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Horrifying Local History
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gimpface
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 9:31 pm    Post subject: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

UO, I want you to tell me about your favorite local historical events that are, well, horrifying. I want you to tell me about the tragedies, disasters, and other unsavory tidbits of local lore that would be best forgotten about.

I'd have to say that, having grown up in Taney County, Alf Bolin is one of my favorites. This guy was a civil war era bushwacker that would, rob, torture, and kill random people under the pretense of being a confederate guerrilla. In reality, his gang attacked whoever was happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, though he did target the families of Union soldiers whenever it was convenient. His favorite tortures were cutting off ears and noses, as well as evisceration.

Bolin was eventually killed by a Union agent disguised as a wounded confederate, who bashed his face in with a fire poker. His body was decapitated, the head was sent to Ozark where it was put on a pole, his body left to rot on the bank of Swan creek in Forsyth. The head was blown off the pole in a windstorm and, according to legend, was eaten by a herd of wild hogs. At the time of his death, he was seventeen years old.

So tell me, UO: What nightmares happened in your back yard?

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BROUSER
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 11:18 pm    Post subject: Re: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

On March 1, 1892, "John Wesley Bright, insanely jealous of his lovely wife Matilda Gideon being a little too friendly with their neighbor, Mr. Jones, shot her in the back and left her dead outside their Taney County cabin. His daughter, oldest of their four small children, ran for help to the neighbors, and soon a posse was after Bright. The children went to stay with their aunt Nancy Minerva Gideon and her husband, Isaiah Stewart.
Bright was soon captured and jailed on murder charges, and held in the Forsyth jail. Forsyth, home to a large faction of the "Bald Knobbers" vigilantes of the post-civil war Ozarks, didn't take too kindly to one of their own women being treated in such a rude fashion. Why, Matilda's uncle, J.J. Gideon, had been a star defensive attorney for the Bald Knobbers in one of their many trials for hanging no-count ruffians like Bright. So, the cards were stacked somewhat against the hapless Mr. Bright as he sat awaiting trial in the flimsy Taney lockup.

On March 12, after the first day of hearings, a tension could be felt in Taney. Men stood on street corners, talking in hushed tones. The local saloon was doing a brisk business. After several hours of drinking, a group of men appeared in front of the jail and began pounding on the locked door with a sledgehammer. Bright, alone inside the jail, must have been feeling a little concerned about then.

Sheriff Cook and Deputy Williams watched from across the street. Rumor has it that Cook was himself a Bald Knobber, and he did nothing to stop the mob. Finally, Deputy Williams decided to put an end to the uprising. Pushing through the crowd, he blocked the door of the jail and ordered the men to go home.

In the heat of the moment, two shots rang out from the crowd, and Deputy Williams fell dead on the ground. Now, Bright was getting *real* nervous. Two men crossed the street to the town well, and cut the rope from the bucket. It was soon tied around Bright's neck as he was dragged from the cell. He was hoisted onto a horse behind another rider and the mob headed for the big oak tree in the cemetery. They threw the rope over a sturdy branch, and soon John Wesley Bright paid the price for shooting Matilda Gideon in the back.

Sheriff Cook, wanting to make an example of Bright, threw his body on the steps to the Taney Courthouse and left it there, the rope still around his neck, for days. Wild hogs dined on the murderer's corpse.

While the local citizenry was largely pleased with Bright's demise, the murder of Deputy Williams left the good people of Forsyth a tad uneasy. The Governor of Missouri offered a reward for the capture of the lynch mob.

Arrested for taking part in the murders were cousins of Matilda Gideon: Abraham Lincoln "Link" Weatherman, Samuel W. Weatherman, Martin Weatherman, Luther Keithley, and James Stewart, along with about a dozen other men. George Friend, at the center of the controversy, turned state's evidence and agreed to testify against the others. Many were prominent citizens of Forsyth, including Link Weatherman, Justice of the Peace.

In a bizzarre incident, as the prisoners were transported to a trial hearing in an open wagon,they were all unshackled and given loaded guns to protect themselves in case of an attack by Bright's relatives. No attack occurred, and none of the prisoners attempted an escape. Were they perhaps confident of an acquital?

Sheriff Cook selected the jurors for the trial, most of whom were Bald Knobbers. At this point, the prosecuting attorney dropped the charges against George Friend, since he had promised to testify against the others. Friend immediately refused to testify, so the prosecutor dropped all charges against the others.

John Wesley Bright had signed over all his property to his brother-in- law, Isaiah Stewart, who in turn agreed to post his bail money...which, of course, Bright never got a chance to use. (Cousin James Stewart was part of the Lynch Mob.) Stewart transferred the property to the names of the four young orphaned children of Matilda Gideon and John Wesley Bright. Stewart and Nancy Minerva Gideon raised the four children."

