Spence’s place in Newberry County the 4th day of December A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of the infant of Lee Bouknight (colored) then and there being dead by the oaths of W. W. Willingham, Luther S. Darby, Grant Porter, Sam Fair, Newton Darby, Nath Moseley, Luther Brown, Pink Porter, George Jackson, Green Davenport, Calvin Span, Lewis Hunter being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said infant of Lee Bouknight came to her death upon their oaths do say that the said infant of Lee Bouknight came to her death by accidental burning on December 4, 1893 on the Spence place in Newberry County.  In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

W. W. Willingham Foreman, Luther S. Darby, Grant Porter, Sam (X) Fair, Newton  (X) Darby, Nath  (X) Moseley, Luther  (X) Brown, Pink  (X) Porter, George (X) Jackson, Green  (X) Davenport, Calvin (X) Span, Lewis  (X) Hunter

EVIDENCE

James Bridges being sworn says: I live on Brown & Moseley’s place half a mile from the Spence place. I had the wagon going after wood today December 4,1893. I saw a fire and knew it was Lee Bouknight’s house. I stopped the wagon and unhitched the mules and passed Abram Hartie’s and hollered fire! fire! I came on in a hurry. When I got to the house it was pretty well on fire all over. I found Lee’s wife and baby in the cotton patch on fire about 30 yards from the house. I saw Lee Bouknight on fire. I pulled his vest off and threw it aside and outened the fire from him. About that time Charlotte Span and Charlotte Bouknight came up screaming. I didn’t see the youngest child or Rosella till the house was burnt down. Lee said he had heated a rock and wrapped some old rags around it and put it at his wife’s feet and the bed clothes caught on fire. He put the bed on the floor and tried to put it out but could not. He said he could not get the child or Rosella out.                                                                                                                                 James (X) Bridges

W. G. Houseal being sworn says: I examined the dead body of infant of Lee Bouknight. Its death was caused by being burned to a crisp.                                                                                                                                       W. G. Houseal MD

Lee Bouknight, colored, his dwelling on the old Spence Place, belonging to Alan Wyse, 6 miles from Newberry was burned to the ground and 2 of his children burned to death on 12/4/1893. His wife was sick in bed and he placed a hot rock at her feet, which set fire to the bed. He got his wife and baby out of the house but could not reach the other two children aged 6 years and 18 months. Newberry Observer, 12/6/1893


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Helena in Newberry County the 17th of December A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Jimmie Wright then and there being dead by the oaths of W. C. Lindsay, Alfred Stuckman, J. L. Clarke, Mack Jackson, J. W. Wilson, Burley Hunter, Elija Waller, Benson Cook, L. F. Finney, App Smith, John A. Wilson, Anthony Williams being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Jimmie Wright came to his death upon their oaths do say that the said Jimmie Wright came to his death from natural causes at Helena SC in Newberry County on December 17, 1893. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County
J. A. Wilson Foreman, W. C. (X) Lindsay, Alfred (X) Stuckman, J. L. (X) Clarke, Mack (X) Jackson, J. W. (X) Wilson, Burley (X) Hunter, Elija (X) Waller, Benson (X) Cook, L. F. (X) Finney, App (X) Smith, Anthony (X) Williams

EVIDENCE

Weston Wright being duly sworn says: I am the mother of Jimmie Wright. He was six months old. I put him on the backside of the bed last night when I went to bed and this morning when I got up he did not move. He (was) used to getting up every morning when I get up. I looked to see what was the matter with him and he was dead. I called my husband and woke him up and told him I believed our baby was dead. He got up and told his uncle it was dead. He examined it before he told him. The baby was lying with his face towards me. I don’t know whether he was covered or not, it frightened me so. I noticed nothing peculiar about the baby. He just looked like he was asleep. He had not been sick no more than a bad cold. He had a cold two or three weeks. No doctor had been to see him. I don’t know whether he had any fever or not. He was lively before we went to bed last night. I didn’t suckle him through the night. I was accustomed to suckle him through the night. I was lying with my face towards him. We went to bed late and I didn’t wake up. I fed him before I went to bed. Gave him meat and bread. The baby was not close to me at all. I was in the middle of the bed. My husband was in front of the bed. The baby was not between us. Baby was never sickly much, no more than a bad cold. Bowels acted well. I had given it no medicine.                                             Weston Wright

Lewis Wright being duly sworn says: I am the uncle of Lewis Wright Jr., the father of the dead baby, Jimmie Wright. Jimmie Wright was found dead this morning December 17, 1893. Just about 3 o’clock or a little after I heard the child whining. I didn’t get up to come to see what was the matter with the child. The mother commenced crying when she waked. It was about 5 or 6 o’clock. Her husband asked her what was the matter and she said, “I believe my baby is dead”. Lewis Wright Jr. came to my room. I got up and came into the room where the dead child was. When the baby whined it whined about like always. It did not whine like it was cold or smothering. I caught hold of it when I came into the room and it was cold.                                                                                                                Lewis (X) Wright

