Press enter after choosing selection

The Ku-klux Investigation

The Ku-klux Investigation image
Parent Issue
Public Domain
OCR Text

Judge Van Tromp, oí the Ku-Kluj ■ .mniittee, authovizes (ho stuteuiont ;hat the rccently published reporl oi tho committee's investigations in South Caro na KM antros in many cssentiul pardculars, and perversioM uffiictsinotlicrs, evidently colorod for tho iiurpose of iroducing pivrtisan and falso imprcssiuus. The testimony gliows that there aro four coüntios- Lattren, Chester, York and Spartansburg - where thort; have been acts of vio'e:ice, and tho Ku-Klux oommitted raimv outrajies. The testimony givon by the negroos was of the lowest kind, and uttorly unwoi-ihy of belief. They were attracted by the fee of two dollars per diem, and in many cases wre evidently drilled for the occasion. At Spartansburg numbers of them wero oongregated in the poetofflee while waiting to bo called as wituesseB, and doubtless learned the lesson which was aftcrwavds ruhoarsi'd substantilly in the samo words by vuri'His negroes who pretended to havo been punished. Bnt one was stripped, and one white man at Columbia, while olaiming to hu a refugee on ::. rount of terror, wee holding an office there ut the expense of the State. His iictitious wounds had been healed with that piaster. In the radical statement it is broadly alleped that ton negroes were taken from the jail in Chester and naurdered ly an armed band, but the facts connectod with this transacticn are uil intentionally aup pressed for effect. ïhey were as follows : A company of twonty-five negroes appeared in that neighborhood and openly anaounced their tatontion to shoot the fii-st white man they should meet. Soon aftel druynian named btevens, with 011e arm, who was univcrsally regarded as a worthy and amiable man, was driving along the road witli a barrelof whisky on bis c.irt. He was stopped by this band of ruffians and the whisky demanded. He told them it was not iiis property, bnt gave tlicni a fiask of his oivn, and Bt&rted again. After going a short difltanco tho negroes nred at his eart and struek it in several places. A man who had joined Stevens on the road iled for bis lifo, and he himself, seeing arme i negroos in purguit, abandoned his cart and sought refuge in a neigh boring hut. He was folio wcil by the wretohes, and againsttheefForts of a negro woman, whose humble shelter he had sought, and his owii, he was taken out, and after drawiug lots iive of tbc party took hini into tho woods and riddled his body with balls. The perpetrators of this outrago were arrestad and put in the Chester iail, but bofore bcing securcd they killed the Deputy Shcrilf, Bmith, who served the procoss. Bnddenly a negro carne from Columbia with what puiportod to be a writ of habeaê corpus trom a Kadieal Judge, Thomas, at Columbia, but whioh waa attested in no proper forni. The SherifF callrd into council landing lawyers in order to determine the eourse to pursne in regard to this informal and irregular reijuisition, which bore no eviden:o of genuineness and came in an envelope of the Adam Express Coicpany. Mcantime the news spread, and the Vigilanue Couimittce, roused into indigimtion, and knowing how Gov. Scott had pardoned the worst crimináis by hundreds, and believing it to be a triek to cariy off the murderers, determined to adininistcr stern justice themselves by making an example to check outlawry. They took the prisoners out of the jail by foree and oxecuted them suiumarily. One of the number was released by the deelaraüon ui a white man that he was believed to bo inuoci nt of the atrocious crime ot' which the othuis were guilty. Wliile this act of vengeance is deprecated the exh-aonlinarv provooution and alarm ereated by armed blaeks, as well as their violence, must be considered in eonnection with it. Other statements might be exposed with cqual effect, but this illustration is sutKciont for present purposes. One of the prinoipaJ witnesses, Q&med O wen, on cross-examination ïAnitted himself athief Congressman Wullacc, who was elected first by tho House of Kupresentativcs, and then by stutfed uallots in a district havin;; 5,000 Democratie niüjority, fbllowed the committee everywhero and was ono of the active managers in getting up testinioiiv. The uifair in wbich ho figured at Spartansburg, which was telegraphed all over the country as a gmss outrage, exhibits the purpose to magnify and exaggerate the most insignificant incidente for political etfoct. He was scatod next to Mr. Stuvenson, of the comuiitteo, at a hotel table, when a man named Berry, who forinerly had a feud with Wallace, entered in a state of intoxication. Dis hoveling his old i-neiny be seized a "pitcher of milk and threw it at him, whereupon AV allace drew a revolver and would have fired but for the intervention of those present. This was the end of tliat outrage, and Berry when sobered sought to make every atonemont, as citizens did wlio were injured by his rookless conduct. There is no political foelinjr of uny kind in tho unfortuiKite disturbances which have OCOUrred in tiuse few counties of South Carolina. They resolted froni uiiijadininistration, corriiption, robbery, o irpet-bagism, and e-pecially amone the poor laboring white menfrom the wicked purposo on the part of the authorities and Legislature to as-ert black supremaOT and degrade them svifh negro rule. Thi's is with them perhapa the real and most sfïrioiïs difficulty. It is a (juestiou of race, which os South Carolina is now administered and sustained by Federal power threatene the ravest consequences. The white mecaanic and laborer, when he finds the worst crime protcted and pardoned, the law an engiiw of penecutim mul politica] power, abuscid in order to oppresa him with negro dominatioti and to out rage his wife and children, will ropist, be the sucritice whut it may. He inay be uneducated and plain, but he is stili American and proud of his raee.


Old News
Michigan Argus