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.ss vVjgiyfcfcgp '.pite"?;-,Myy.,?j ''-??-'t7,l
sTwice sb.g-h.as been--'convicted of
murdering an aged, defenseless man.
Hot -words between; Monroe" Bess,
T. son-in-law to "Sis" Johnson, and
2mes Whittington, on the latter's
arm, several years ago, was the be
ginning of the trouble.--
Bess is said to have left the field
and reported his troubles to his
mother-in-law. Sister Johnson then
armed herself and went to the Whit
tington home with Bess, her two
sons, Johnnie and. Zeke, and her
daughter, Mary Bess.
Monroe Bess, the prosecution
claims, stepped onto the porch of
the Whittington home and shot John
Whittington to death. As Whitting
ton fell he fired on Zeke Johnson,
who was instantly killed.
It' was then that Sister Johnson
fired a load of buckshot into the
breast -of James Whittington, aged
father of the family, as he started to
rise from his chair.
Bess made his escape and was at
.liberty for two years. He was cap
tured in Missouri and, on pleading
guilty to manslaughter, was sentenc
ed to twenty years in the state
Sister Johnson faced trial first in
the spring of 1911 and was convicted
of murder,- the jury recommending
mercy. Her attorneys won an appeal
for a new trial; but when the case
was brought up the second time the
introduction of the dying declaration
of the woman's victim convicted her
of murder in the first degree, with
out recommendation for mercy. Un
der the laws of Florado, this calls
for the extreme penalty of death.
r Sister Johnson sits in her cell to
day Mullen and apparently indifferent
to her fate.
While few persons sympathize with
her any more than she seems to with
herself, thousands have lifted their
voiccs in appeal for the pardon of the
two other murderesses.
Zurs. ilagdnlena Ferola, now in
c-;,. c -,- o'v-ming a death cell
vliicl . z especially constructed for i
her, will be the "first -woman: executed
in New York in fifteen years. Mfn
Isters'and women's clubs are pleading
with District Attorney Martin to pre
vent the killing of frs. Ferola, on the
ground that no woman ever again
should be put to death in that state.
Mrs. Ferola has a. little daughter
11 years old and a son 22 years old.
It will be -the tragedy of the daugh
ter's life, when she. grows old enough
to realize it, that it' was she who iden
tified the butcher's knife with which
Mrs. Ferola. is said to have killed
Carmello Canestrano, the lover who
For Mrs. Bessie' Wakefield, sen
tenced in Connecticut for the murder
of the husband who mistreated and
abused .her and Tier children, there
has been the greatest campaign of
sympathy ever aroused inr-this coun
try for a murderess. Two little babies
will be left motherless if she is
The last on the list, Mrs. Cynthia
Buffum of Little Valley, N. Y., is of
a different sort. She is charged and
convicted of having fed her whole
family poison with their food, in or
der that she might be freed, from
them and give her love wholly to a
handsome farm hand- employed by
Her husband and two of the chil
dren died, and for their murder Mrs.
Buffum herself must face death in
the electric chair.
EXECUTIONS OF AMERICAN
WOMEN IN RECENT YEARS
Mrs. Martha Place Executed at
Sing Sing in' March, 1899, for' the
murder of her stepdaughter, Ida' M.
Mrs. Mary Farmer Electrocuted in
New York in 1909 for the murder of
Virginia Christian Executed -'in
1912 at Richmond, Va.
Mrs. Elna Cusumano Electrocuted
in state's prison at Charlestowfi,