W. G. Houseal being sworn says:  I have examined the dead child Jimmie Wright. I found no marks of violence. In my opinion he came to his death from natural causes.                                                                W. G. Houseal MD

Lewis Wright, colored, his 6-month-old child died, having been sick with a cold for some time. Newberry Observer, 12/20/1893

Louis Wright, aged colored man, died last week in Helena. Newberry Observer 5/6/1896


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at G. Z. Pitts Place in Newberry County the 18th day of December A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Harriet Ruff then and there being dead by the oaths of L.L. Reeder, J. L. Reeder, W. J. S. Dobbins, G. Z. Pitts, Mark Clark, Henry Clark, Edmund Clark, George Reeder, Jeff Williams, Pink Henderson, Abner Mangum, Ned Elisor being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Harriet Ruff came to her death upon their oaths do say that Harriet Ruff came to her death from natural causes December 18, 1893 on Mr. G. Z. Pitts Place in Newberry County. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

W. S. Dobbins Foreman, L.L. Reeder, J. L. Reeder, G. Z. Pitts, Mark (X) Clark, Henry  (X) Clark, Edmund  (X) Clark, George  (X) Reeder, Jeff  (X) Williams, Pink  (X) Henderson, Abner  (X) Mangum, Ned  (X) Elisor

EVIDENCE

Harriet Ruff being sworn says: Harriet Ruff, the little dead child, was found dead this morning December 18, 1893 at four o’clock. I and its mother slept in bed together. The baby was lying between us. The baby was one week old today. Carrie Ruff, the child’s mother, woke up at 4 o’clock this morning and raised up the child and said, “Aunt Harriet, my child is dead”. We had been awake and talking before she looked at it. It cried last night in the first part of the night and she tried to nurse it. It was alive a little after 1 o’clock when she nursed it. It cried a great deal before it nursed. It cried that way every night. Did the same thing in the daytime. The child never looked right since it was born.

                                                                                                                                                      Harriet (X) Ruff

W. G. Houseal being sworn says:  I examined Harriet Ruff this day December 18th, 1893. I found no marks of violence. In my opinion she came to her death from natural causes.                                              W. G. Houseal MD


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Mr. G. T. Reid’s plantation in Township No. 7 Newberry County the 26th of December A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Henry Campbell (alias Common) colored of Newberry County then and there being dead by the oaths of Z. F. Schumpert, Columbus Jones, T. B. Starns, Gilbert Brown, G. M. Steven, Elihu Coleman, W. H. Betts, Allen Boyd, T. M. Schumpert, Harrison Garner, John Robertson, Ransom Hailstock being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Henry Campbell, alias Common, came to his death upon their oaths do say that the said Henry Campbell, alias Common, came to his death from a pistol shot wound in the head on Mr. G. T. Reid’s plantation in No. 7 Township Newberry County on the 25th day of December 1893 by the hand of James, alias, Dick, Watts and so the jurors aforesaid upon their oaths aforesaid do say that the aforesaid Henry Campbell alias Common in manner and form aforesaid James alias Dick Watts then and there feloniously did kill against the peace and dignity of the same State aforesaid. In witness whereof  I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County
Z. F. Schumpert, Columbus Jones, T. B. Starns, Gilbert Brown, G. M. Steven, Elihu Coleman, W. H. Betts, Allen Boyd, T. M. Schumpert, Harrison Garner, John Robertson, Ransom Hailstock

EVIDENCE

Robert Coleman being sworn says: James (alias Dick) Watts was shaking dice and Henry Campbell (alias Common) was betting. Henry held a bill of money in his hand. Dick or James Watts claimed he owed him four dollars but Henry said it was only three dollars. Henry then took the money from the board in his hand and put it in his pocket. Dick says, “Henry, pay me my money.” Henry said, “You squabbled. I won’t pay you.” Dick says, “I’ll have my money or die and go to hell”. Dick then jerked out his knife. Some of the boys said don’t have no fuss. Then Henry picked up two rocks. Then Dick pulled out his pistol and ran back a few steps and fired. Then Henry – who was standing just jumped into the air and fell. Then Dick said, “God damn you”, and cut through the woods. Henry never moved or spoke after the shot was fired. As Henry picked up the rocks he said, “I got no knife nor no pistol. Dick, you got both your knife and your pistol. You can kill me but I won’t pay you no money.” Henry had stepped back when he picked up the rocks but was standing still facing Dick when the shot was fired. There were eight men and boys in the crowd.
                                                                                                                                                      Robert Coleman

T. B. Burton being sworn deposed:  James (alias Dick) Watts was shaking dice. Henry Campbell (alias Common) was betting. He had a bill of money. I don’t know the amount. Got to squabbling in the game. James (alias Dick) says, “Henry, I am four dollars in your money”. Henry says, “You ain’t but three”. Henry picked the money up off the board and walked away just about three steps. James says, “Henry, I want my money.” Henry walked off about 6 steps. James pulled out his knife. Henry picked up two rocks. James stepped back about 2 steps, jerked out his pistol and fired and broke and ran off a hundred yards and when came back to the yard I heard them say Henry was dead. I made no effort to interfere or stop the fight.                                                                                                T. B. Burton