I'm related to the Gideons of the story, although we are Stone County Gideons, not the trashy Christian/Taney county branch.

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Willard
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 10:50 am    Post subject: RE: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

I think everyone knows the story of the 1903 hangings here in Springfield. I don't really wish to elaborate right now.
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Kit
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 11:04 am    Post subject: Re: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

that was my answer in the chat room too
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gimpface
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 2:21 pm    Post subject: Re: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

BROUSER wrote:
Stuff


The baldknobbers were always pretty interesting, too.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 18, 2009 2:18 pm    Post subject: RE: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

http://legalminds.lp.findlaw.com/list/deathpenalty/msg01453.html

A girl was decapitated, her head was thrown in a porta-potty and her body was tossed in a field on Lindenwood University's campus. I used to walk right through there on the way to school most every day passing right by both the porta-potty and the field. A female friend of mine had attended a party in the murderer's dorm room and freaked out when she found out it was those guys who killed this girl...
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2009 9:38 pm    Post subject: Re: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

I live in between Iola and Fort Scott. In 1900, three men evidently murdered a family on their ranch north of town. They were subsequently caught and jailed in the Courthouse. A mob dragged them out and hanged them from the Catalpa Bean Trees on the lawn.

In Iola, in August, 1982, I was at the Fair. Yorkie Smith, a local, had murdered a person in a drug deal in Kansas City and been locked up in Lansing. He'd gotten out and was back in town. He kidnapped four people, sodomizing two of them and attempting to murder all of them. He killed three. One survived despite being wounded by him. Yorkie was later killed in the prison at MacAlester, by his fellow inmates. I was talking to a group of people when the little brother of one of my best friends approached me and asked me to hold some trinket he'd won while he rode some ride with a girl. A long-haired boy came up and was talking to him while he stood by me. The long-haired kid was one of the murder victims, I believe or was the one who survived. I forget. Evidently they got crossways with Yorkie over some drug deal. He dressed up weirdly in some Army Poncho and abducted them one-by-one and killed them. Two of the boys (teenagers still in high school) he raped first. He killed two of them and the third he raped and stabbed and left in the Neosho River, but he survived. It is really practically in town and he was seen by a lady on her way to a real early-morning job over on the west side of town in a relatively isolated area. He killed her too. He was suspected of the murder of my Aunt's neice who had been murdered in Iola back in 1969, before he was put away the first time.

My wife and I weren't married yet and she was working at the IGA in 1982. Yorkie came in during this murder spree (he hadn't been caught yet) and bought a porno mag there at the store, checking out in my wife's line. She was nineteen. He wanted to go on a date with her and she declined as politely as possible, being very creeped both at the time and much more so later when it all came out.

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CaveGirl
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 12, 2009 7:50 pm    Post subject: RE: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

Quite a few years back, some dudes started tripping on LSD out at Sappington Bridge (outside of Sullivan) and killed this random woman. If memory serves, they bashed her head in and sent her down the river.

Edited for TMI, just in case.


Last edited by CaveGirl on Tue Oct 13, 2009 10:30 am; edited 1 time in total
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basjr
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 7:19 am    Post subject: Re: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

seriously, cavegirl does that not make you an admitted accesory to the crime???An accessory is generally not present at the actual crime, and may be subject to lesser penalties than an accomplice or principal
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 9:06 am    Post subject: Re: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

basjr wrote:
seriously, cavegirl does that not make you an admitted accesory to the crime???An accessory is generally not present at the actual crime, and may be subject to lesser penalties than an accomplice or principal


Accessory After-the-Fact.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 10:23 am    Post subject: Re: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

Scout wrote:
basjr wrote:
seriously, cavegirl does that not make you an admitted accesory to the crime???An accessory is generally not present at the actual crime, and may be subject to lesser penalties than an accomplice or principal


Accessory After-the-Fact.


No. I wasn't there and didn't hear about it firsthand. I wasn't even 100% positive that the accusations were true until the trials.
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redox
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 11:57 am    Post subject: Re: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

back in highschool I knew this guy who's girlfriend broke up with him. so he shot her in the head and drove around the city (new orleans) with her dead body for several days having necro sex with it. when the cops cought up with him, the body was covered in leaves in the back seat soaked with gasoline. one part of it that freaked me out was the car he was in was one that me and another guy had stolen but it had changed hands a couple times before the psycho bought it.

Last edited by redox on Tue Oct 13, 2009 3:23 pm; edited 1 time in total
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crazydrummerdude
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 2:05 pm    Post subject: Re: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

redox for the first-hand-experience win
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redox
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 3:21 pm    Post subject: Re: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

I have a couple others but I'll refrain
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redox
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 10:08 pm    Post subject: Re: Horrifying Local History Reply with quote

SubLunar wrote:
redox wrote:
her dead body


I'd hit it.


dude you are fucked in the head
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