History, 1838–1856, volume E-1 [1 July 1843–30 April 1844]

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction
Page 1948
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<​March 31.​> to , and have him apprehended. [HC 6:283]
1 April 1844 • Monday
<​April 1.​> Monday 1. In the court room in the mansion, Mr. J. Easton was brought up as being accessory to whipping Chism; referred the case to ; on investigation it appeared to the satisfaction of the Court, that he had been on trial for the same offence before and acquitted. I extract from the Neighbor.
“After the court dismissed the case, Gen. Smith fearlessly stated that he believed that it was a plot on the part of those who were instrumental in getting up the previous trial, to thwart the ends of justice, and screen the prisoner from the condemnation he justly deserves. then stated by way of an apology, that at the time he issued the warrant, he did not know that the prisoner was under an arrest, or that there was any process out against him. We hope for the honor of such a man as , that his statement is true. , however, called upon one of his jurors, Mr. [Daniel] Carn, to corroborate what he had said; but to our astonishment, he replied that when summoned him to appear and act as a juryman, that he was not informed what case he was to act upon, nor did he learn till he entered the office, where he acted according to the evidence given, but believed then as well as now, that it was a sham trial, and a mere mockery of justice. We state facts as they are, and let the public judge for themselves. [HC 6:284] The statement of the negro was that Messrs. Easton, Townsend, and Lawyer , were the persons engaged in this diabolical affair; Mr. Gibbs one of the witnesses against Townsend, believed the above persons were engaged in it; but as a negro knows nothing in this , and Mr Gibbs could not positively swear to it— of course we don’t know; but we have our opinion and so have the public; we don’t remember of ever having seen more indignation manifest than was manifested on this occasion, and the public mind is not satisfied at the turn affairs have taken. Lynch law will not do in , and those who engage in it must expect to be visited by the wrath of an indignant people; not according to the rules of Judge Lynch; but according to law and equity.”
We are glad to see the laws of the land enforced to the very letter; but we are decidedly opposed to the Lynch law in any shape whatever, or to any individual or set of individuals, taking the law into their own hands. We are for equal rights and privileges, and even-handed justice; but we hate oppression, tyranny and mobocracy, let it come from what source it may.
We have no right to say whether or not the negro is guilty of the crime alledged against him, but if he is, we sincerely hope that the laws of our may be enforced upon him, that he may be thus brought to justice.
Indeed, we regret that it has become our duty to record such an outrage, as having taken place in our or its vicinity, and hope that we [p. 1948]
March 31. to , and have him apprehended. [HC 6:283]
1 April 1844 • Monday
April 1. Monday 1. In the court room in the mansion, Mr. J. Easton was brought up as being accessory to whipping Chism; referred the case to ; on investigation it appeared to the satisfaction of the Court, that he had been on trial for the same offence before and acquitted. I extract from the Neighbor.
“After the court dismissed the case, Gen. Smith fearlessly stated that he believed that it was a plot on the part of those who were instrumental in getting up the previous trial, to thwart the ends of justice, and screen the prisoner from the condemnation he justly deserves. then stated by way of an apology, that at the time he issued the warrant, he did not know that the prisoner was under an arrest, or that there was any process out against him. We hope for the honor of such a man as , that his statement is true. , however, called upon one of his jurors, Mr. [Daniel] Carn, to corroborate what he had said; but to our astonishment, he replied that when summoned him to appear and act as a juryman, that he was not informed what case he was to act upon, nor did he learn till he entered the office, where he acted according to the evidence given, but believed then as well as now, that it was a sham trial, and a mere mockery of justice. We state facts as they are, and let the public judge for themselves. [HC 6:284] The statement of the negro was that Messrs. Easton, Townsend, and Lawyer , were the persons engaged in this diabolical affair; Mr. Gibbs one of the witnesses against Townsend, believed the above persons were engaged in it; but as a negro knows nothing in this , and Mr Gibbs could not positively swear to it— of course we don’t know; but we have our opinion and so have the public; we don’t remember of ever having seen more indignation manifest than was manifested on this occasion, and the public mind is not satisfied at the turn affairs have taken. Lynch law will not do in , and those who engage in it must expect to be visited by the wrath of an indignant people; not according to the rules of Judge Lynch; but according to law and equity.”
[p. 1948]
Page 1948