George Farrow being sworn says:  James (alias Dick) Watts was running his ‘chuck bank’. Henry Campbell (alias Common) was betting. Dick Watts said, Henry, I am four dollars in that bill.” Henry Campbell says, “You ain’t but three”. Henry got up and put the bill in his pocket. Dick Watts says, “Henry, I want my money”. Henry says, “You get no money here because you squabbled in the game”. Dick says, “I’ll have my money or die and go to hell”. Dick pulled out a knife. Henry stepped backward, about six steps and said, “Dick, you can kill me if you want to. I ain’t got no knife nor pistol.” Henry Campbell stooped down and picked up two rocks and as Henry straightened up Dick fired. I saw Henry fall. Dick did not have his pistol out until Henry picked up the rocks.                             George (X) Farrow

Thomas Lindsay being duly sworn says:  Dick Watts running his chuck bank. Henry was betting. Dick says, “Henry, I am four dollars in your bill.” Henry says, “You ain’t but three”. Henry picked the money up and put it in his pocket. Dick says, “Henry, I want my money. Henry says, “Dick, you will not get it. You made a squabble in the game”. Dick pulled out his knife. Henry stepped back about six steps and picked up rocks. Dick fired. Henry jumped right straight up and fell. Dick ran and me too.                                                                                                 Thomas (X) Lindsay

Hamp Thomas being duly sworn says:  Dick Watts running dice bank. Henry had a piece of money on the board. He and Dick was betting. Dick claimed to have four dollars in money. Henry said, “You ain’t but three”. Henry picked up the money and put it in his pocket and Dick pulled his knife. Dick says, “Henry, I want my money and Henry walked off and picked up rocks and I ran.                                                                                                       Hamp (X) Thomas

Dr. J. H. McIntosh sworn testifies: I have examined the body of Henry Campbell and have performed an autopsy on the same. I find on the body no weapon of any kind but only some money amounting to six dollars and a half. The body has, with the exception of the gunshot wound to be afterwards described, no other marks of violence. In the middle line of the forehead about one and a half inches above the eyes is a wound of a pistol ball. The ball pierced the skin and the frontal bone and entered the brain in the upper portion of the frontal lobe; passed directly with the left lateral ventricle, traversing this and lodging in the posterior bone. I extracted the bullet and here exhibit it to you. The wound is amply sufficient to produce instant death and in my opinion Henry Campbell died instantly from the effects of this wound. The direction of the ball would show that both Henry Campbell and the man who shot him must have been standing almost on the same level and directly facing each other.                                                                  James H. McIntosh MD

Dick Watts, colored, shot and killed Henry Cannon, colored, 12/25/1893. Watts is a fugitive. Newberry Observer, 12/27/1893

James Watts, alias Dick Watts, COURT OF SESSION, murder, true bill. Newberry Observer, 3/21/1894


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Newberry Court House in Newberry County the 27th of December A.D. 1893 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Henry Auton of Newberry County then and there being dead by the oaths of G. A. Langford, Y. J. Setsler, W.F. Timmons, G. S. Timmons, M. L. Gauntt, William Bedenbaugh, James Bishop, J. W. Swindler, Calla McWhirter, U. J. Stuck, J. R. Maddox, J. R. Starling being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Henry Auton, came to his death upon their oaths do say that the said Henry Auton, came to his death from a blow on the side of the head from some hard substance thrown by the hand of Henry Werts at Newberry Court House in Newberry County on the 26th day of December 1893 and so the jurors aforesaid upon their oaths aforesaid do say that the aforesaid H. N. Auton in manner and form aforesaid Henry Werts then and there feloniously did kill against the peace and dignity of the same State aforesaid. In witness whereof  I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County
G. A. Langford Foreman, J. T. Setsler, W. F. Timmons, G. S. Timmons, M. L. Gauntt, W. J. Bedenbaugh, J. M. Bishop, J. W. Swindler, C. McWhirter, U. J. Stuck, J. R. Maddox, G. R. Starling

EVIDENCE

W. H. M. Adams being sworn says:  I left Charles Tidwell’s last night about 6 or 7 o’clock. I heard someone talking over about Mr. McGowan’s front yard and saw Mr. Henry Auten standing against the fence and two or three others on the ground in a pile. I heard one say, “Let my finger go”. The other say, “Get off of me”. I walked up and Henry Auten pulled Henry Werts away and the two was on the ground together and got up. Mr. McGowan and Henry Werts went inside McGowan’s yard and Henry Auten was trying to quiet them and then Werts or McGowan hit Auten on the nose and made it bleed. Auten then told them that if they would come out one at a time he would whip them both. Henry Werts then picked up a brick or rock – I don’t know which – and threw it at Auten and struck him on the side of the head, the left I think. The lick could have been heard 25 – 30 yards and then Auten staggered across the street – I think three times – and then went in the direction of town – and Frank Smith asked that we go and see about him and we met him coming back and Auten said to us that he thought his skull was broke.                     W. H. W. Adams 

