A minister Dragged out of the Pulpit while Preaching



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New York Times: ProQuest Historical Newspapers on-line

29Jul1857


A Minister Dragged out of the Pulpit while Preaching

From the Cincinnati Gazette


Cummins, Rockcastle County, Ky., July 22 - Las Sunday, as Rev. John G. Fee was preaching, at this place, an armed mob forced their way into the church, seized him and two other ministers who were with him, Rev. J. Richardson and Rev. J. M. McLean, and after abusing and insulting them, finally decided that they should be taken out of the County. Mr. Fee was struck on the head and considerably injured. On the way out - a distance of about ten miles - every opportunity was improved by the mob to insult and abuse their victims, and they heralded through the neighborhood they passed they had three horse-thieves, and nigger-thieves, that they were going to lynch.

The mob was composed of the lowest class of Kentuckians, and all of them drunk; yet such is the state of public opinion that it would be useless to prosecute.

This has long been an Anti-Slavery place, but the immediate cause of the outrage was the attempt to establish a school there. Schools are regarded as most dangerous and incendiary institutions in this part of Kentucky.

30Dec1879

Criminals and their deeds

Proceeding In Criminal Cases - Offenses Reported Yesterday


Mount Vernon, Ky. Dec. 30 - There was a bloody ending of a long-standing feud in Rock Castle County to-day. About 1 p.m. at Pine Hill, William A. Owens shot and killed James Langford. They had been deadly enemies for years. In 1868, Owens killed Langford’s brother Henry. Owens was tried and acquitted, since which time Langford has several times to kill him. Once he emptied the contents of a shot-gun into Owens’s back as he was fleeing for his life. At another time he chased Owens several miles on horseback, when the latter only escaped by taking to the woods. To-day they met and quarreled at the store of A. P. Ricketts, at Pine Hill, and Owens, being unarmed, ran to his house and got a double-barreled shotgun and a navy revolver. Returning, he met Langford on the road, and after emptying both barrels of his gun at his enemy drew his pistol and emptied four chambers of that. Langford fell at the first fire. The contents of both gun barrels entered his body, and three pistol balls passed through his brain. His own large navy revolver was found strapped to his body with all of the chambers loaded, and if is presumed that he had no chance to use it. A warrant for murder was issued against Owens, and it is thought that he will not attempt to escape. His victim bore a desperate character, was about 40 years of age, and was the son of one of the first settlers in the county. In 1874 John Pickens was shot from the bushes while on his way home. Owing to his remarkable resemblance to Owens, Langford was charged with the murder, it being supposed that he mistook his man. He fled, but was captured near Kansas City, Mo., in 1876, was brought to this state for trial, an acquitted, though the acquittal did not alter the common belief in his guilt. Besides the shooting affray with Owens some years ago, Langford has been mixed up with other bloody affairs, and the manner of his death to-day surprises no one.
9Feb1880

A Family of Murderers

One Of Kentucky’s Celebrated Cases - Grove Kennedy Convicted Of Manslaughter - His Family’s Remarkable Record

Cincinnati, Feb 8 - The conviction of Grove Kennedy for manslaughter, a verdict of 21 years in the Penitentiary, announced from Rock Castle, Ky., mark the end of one of Kentucky’s celebrated criminal cases. In February, 1877, Kennedy became involved in a lawsuit with his uncle E. D. Kennedy, which engendered a bitter feeling. After the adjournment of the court at Lancaster one day, he took his station in the vestibule, and as the old man came out leveled his pistol and shot him three times through the head. On his way to to jail he escaped from the guard, his wife standing between him and their guns, and calling on the officers to shoot her, but not her husband. He was finally recaptured and tried in December, 1877, but there was no verdict. The next June he was tried again, convicted, and sentenced to imprisonment for life. This sentence was reversed by the Court of Appeals. The case was then changed to the Rock Castle Circuit, where a conclusion was just reached. The Kennedy family is well connected and famous for its fighting qualities. E. D. Kennedy, murdered by Grove, killed two men; Grove killed two. Grove’s brother, John H., killed two; another brother killed one; his brother-in-law killed a Negro, and was pardoned by Gov. Blackburn; another brother-in-law attacked Sam Conn, and in the fight both were killed; Andy Kennedy and a half brother, Henry Yeaky, were both killed in personal encounters; an illegitimate son of E. D. Kennedy also killed his man. Convictions followed several of these murders, but pardon’s by the Governor were secured in nearly all cases. It is not thought that Grove Kennedy will serve out his term.
22Sep1880

Crime and Its Results


Paint Lick, Ky. Sept. 21 - A deadly encounter with knives took place at a house of ill-fame seven miles from here, in Rock Castle County, on Saturday night, between James Rodus and James Hardin. Rodus and a woman were fighting, when Hardin interfered. Rodus was killed outright and Hardin received a slight wound on the head.
28Dec1885

For an old murder


Sedalia, Mo., Dec. 27 - James L. Sigmond, a brother of one of the most prominent citizens of the (Petis) county, was brought to the city last night my a detective and turned over to the Sheriff of Rock Castle County, Ky., to which place he will be taken to answer for a murder committed 25 years ago. The prisoner was arrested at his home in Trenton, Grunday County, where he has resided for 10 years. After committing the murder he entered the Union Army, and at the close of the war he came to this county, where he resided until his whereabouts was discovered by detectives, when he fled, going to Trenton. He is now an old man and the father of quite a large family.
18Mar1887

Three men shot dead

While Engaged In Whipping An Old Woman Of Seventy


Crab orchard, Ky. March 17 - Near Wilde, a small town in Rock Castle County, three men were last night shot to death while doing vigilance duty by whipping Mrs. Eliza Fish, a feeble woman 70 years old, for selling liquor. Mrs. Fish had a foster son named Puritt, who was a worthless kind of a fellow. By some means he got hold of a little money and started a store at which he surreptitiously sold liquor. Rock Castle is a prohibition county. The Vigilantes, or Kluklux, who masquerade under the name of a law and order club succeeded in running Pruitt out of the county, and then the old lady, Mrs. Fish, took up his business. She was warned anonymously several times, and not long ago she was whipped by the Kluklux. She did not give up, however, and last night the Kuklux called on her again. As far as can be ascertained she was aroused about 10 o’clock by a dozen or more men, armed with hickory switches. They took her into the back yard and while some of them held her others laid the witches on her back.

During the performance a fusillade of shots came from the road side of the fence, and when the smoke cleared away John Long, Walter Turpin, and John Hasty were found dead in the yard. The excitement is intense and it is hard to get anything definite. Wilde is a long ways off, away from civilization almost, and so far as known has no telegraph wire.
4Aug1896

A famous old silver mine

Believed To Have Been Discovered In Kentucky After Many Years


Richmond, Ky., Aug. 3 - What is believed to be the celebrated Swift silver mine has been discovered on Roundstone Creek, thirty-five miles south of here, in rock Castle County.

The ore is combined with lead and smelts at $65 a ton. Down several feet below the ledge were found crucibles and other implements, which leads to the belief that the mine has been worked in the past.

Old residents say the situation tallies exactly with the description left in Swift’s chart.


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