Saturday, June 18, 2022

Colored Man Has Hair-Raising Time in Eluding a Mob -- June 18, 2022

Chicago Broad Ax, 03-June-1922

The Broad Ax was an African-American owned newspaper. I was surprised to learn that there was such a thing in Salt Lake City in 1897. In 1899, owner Julius F Taylor moved the newspaper to Chicago. The appeal to the Governor did not work, so Jim Denson was legally hanged on 17-June-1922.


Macon. Ga. -- Jim Denson, colored youth, whose appeal from a death sentence was carried without avail to the Supreme Court of the United States, and who early this week narrowly escaped lynching at the hands of a mob, is safe at the present time in Bibb county's "mob proof" jail.

"I'se sho' mighty proud to be here," was Jim's smiling comment, even though the sentence to be hanged June 16 for an alleged attack on an aged white woman three years ago still stares him in the face.

Jim however had some reason to smile beyond his escape from the mob, because numerous white-people in this and Wilkinson county, believing his escape was an act of Providence, were considering an appeal to Governor Hardwick for commutation to life imprisonment.

Story of His Escape

The colored man, after having safely settled himself in the jail here, told the story of his escape, which, in addition to the details of the mob s action in breaking into the jail, at Irwinton early Tuesday, ran as follows:

"They tied a rope around my neck. Then they dragged me into the automobile. I asked them to let me pray and they replied that they hadn't time.

"I heard them say they would shoot me just out of town. The knot on the rope around my neck was choking me. I reached up my hand in the dark and felt the slip-knot. I untied it. The automobile was going thirty miles an hour, and I says to myself, Jim jump or be kilt' I jumped feet first, flam-flooy, and I hit the ground on my feet and then on my head and then I must have flopped over four times and rolled into the ditch.

"When I got out of the ditch several shots were fired at me. I crawled, but they kept on firing. I got up again and ran. I was barefooted, my clothes were torn off me, and the gravel cut my feet."

Hounds Are Too Numerous

The colored man said he obtained bread from another colored man at sunup and then crawled into a swamp, where he spent the day and night Growing hungry, he said he crawled out to eat some wild plums and then he heard bloodhounds on his trail.

"Pretty soon a white hound came upon me," the colored man continued. "I kept jumpin' from one side of the creek to the other. I couldn't shake him off. He got right up to my heels so I stopped, snapped my fingers at him. and, lawdy -- he curled his tail and walked right -up to me. I took off my belt and tied him to me."

The colored man had the hound tied to him, was playing with a second hound and was fighting off a third when the sheriff's posse reached him.

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