F. M. Smith being sworn says:  Yesterday evening between 6 and 7 o’clock I was sitting at home by my fire and my wife said she would go over to Mr. McGowan’s to supper and was gone 4 or 5 minutes and returned. She said Mr. McGowan was drunk and had run his wife out of the house and soon after I heard my little boy crying. I met him at the door and asked him what was the matter. He said he asked Miss Mattie Werts for an apple. He said Mr. McGowan shoved him from the dining room, out at the front door and slapped him. I went over to see Mr. McGowan to see what he did it for. He said he did not slap him or push him. I told him it was all right then if he did not slap him. Then I started back home. Mr. McGowan came as far as the gate with me and we stopped there to talk over the matter. He caught me by my coat and jerked me. I pushed him down. He got up and came back to me again. Henry Werts begged him to go in the house and behave himself and then grabbed me in the face with his hands and got his fingers in my mouth and said to Henry Werts to make him turn me loose. I then told him if he would go in the house I would turn him loose and he said he was not going in. Trying to get loose from him we fell on the sidewalk. Henry Auten then kicked McGowan twice in the face. I then turned McGowan loose. McGowan said to Auten, “I have been a friend to you. What are you kicking me in the face for”. Henry Werts then taken McGowan inside of his yard. Auten followed on towards his gate. Auten said to McGowan that he could whip him and his whole damn family. Henry Werts said, “You are a damn lying son of a b__”, and stooped down. When he arose I heard a lick. Auten then said, “I am struck”, and ran. I said to Werts as he was going up the steps, “You have hurt this man”. He gave me no answer. Mr. Auten came back to me and asked me over in town with him for an officer to have Werts arrested. I asked him to wait until morning and he said he would. Myself and Auten and Alewine stood and talked for some ten minutes. I left and went in my house.
                                                                                                                                                      F. M. Smith

Charles Tidwell being sworn says:  Mr. Adams was at my house and left and I went out to the well and while going to the well I saw some one on the sidewalk. I thought they were drunk. I taken my water in the house and came back out to see what they were doing and I heard them quarreling and found that it was Auten and McGowan. I stood at my yard fence until the crowd started to McGowan’s gate. I thought the fuss was over. I turned to go to my woodpile. I heard them start again. McGowan on someone. One spoke in a low tone. Don’t know what they said. Auten said, “I can whip you and your whole damn family,” and Henry Werts cursed him for a lying s__ of a b__ and then I heard a blow. Auten said, “I am hurt”, and came staggering towards my gate and turned the corner at the well and someone said, “I will shoot”, and my wife (Heard) it and called me in the house and I went back out and Auten (was) at the Chaney tree near my house. Mr. Alewine and Frank Smith were standing in the road talking. They stood there for a few minutes and left. I went back in the house.                                                                                                          Charles B. Tidwell

William Alewine being sworn says:  I saw Henry Werts throw and when he threw called Henry Auten a lying son of a b__. I heard the lick strike something, can’t say what and myself, Auten and Frank Smith left. Auten told me that Werts had killed him. We were coming in the direction Smith’s house. I was on the street and heard Werts cursing at or near McGowan’s house.                                                                                                                William Alewine

O. B. Mayer and W. G. Houseal being sworn says:  We this day, December 27th 1893, made a postmortem examination of H. N. Auten. His death was caused by a blow upon the left temporal bone causing fracture of the bone, rupture of the middle artery, hemorrhage, formation of a clot and pressure upon the brain.               O. B. Mayer MD/W.G. Houseal MD

Henry Werts killed Henry Auton by a blow to the head with a brick. Details page 3, column 3, Newberry Observer, 12/27/1893; Henry Werts has left for parts unknown. Newberry Observer, 1/3/1894; Henry Werts, COURT OF SESSION, murder, true bill, defendant at large. Newberry Observer, 3/21/1894; Henry Werts, wanted for killing Henry Auton of West End ten years ago came to town yesterday and surrendered. The newspaper account of the incident from 12/27/1893 was included in the column. Mr. Werts was discovered living in Columbia with a wife and family. He is 30 years old and consumptive, in very poor health. Page 8, Newberry Observer 8/11/1903; He was granted $1500 bail, Page 8, Newberry Observer 8/18/1903; COURT OF SESSIONS, continued, Page 8, Newberry Observer 11/10/1903


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at M. M. Satterwhite’s plantation in Newberry County the 9th day of January A.D. 1894 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Della Brooks then and there being dead by the oaths of Burton Satterwhite, Lewis Dorrah, Austin Adkins, Prince Caughman, Tom Gilliam, Hamp Butler, Cole Mangum, Charley Brown, Charley Gary, Steve Satterwhite, Albert Caughman, Press Mangum being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Della Brooks came to her death upon their oaths do say that Della Brooks came to her death from accidental burning January 8, 1894. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

