Ora Catherine Miller was born 6/28/1869 in Grassy Creek, Madison County, NC to Anderson Miller, aka Ance Miller (DOB 11/1834 in Old Buncombe County in an area that is now known as Madison County, NC; DOD 3/1907 in Madison County, NC) and Cynthia Hickam (DOB 11/1841 in Old Buncombe County in an area that is now known as Madison County, NC; DOD 10/12/1929 in Hot Springs, Madison County, NC).
1870 U.S. Census of Township 9 Hot Springs, Madison County, NC, Roll M593-1147, Pg 441, Image 186, Lines 29-35, Dwelling 32, Family 32, "Millus, Anderson" (sic)
Millus, Anderson (sic), 34 yrs old, M, W, Farmer, $0 Real Estate Value, $200 Personal Estate Value, Born in NC
Millus, Cintha, 28 yrs old, F, W, Keeping House, Born in NC
Millus, Robert, 7 yrs old, M, W, At Home, Born in NC
Millus, Sarah, 5 yrs old, F, W, At Home, Born in NC
Millus, Ara (sic, should be Ora), 3 yrs old, F, W, At home, Born in NC
Millus, George, 11/12 mos old, M, W, At home, Born in NC
Millus, Mary, 72 yrs old, F, W, At home, Born in NC
1880 U.S. Census of Pine Creek, Madison County, NC, Roll T9-971, Family History Film 1254971, Pg 95.3000, ED 129, Image 0360, Lines 4-12, Dwelling 61, Family 61, "Miller, Anderson"
Miller, Anderson, W(hite), M(ale), 45 yrs old, Head, Married, Farmer, Can read & write, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC (DOB would have been 1835)
Miller, Scyntha (sic), W, F, 36 yrs old, Wife, Married, Keeping House, Born in NC, Father born in TN, Mother born in NC (DOB would have been 1844)
Miller, Robert, W, M, 18 yrs old, Son, Single, Farm Laborer, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC (DOB would have been 1862)
Miller, Sarah, W, F, 15 yrs old, Daughter, Single At Home, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC (DOB would have been 1865)
Miller, Orry, W, F, 12 yrs old, Daughter, Single, At Home, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC (DOB would have been 1868)
Miller, George, W, M, 10 yrs old, Son, Single, At Home, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC (DOB would have been 1870)
Miller, Hester, W, F, 6 yrs old, Daughter, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC (DOB would have been 1874)
Miller, Carrie, W, F, 4 yrs old, Daughter, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC (DOB would have been 1876)
Miller, Florrence (sic), W, F, 1 yrs old, Daughter, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC (DOB would have been 1879)
Ora married Stephen Edward Huff. Ed Huff was born 6/15/1869 in TN to Thomas Huff and Eliza "Lizzie" Spencer.
Ora and Ed were married 1/6/1889 in Madison County, NC.
North Carolina, Marriage Records, 1741-2011
Name: Edward Huff
Birth Year: abt 1870
Marriage Date: 6 Jan 1889
Marriage Place: Madison, North Carolina, USA
Spouse: Iva Miller (sic)
Spouse Gender: Female
Spouse Race: White
Spouse Age: 20
Event Type: Marriage
1880 U.S. Census of Big Creek, Cocke County, Tennessee; Roll: 1248; Family History Film: 1255248; Page: 317B; Enumeration District: 058, Lines 12-19, "Thomas Huff"
Thomas Huff, W(hite), M(ale), 30 yrs old (DOB 1850), Head, Married, Farmer, Born in TN, Both parents born in TN
Eliza Huff, W, F, 26 yrs old (DOB 1854), Wife, Keeping house, Married, Born in TN, Father born in VA, Mother born in TN
Cordine E. Huff (sic, looks like Caroline to me), W, F, 11 yrs old (DOB 1869), At Home, Born in TN, Both parents born in TN
Stephen E. Huff, W, M, 9 yrs old (DOB 1871), Son, At Home, Born in TN, Both parents born in TN
Sarah Huff, W, F, 7 yrs old (DOB 1873), Daughter, At Home, Born in TN, Both parents born in TN
James A. Huff, W, M, 5 yrs old (DOB 1875), Son, At Home, Born in TN, Both parents born in TN
Susan Huff, W, F, 3 yrs old (DOB 1877), Daughter, At Home, Born in TN, Both parents born in TN
John I. Huff, W, M, 4/12 mos old (DOB 1880), Son, At Home, Born in TN, Both parents born in TN
1900 U.S. Census of Clinton, Civil District 6, Anderson County, Tennessee; Roll: T623_ 1557; Page: 8A; Enumeration District: 7, Lines 43-50, "Edward Huff"
