Arrested for Arson

The Decatur County Herald April 19, 1907
Contributed by David Wise

Lexington, Tenn., April 15--A very sensational arrest was made at Darden in this county Thursday when Sheriff H.J. Tate and Deputy Frank Blankenship took into custody J. Henry Wise on an indictment of arson. Mr. Wise against whom the allegations are made is a prominent farmer and land owner and is highly connected. He is charged with burning the Baptist church at Darden, which mysteriously happened about two years ago. A little late the livery stable of William Hays in Darden was fired and Mr. Wise is alleged to be the incendiary. Scarcely two weeks ago the residence on the Wise farm which Mr. Wise and family had for years occupied, but which was lately sold to his brother-in-law, John H. Reeves, was mysteriously burned one night immediately after Wise and his family had vacated. He is charged with that burning. The trial was held here before Magistrates G.W. Stewart and G.B. Gibson and attracted considerable attention. The prosecutors are Willam Hays and John Henry Reeves. The evidence was severely damaging to Wise so much as that he was bound over to the Circuit court on $2,100 bond.—Special to the Commercial