Burton Satterwhite Foreman, Lewis (X) Dorrah, Austin (X) Adkins, Prince (X) Caughman, Tom (X) Gilliam, Hamp (X) Butler, Cole (X) Mangum, Charley (X) Brown, Charley (X) Gary, Steve (X) Satterwhite, Albert (X) Caughman, Press (X) Mangum

EVIDENCE

Alice Brooks being sworn says: I am the mother of Della Brooks. On the 8th day of January 1894 I left my two children in the house and went to the spring after water and when I came back and got near the house I saw Della standing in the door and on fire with nearly all her clothing burned off. I ran and threw water over her and put the fire out and she died in a few minutes. I hollered and others came.                                                                                        Alice (X) Brooks

Dr. W. D. Senn being duly sworn says: I certify that I have examined the body of Della Brooks and find that she came to her death from being burned over the entire body.                                                               W. D. Senn MD


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Welmor Gauntt’s place in Newberry County the11h day of January A.D. 1894 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Hattie Jackson then and there being dead by the oaths of Julius Bonds, Jim Counts, Mose Counts, Joseph Collins, Frank Dock, Noah Kenedy, Joe Penny, John Harmon, Burr Wood, Dave Gallman, Richard Shell, W. G. Houseal being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Hattie Jackson came to her death upon their oaths do say that Hattie Jackson came to her death from accidental smothering at Wilmon Gauntt’s place on June 11, 1894. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

Julius Bonds Foreman, Jim  (X) Counts, Mose (X) Counts, Joseph (X) Collins, Frank (X) Dock, Noah (X) Kenedy, Joe (X) Penny, John (X) Harmon, Burr (X) Wood, Dave (X) Gallman, Richard (X) Shell, W. G. Houseal

EVIDENCE

Fannie Cannon being sworn says: I am the mother of Hattie Jackson. She was going on eight weeks old. She died sometime today before day Jan 11, 1894. I found her dead this morning when I got up. She was alive this morning after the first shower of rain. That was about 1 o’clock. The baby was not sick that I know of. When I went to bed she nursed the breast last about 1 o’clock. She did not cry during the night. She has not had a cold or cough lately. She has been healthy since she was born. Has not been sick any. Had a cold two or three weeks ago. She was lying on my arm when I found her dead. The cover was over her. Whether I got on her during the night or not I don’t know. I don’t know what caused her death. Addie Glenn and her husband were in the house with me last night. I live in the same house with them. I slept sound last night and don’t know what happened between the last time the baby nursed one o’clock and daybreak. It was about half past seven when I woke up and found the baby dead.                       Fannie (X) Cannon

Addie Glenn being sworn says:  Fannie Cannon lives in the house with me and my husband. I did not know Hattie Jackson was dead until I got up this morning. Fannie got up this morning and said, “Addie, I believe my baby is dead.” I told her to hold her ear down to it and see if it was breathing. She did so and told me it was not breathing. I held my ear down to it and found it dead. Fannie then said, “Yes, my baby is dead”, and came to the fireplace crying. She took its death pretty hard. It had been a healthy child ever since it got over a cold, which it had when it was about three weeks old. It did not look any way peculiar. Looked just like it was living when I saw it dead this morning. Red water ran out of its mouth after I came back from my father’s. That was about 9 o’clock. I did not hear the baby cry during the night.

                                                                                                                                                      Addie (X) Glenn

Dr. W. G. Houseal being sworn says: I have examined the dead body of Hattie Jackson. I found no evidence of any violence or disease. In my opinion it was smothered to death.                                                          W. G. Houseal MD


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at the Satterwhite’s place in Newberry County the 11th day of January A.D. 1894 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Fannie Hill then and there being dead by the oaths of Whit Andrews, Young Brown, Dock Mangum, Bill Pitts, John Burton, Jordan Griffin, Jack Leak, Charlie Cook, Pink Workman, Andy Grey, Pink Satterwhite, W. H. Wallace being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Fannie Hill came to her death upon their oaths do say that Fannie Hill came to her death from accidental suffocation on the Satterwhite place on the 11th day of January 1894. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

W. H. Wallace Foreman, Whit (X) Andrews, Young (X) Brown, Dock (X) Mangum, Bill (X) Pitts, John (X) Burton, Jordan (X) Griffin, Jack (X) Leak, Charlie (X) Cook, Pink (X) Workman, Andy (X) Grey, Pink (X) Satterwhite,

EVIDENCE

Bill Hill being sworn says:  I am the father of the child Fannie Hill. My wife awoke and said, “Bill, I believe the child is dead”. I got up, got a light and looked and told her it is dead. Was not sick that I knew of. It fretted a little. The baby was lying upon her arm when I went to sleep.                                                               Bill (X) Hill

Alice Hill being duly sworn says:  I am the mother of the dead child Fannie Hill. She was lying upon my arm. When I woked up it had gotten under my arm. I felt it and it was limby and I told Bill I believed it was dead. He got up and got a light, went back and looked and said he believed it was dead. Don’t think it was sick. When I waked up its face was down between my arm and breast. My other baby cried was what waked me up. I had twins. I guess it was between 11 and 12 o’clock.                                                                                                                         Alice (X) Hill

Dr. T. W. Smith being duly sworn says: I have examined the body of deceased and find death caused from suffocation.


