Negro Boy Is Lynched By Sumter Mob

Source Type: Newspaper
Publisher: The Montgomery Advertiser
Place of publication: Montgomery, Alabama
Date of publication: 1916-01-26

Repeated Robberies of Miss Peale’s Store Result in Swift Action at Dawn

(Special to The Advertiser)


Richard Burton, sixteen-year-old negro, was lynched by a mob near Boyd Station, Sumpter county, and Lige Burton, his cousin, and Steve Knight, two other young negroes, are in jail here as a result of the robberies of the store of Miss Kate Peale, thirteen miles from Boyd’s. The lynching was done quietly between midnight last night and daylight this morning. The young negro’s body was riddled with bullets as was the tree from a limb of which his body dangled. A plow-line was used by the lynchers.


Seat For Brother

Miss Peale, who lives with her mother and sisters, operates a small store about fifty yards from her home. Five times recently the store has been robbed.

Willis Peale who lives just across the Mississippi state line. Peale was at the home last night when noises were heard at the store. Investigating, he found three negroes breaking into the store. Two of the negroes, escaped, Peale catching Richard Burton.

Burton attacked Peale with a knife, severely and seriously stabbing him repeatedly in the head, face, and neck. But the latter held on and overpowered the negro. Miss Peale assisted her brother and tied the negro, hand and foot, with a rope. Neighbors were called and Clarence Dial, a nearby resident started to Livingston with the negro in charge. A mob, which had been quietly formed, overtook Dial and his prisoner one mile from the scene of the crime, and Dial was advised to “make tracks for home” which he did.

Early this morning Sheriff E. C. Godfrey was notified that the negro’s body was hanging from a limb of a tree. He found the body riddled with bullets, as was the tree to which it was hanging. Shot, buckshot, and pistol balls filed the body and the tree trunk. Steve Knight and Lige Burton, the names of whom were given by Richard Burton before the lynching, have been arrested and are in jail here. Sheriff Godfrey and Coroner T.S. Scale have empaneled a jury and are making strenuous efforts to identify members of the mob that lynched the negro. Both say they will see these men are brought to trial as soon as identities can be established.