Horrible Murders

January 18, 1896


A married couple is murdered because the husband was a white man and the wife a black woman.


The murder of Patrick Morris, a white railroad hand and his colored wife near West Wego Wharf, Texas, a few miles from New Orleans, on the night of January 11, 1896, was horrible.
The only alleged crime was that of living honorably with his colored wife. For this his body was riddled with bullets. His wife shared the same fate.
What think the liberal-minded element of this, the latest outrage?
We confess that we are appalled at the reckless disregard of human life, especially noticeable in the South. A premium is set upon immorality. White men who live dishonorably with their Negro mistresses are not liable to punishment. Those who take on the bonds of wedlock are ostracized and murdered. It is surprising that this white man did not better defend himself.
It is to be regretted that the woman' relatives did not take up the case of the defenseless female. But the worst part is contained in the fact that the murderers will not be punished. The lynchers are protected by public sentiment, if not by the law, and it requires to a great extent the cooperation of the public sentiment in the South in order to secure an execution of the law. Gauge it as we will it is apparent that lynch-law must be made to go or the super-structure of our government will fall to rise no more.
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Lower Left Quadrant


Contributed By

Liam Eynan


“Horrible Murders,” Black Virginia: The Richmond Planet, 1894-1909, accessed September 25, 2022, https://blackvirginia.richmond.edu/items/show/1685.