A.A. Hawkins (Jailer), Head, W(hite), M(ale), Born Nov, 1872, 27 yrs old, Single, Born in TN, Both parents born in TN, Jailer, Can read and write
James Huff, Prisoner, W, M, Born Oct, 1877, 22 yrs old, Single, Born in TN, Both parents born in TN, Farmer, Can read and write
Edward Huff, Prisoner, W, M, Born June, 1873, 26 yrs old, Married 9 yrs (DOM 1891), Born in TN, Both parents born in TN, Farmer, Can read and write
Jessie M. Rice, Prisoner
Robert McEwin, Prisoner
Thomas Osborne, Prisoner
John Osborne, Prisoner
Samuel H. Barton, Prisoner
next page are 9 more prisoners
1900 U.S. Census of Civil District 1, Cocke County, Tennessee; Roll: T623_ 1562; Page: 5A; Enumeration District: 158, Lines 6-11, "Arry Huff" (sic)
Arry Huff, Head, W(hite), F(emale), Born Feby, 1874, 26 yrs old, Married 11 yrs (DOM 1889, Ora was 15 yrs old), 4 children with 4 still living, Born in NC, Both parents born in NC, No occupation, Can read and write, Rents home
Melvin Huff, Son, W, M, Born Feb, 1890, 10 yrs old, Born in TN, Father born in TN, Mother born in NC
Maggie P. Huff, Daughter, W, F, Born June, 1893, 6 yrs old, Born in TN, Father born in TN, Mother born in NC
Claude H. Huff, Son, W, M, Born June, 1895, 4 yrs old, Born in TN, Father born in TN, Mother born in NC
Ethel Huff, Daughter, W, F, Born April, 1900, 8/12 mos old, Born in TN, Father born in TN, Mother born in NC
Charley Gregg, Servant, W, M, Born March, 1886, 14 yrs old, Born in NC, Father born in TN, Mother born in NC
1910 Census of Hot Springs, Madison County, NC, Roll T624-1107, Pg 8B, ED 30, Image 263, Lines 51-57, Dwelling 150, Family 164, "Huff, Ed"
Huff, Ed (also indexed as Ed Harff), Head, M(ale), W(hite), 36 yrs old, First marriage 19 yrs, Born in TN, Father born in TN, Mother born in TN, Laborer in logging for wages, Can read & write, rents home
Huff, Isa (sic, should be Ora Huff), Wife, F, W, 38 yrs old, First marriage, married 19 yrs, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC
Huff, Maggie, Daughter, F, W, 14 yrs old, Single, Born in TN, Father born in TN, Mother born in NC
Huff, Claud, Son, M, W, 12 yrs old, Born in TN, Father born in TN, Mother born in NC
Huff, Mattie R., Daughter, F, W, 7 yrs old, Born in TN, Father born in TN, Mother born in NC
Huff, Summer (sic, should be Swan Huff), Son, M, W, 7/12 mos old, Born in NC, Father born in TN, Mother born in NC
Wills, Dock, Boarder, M, W, 21 yrs old, single, Born in NC, Father born in TN, Mother born in TN, Logging camp for wages
1920 U. S. Census of Hot Springs, Madison County, NC, Roll T625-1294, Pg 15B, ED 116, Image 812, Lines 84-87, Dwelling 43, Family 43, "Huff, Edward"
Huff, Edward, Head, Owns home, M(ale), W(hite), 49 yrs old, Married, Can read & write, Born in TN, Father born in TN, Mother born in TN, Farmer of general farm
Huff, Iva (sic, should be Ora Huff), Wife, F, W, 48 yrs old, Married, Can read & write, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC
Huff, Mattie R., Daughter, F, W, 16 yrs old, Single, Can read and write, attends school, Born in TN, Father born in TN, Mother born in NC
Huff, Swan, Son, M, W, 8 yrs old, Single, Born in NC, Father born in TN, Mother born in NC
1930 U.S. Census of Hot Springs, Madison County, NC, Roll 1704, Pg 4A, ED 6, Image 705.0, Lines 31-36 , Dwelling 80, Family 88, "Huff, Ed"
Huff, Ed, Head, Owns home valued at $1,000, M(ale), W(hite, 61 yrs old, Married at age 19, Born in TN, Father born in TN, Mother born in TN, Laborer of odd jobs, for wages
Huff, Arrie (sic, should be Ora Huff), Wife, F, W, 61 yrs old, Married at age 19, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC
Huff, Swanson, Son, M, W, 21 yrs old, Single, Born in NC, Father born in NC (?), Mother born in NC
Lunsford, Mattie, Daughter, F, W 27 yrs old, Married at age 18, Born in NC, Father born in NC (?), Mother born in NC
Lunsford, Hoffman, Son (?, probably grandson), M, W, 7 yrs old, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC
