Search America's historic newspaper pages from 1789-1924 or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory to find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present. Chronicling America is sponsored jointly by the
National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress. external link Learn more
Image provided by: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL
Newspaper Page Text
By Clarence Fisher.,
The life prisoner was little more
than a boy in years. To Mollie, the
daughter of the warden, he had the
saddest and most ' interesting face
that she had ever seen. She had seen
him twice, when she had gone into
her father's office while the convicts
were exercising in the prison yard
outside. She asked him about the'
"Jeff Lowndes?" inquired the old
warden, frowning. "You'd best not
"Turn Back or 1 Fire!"
interest yourself in him, Mollie.
There's other 'liters' maj get their
sentences commuted - some day, but
he never will."
"What did he do, "father?" asked
"He murdered a man in cold blood,
Moll, dear. Cut his enemy's throat
while helay sleeping, because he had
been. unable- to meet -his .mortgage
and save"" liis mathefs farm. Poqr
woman! She died before the ver
dict was rendered, confident of her
"He doesn't look like a murderer,
father," said Mollie.
But it was morbid to let her
thoughts dwell on' any of the prison
ers. Why was she thinking of him
tonight as she crouched beside the
upper window, watching keenly the
winding road that led to Haiters?
Downstairs her father sat before the
prison gates, his rifle across his
knees. There ,had been ominous ru
mors, in town of a lynching party, to
kill the negro who now cowered in
the furthest cell of the prison, charg
ed with an unspeakable crime. But
old Warden Davis was of stern stuff
and he had let it be known that he
would lose his life before he lost his
prisoner. However, he had tele
phoned to the capital for a militia
Something stirred along the wind
ing road and the low, muttering mur
mur of an angry mob came to the
girl faintly. She flew downstairs.
"Father, they're coming!" she ex
claimed. "Go back to the house, Moll," he
"But they'll kill you!" she cried.
"They won't get Washington," an
swered the old warden. "At least
not till they do me. Get back, girl!"
Mollie dared not disobey. She
waited at the office door. The
warden was alone, for the six. guards
had all joined the mob. It would
have been worth their lives to have
offered resistance. t And they, too,
were .imbued with 'the strong senti
ment of vengeance upon, the black
The murmur swelled into a din and
a mob of men came racing up the
road that led-to the prison. Many
were masked, and in their hands they
carried heavy beams, capable of bat
tering in the oaken doors. The war
den stood facing them.
"Give up, Davis," yelled the fore
most of them. "Give up that nigger