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at Mrs. Lula W. Long’s place in Newberry County the 21st day of January A.D. 1894 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Lucenia Downes then and there being dead by the oaths of Henry Robertson, Stanmore Neal, William Mendenhall, Bass Emory, Jerry Nelson, David Boseman, Joe Davis, Stephen Mathis, Pierce Butler, George Smith, George Spearman, William Gary being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Lucenia Downes came to her death upon their oaths do say that Lucenia Downes came to her death from accidentally being choked on Mrs. Lula W. Long’s place in Newberry County on the 20th day of January 1894. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

Pierce (X) Butler Foreman, Henry (X) Robertson, Stanmore (X) Neal, William (X) Mendenhall, Bass (X) Emory, Jerry (X) Nelson, David (X) Boseman, Joe (X) Davis, Stephen (X) Mathis, George (X) Smith, George (X) Spearman, William (X) Gary

EVIDENCE

Mrs. Lula W. Long testimony:  When the child was brought down to my house by its father it was almost dead. I had them carry it into the light and I ran my fingers down its throat. I succeeded in getting a good-sized piece of bread out of its throat.                                                                                                                                  Lula W. Long

Bennett Downes being sworn says: I am the father of Lucenia Downes. She was standing at the table eating some grease and bread and she got choked. We beat her in the back and gave her some water and then ran my fingers down her throat. Then we taken her and ran down to Mrs. Lula Long’s and she ran her finger down her throat and got a piece of bread out of her throat and then we gave her some more water and she made two gasps and died. We then carried her back home.                                                                                                                           Bennett (X) Downes

Mattie Downes being sworn says: I am the mother of Lucenia Downes. Lucenia Downes got choked on bread last night, January 20, 1894 and I beat her on the back to try to get it out. We then taken her down to Mrs. Lula W. Long’s to see if she could do anything to relieve. She done all that she could but Lucenia died there and I brought her back home.    

                                                                                                                                                      Mattie (X) Downes

Dr. J. H. McCullough being sworn says:  This is to certify that I have examined the body of Lucenia Downes and find that she came to her death from being choked on bread, Newberry SC, January 21, 1893     J. H. McCullough MD


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at J.B. Clary's place in Newberry County the 3rd day of February A.D. 1894 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Carrie Spence then and there being dead by the oaths of T. F. Hendrix, D. S. Teague, T. N. Boozer, W. P. Johnson, Tommie Hendrix, J. R. Senn, L. H. Dennis, J. B. Clary, J. S. Boozer, J. G. Senn, J. D. Boozer, Dr. W. D. Senn being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Carrie Spence came to her death upon their oaths do say that Carrie Spence came to her death from post partum hemorrhage on J. B. Clary’s place 2nd February 1894 in Newberry County. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

James B. Clary Foreman, T. F. Hendrix, D. S. Teague, Thomas N. Boozer, W. P. Johnson, Tommie Hendrix, L. H. Dennis, J. S. Boozer, J. G. Senn, J. D. Boozer, Dr. W. D. Senn, W. T. Hendrix

EVIDENCE

Mrs. Sallie Reid being sworn says: I was called in to see Carrie Spence and she was not as bad off as have seen many one. I waited on her as I do other women. I knowed she was not doing well when I left her but was sick and could not stay longer. She was wasting a great deal. Her labor was normal. I remained two hours after the child was born. She suffered some with shortness of breath but did not have any spasm but complained of being cold. She said she had been sick all night. I was with her about 1 ½ hours before the child was born. She did not waste any before the child was born. I gave ergot to check the hemorrhage but it did not check. She was conscious when I left. I asked her if she felt any better and she said not much. Her feet and legs were not swollen but was very pale. She complained of the shortness of breath right after the child was born. She complained of a hurting in her breast. She was pale before the child was born. She complained of being very thirsty. She wanted coffee but I told her not to drink it more than blood hot. She never got up after the child was born. I don’t think she complained of the pain in the chest before the child was born. She did not have a chill. I told aunt Tiddy to wrap her up in warm cloths.                     S. A. Reid

