Source Type: Newspaper
Publisher: The New York Times
Place of publication: New York, New York
Date of publication: 1884

COLUMBUS,MISS, JAN.4, — Last Saturday evening at Alta, on the Georgia Pacific railroad, Mr. Wm. B.Pope was shot and seriously wounded by a negro named Lewis Austin. Mr. Pope left this city that afternoon, and just before reaching Alta, in passing through the car, he was jostled by Austin, who, when spoken to by pope, attempted to strike Pope with a pair of brass knucks. The lick was warded off and the trouble quieted by the parties being separated. At Alta, Pope was warned that the negro would make an attempt upon his life, and armed himself with a pistol. Upon alighting from the train he was confronted by Austin, who had a pistol in his hand and fired at Pope twice, one of the shots striking him in the thumb and the other in the right breast above the nipple. producing a dangerous wound. Pope fired at Austin three times without effect. Preparations were made to remove Pope to this city, but as the telegraph office of the Georgia Pacific Railroad had closed, it became necessary to send a negro on a mule from Fern Bank to Columbus, twenty miles. The messenger only reached Columbus about 4’0’clock Sunday. The wounded man was brought here and is in no danger whatever. Austin was pursued by a party organized at Alta and captured Sunday. He was forthwith strung up to a limb by a rope and his body fired full of bullet-holes. He was allowed to hang until 5 o’clock Sunday evening, all the negroes being afraid to cut him down. A jury was impaneled by a Walker county Justice, acting in the capacity of Coroner, and brought the following unique verdict:

“We find that Lewis Austin came to his death by being hung and shot, this the 30th day of December.”