Tildy Robertson being sworn says:  I came down here this morning and asked what was the matter with her. She said her back hurt her. I said, “You had better let me go after Mr. Spence”. She said, “I am afraid.” I said what afraid of? She said, “I am (afraid) he will beat me to death and I want to get up and get me a razor. She did not say what she was going to do with it. I did not ask her what she wanted with the razor. She did not get up to hunt for the razor. A pain struck her and she laid down. She just laid there and grunted. I heard her say last week she was going to kill herself. She did not (say) how she was going to do it. I did not see her have any medicine. I stayed with her about one half hour but was in and out until she died but had gone to milk when she died. I laid my ear down when I came back to see if I could hear her breathe but could not. Told Mr. Spence she was dead. She wasted I think about a quart altogether. I came in a stream [of wasting]. I was in the room when the child was born and she complained of a pain in her stomach. I put my hand on her stomach. I did not feel any lump. There was no ‘hard’ – not there. When I rubbed her stomach the blood would run a little and stop. She said she was wasting terribly. There was nothing done to stop it – the hemorrhage. I have had children but never wasted like she did. I never had pains in the bottom of my stomach and be wasting at the same time. She did not ask me for anything but said she wished she had something to stop the hemorrhage. We saved all the cloths that was stained with blood. She did not tell me why she was going to kill herself. She never told me that any body had or had not threatened to hurt her. The last thing she told me was to come here quick. She believed she was dying but I did not go but told her to wait until I come back from milking but left Martha Hunter with her.

                                                                                                                                                      Tildy (X) Robertson

Fannie Means being sworn says:  I came over late yesterday evening. She called for some camphor. I asked Mr. Spence for it. He gave it to me and I gave it to her. I did not give her any wine. She just smelled the camphor. She was not complaining of any pain but she said she felt bad. I don’t know whether she was wasting or not. She was lying still on her back. I was not here when she died. She did not say anything to me except she felt bad. She did not look wild but looked like she always did to me. I never noticed her looking pale. She was not sweating as I know of but (I) did not have my hands on her. She did not get up while I was there. She did not say anything to me about killing herself. I guess the sun was down when I went home. It was cloudy.                                                                          Fannie (X) Means

Dr. J. H. McCullough being sworn says:  This is to certify that I have examined the body of Miss Carrie Spence and find that she came to her death from Post Partum hemorrhage, Newberry SC, February 3, 1894   J. H. McCullough MD


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at G. B. Summer’s place in Newberry County the 6th day of February A.D. 1894 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of Silas Hart then and there being dead by the oaths of G. B. Summers, Sam Higgins, E. L. Paysinger, Dennis Farrow, C. T. Paysinger, Rube Watts, Sam Robertson, F. P. Culbreath, John Higgins, Sam Jackson, Andrew Gadson, Butler McGraw being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said Silas Hart came to his death upon their oaths do say that the said Silas Hart came to his death by being accidental burns received the 4th of February 1894 on G. B. Summer’s place in Newberry County. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

G. B. Summers Foreman, Sam Higgins, E. L. Paysinger, Dennis (X) Farrow, C. T. Paysinger, Rube (X) Watts, Sam Robertson, F. P. (X) Culbreath, John (X) Higgins, Sam (X) Jackson, Andrew (X) Gadson, Butler (X) McGraw
                                                                                          EVIDENCE

Sam Robinson being sworn says:  I came about 4 o’clock to Frank Hart’s house. The little child came along down the path crying. I thought it was going to Mr. Summer’s house and he came running to me holding up his hands and Ma said to me “Look, old man – the child.” I came over in the path and took him home and put him in the bed. He was burnt all over his hips and legs and privates.                                                                                 Sam (X) Robinson

Clara Robinson being sworn says:  It was about 4 o’clock when we came to Frank Hart’s and as we walked up we met the little child. He had his arms held up. He was whining and I said to Sam to take him and I said, “Lord have mercy Sam, that child is burnt nearly to death. You take the child home and I will go to Mr. Summers and get him to blow the horn for its mother and father to come”. But he said they could not hear it but that he would go up and see it and brought Mr. Schumpert and brought some linseed oil and put on it.                                              Clara (X) Robinson

Willis Hart being sworn says: I saw my little brother when he caught fire. There was a chunk of wood in the fireplace and he set down on it. He said he wanted to die. When he caught fire I pulled him out and poured water on him.

                                                                                                                                                      Willis (X) Hart

Dr. J. H. McCullough being sworn says: I have examined the body of Silas Hart and find that he came to his death from burns received on both thighs, bowels, scrotum and penis.  Newberry SC, February 6, 1894        J. H. McCullough MD


State of South Carolina, County of Newberry

An inquisition indented taken at P. S. Brook’s place in Newberry County the 14th day of February A.D. 1894 before F. M. Lindsay Coroner for said County upon view of the body of P. S. Brooks then and there being dead by the oaths of W. H. Wendt, W. P. Lominick, J. H. McGraw, S. J. D. Price, J. A. McGraw, L. C. Caldwell, Joseph M. Brown, Nathan Caldwell, Chris Ruff, S. W. Wilson, John G. Price, Godfrey Price being a lawful jury of inquest who being charged and sworn to inquire for the State of South Carolina where and by what means the said P. S. Brooks came to his death upon their oaths do say that the said P. S. Brooks came to his death from natural causes at his place in Newberry County  the 14th of February 1894. In witness whereof I, F. M. Lindsay Coroner aforesaid and the jurors aforesaid to this inquisition have interchangeably put our hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.

F. M. Lindsay, Coroner of Newberry County

W. H. Wendt Foreman, W. P. Lominick, J. H. McGraw, S. J. D. Price, J. A. McGraw, L. C. Caldwell, Joseph M. Brown, Nathan (X) Caldwell, Chris Ruff, S. W. Wilson, John G. Price, Godfrey (X) Price
                                                                                          EVIDENCE

M. R. Brooks being sworn says:  I am the son of Mr. P. S. Brooks. This morning February 14th my father got up to all appearances well with the exception of the toothache. He ate breakfast as heartily as he usually ate. After breakfast he sat by the fire. Seemed to be well, reading a paper. About 11 o’clock I walked off to uncle Nathan Caldwell’s and stayed over there until about 12 o’clock. When I came back he was eating his dinner. I ate mine right after him. He was nearly done eating when I got home. After I ate dinner I went and watered the mules and came back into the house and threaded a needle to fix a bridle. My father helped to twist the thread. While we were twisting the thread Messrs Sim Price and Chris Ruff came in. My father sat down on the right hand of the fireplace to shield his left jaw from the fire as he was still suffering with the toothache. He joked Mr. Price about his pants. Mr. Price asked him to lend him a plug of tobacco. He got up to the bureau to get it. After he got the tobacco and gave it to Mr. Price he complained of a pain in his chest. He said, “Oh such a pain struck me in my chest.” He then sat down in his chair and didn’t sit there two minutes before he got up and went to the door and tried to throw up. Mr. Sim Price asked him if he was sick. He said he was feeling a little nauseated from the pain. He then went and laid down on the bed. After he laid on the bed a few minutes he went to the door and threw up. After he threw up he said, “Malcolm, get me one of those doses of morphine and give it to me quick. After I gave him the morphine he told me to iron his breast with a hot smoothing iron. I did so. While I was ironing his breast he told me to make a pallet in front of the fire – that his feet were cold. I did so. After lying before the fire I ironed his breast again. He got so bad that I asked him if he wanted me to send after Dr. Brown. He said no. He kept growing worse and Mr. Price said, “You better send for Dr. Brown.” Mr. Chris Ruff went after Dr. Brown. We rubbed his chest with Jackson’s Magie Balsam. He complained the pain had gone lower down – to rub his stomach. I then rubbed his stomach. He told Mr. Price that he felt a little better – that the pain was moving about. He asked me to rub his chest again. I did so. I asked him how he felt. He said a little better if the pain just didn’t go to his heart. After he said that he asked me to get another dose of morphine, which had been fixed by Dr. Brown for him before. I got it and dissolved it in water but before I could give it to him he was dead. My father was forty-eight years old. Dr. Brown did not come to see him. Sent some morphine powders. He died about 2:30 about an hour after the pain struck him in the chest.                                                                                                                         M. R. Brooks

S. J. D. Price being sworn says:  I came to Mr. Press Brooks today at about 1:20. When I came in Mr. Brooks was at the bureau with a plate. Chris Ruff came in with me. He started to sit in the right hand corner. Mr. Brooks told him he wanted to sit there to shield his left jaw, as it was hurting. We joked one another. I asked him for some tobacco. After he gave me the tobacco I saw him going to the door with his hands on his chest. I asked him what was the matter. He said he had a terrible pain in his breast. He then went and lay on the bed. Lay there a few minutes and then went to the door and tried to throw up. He said he was not sick – only the pain. He threw up and went back to bed and asked Malcolm to give him a dose of morphine quick. Malcolm gave it to him. He then asked for a hot iron to iron his breast. Malcolm ironed his breast. He asked for Magie Balsam to have his breast rubbed. Malcom got it, rubbed. He asked for a pallet before the fire, as his feet were getting cold. He lay a little and said, "Rub my arms". It is getting in my arms”. He then complained of pain in his stomach. His stomach was rubbed. I then asked him if he felt any better. He said, “Yes, I feel a little better now”. He said, “The neuralgia had left my jaw and gave in me and if it goes to my heart it will be bad.” He then said, “The pain has gone back to my breast” and we rubbed his chest again. He asked Malcolm for the other dose of morphine quick. Malcolm got the morphine and dissolved it in the spoon. He went to raise up but fell back. I saw his feet jerk like a spasm. Malcom then said, “Sim, pa is dying”. Mr. Brooks then opened his mouth and gave a long breath and was dead.                                                                                                                             S. J. D. Price

Dr. W. G. Houseal being sworn says:  I examined the dead body of Mr. P. S. Brooks today February 14, 1894. In my opinion his death was caused by organic heart disease.                                                              W.G. Houseal MD

P. S. Brooks, 48 years old, died at his home 7 miles from Newberry on 2/14/1894 with organic heart disease. Newberry Observer, 2/21/1894

 

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