Lunsford, Berniece, Daughter (?, probably granddaughter), F, W, 5 yrs old, Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in NC
They had 6 children than I'm aware of:
They had 6 children than I'm aware of:
1) Melvin Thomas Huff (DOB 2/28/1889 in Cocke County, TN; DOD 6/18/1963 in San Diego, San Diego County, CA) married 1st his landlady, Anna Emma Sutton (DOB 8/16/1887 in France; DOD 6/12/1927 in Detroit, Wayne County, MI). She was first married to ? Sharpe. She and Melvin married 1/17/1920 in Detroit, Wayne County, Michigan. They divorced when she brought charges of extreme cruelty against him on 1/23/1922 in Detroit, Wayne County, MI. She married a 3rd time to George Joseph Renshaw 2 days after her divorce came through, on 1/25/1922. She died 6 12/1927 and George Renshaw died in 1931. Melvin Huff then married 2nd, Dr. Miriam Margaret Poole (DOB 11/13/1892 in Drakesville, Iowa; DOD 8/16/1964 in Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, Ca). He was in the U.S. Army during WWI. His military career continued in the U.S. Marine Corps. Miriam was a medical doctor. He and Miriam married 9/21/1927 in North Compound, Methodist Mission, Tientsin, Tianjin Shiqu, Tianjin, China and came back to the USA 5/29/1928 to have their first child. They went back to China and their second child was born in China in 1932 and returned to the U.S. in 1937. They were divorced before the 1940 U.S. Census. They had two children: Thomas Anderson Huff (DOB 12/24/1928 in San Diego County, CA; DOD 11/13/2016 in Honolulu, Hawaii; married Caroline Carpenter and Barbara Downs) and Margaret Jean "Maggie" Huff (DOB 3/26/1932 in Peking, China; DOD 6/18/2016 in Ukiah, Mendocino County, CA; married Ralph H. Cooper). Melvin Huff married 3rd Helene Aucutt (DOB 10/22/1898 in ? ; DOD 7/14/1984 in Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, CA) on 10/7/1941 in Yuma, AZ. They divorced and she married William "Willie" "Willy" Bernard Stahl in 1958. Melvin T. Huff was an expert pistol shot and was in competitions across the nation.
2) Maggie Pauline Huff (DOB 6/11/1893 in Cocke County, TN; DOD 1/5/1923 in Madison County, NC) married Julius Wallin Pike (aka Julius William Pike) (DOB 10/18/1884 in NC; DOD 5/21/1948 in Madison County, NC). They had Clyde Robert Pike (DOB 1/9/1912 in Madison County, NC; DOD 8/4/2001 in Jacksonville, Duval County, FL; married Ora Simpson), Wade Edward Pike (DOB 2/26/1914 in Alexander, Buncombe County, NC; DOD 11/15/1997 in Asheville, Buncombe County, NC married Mary Charme Foster), George Ray Pike (George Roy Pike) (DOB 5/3/1916 in NC; DOD 9/12/1953 in Richmond, VA; married Lillian Wright). Maggie died of pneumonia as a result influenza.
3) Claude Hiram Huff (DOB 6/30/1895 in Madison County, NC; DOD 8/10/1954 in Madison County, NC) married Florence Madeline Chilton (DOB 8/6/1901 in Newport News, VA; DOD 9/26/1987 in Charlotte, Mecklenburg County, NC). They had Thelma Irene Huff (DOB 8/1/1923 in Warwick, VA; DOD 12/2/2002 in Hampton, VA; married James Gordon Mears Jr., Fred Norman Rector, Harry Edward Garris, Richard George Herrmann, ? Ballard), Hazel Jeanette Huff (DOB 1/8/1925 in Elizabeth City, VA; DOD 11/1/2008 in Eureka, Humboldt County, CA; married Albert John Tronti, Roger Wardell Brown), Bernice Louise Huff (DOB 3/17/1926 in Newport News, VA; DOD 8/15/1977 in LaPorte, Harris County, TX; married Elmer Ward Greene Jr., Richard Lee Wallace), Florence Geraldine "Jere" Huff (DOB 3/12/1929 in Warwick, VA; DOD ? in ? ; married John Gilbert Firth), Shirley Jacquelyn Huff (DOB 4/16/1931 in Newport News, VA; DOD 11/19/2007 in Winston-Salem, Forsyth County, NC; married Reilly Ellsworth Bowman III). Claude married 2nd Muriel Henderson (DOB 8/3/1920 in ? ; DOD 3/17/2009 in Hot Springs, Madison County, NC; she was also married to Edward McCall, Earnest Gene Autrey). Claude Hiram Huff served in WWI and died of a coronary occlusion.
4) Ethel Huff (DOB 4/1900 in NC; DOD After 1900 in Madison County, NC)
5) Mattie Ray Huff (DOB 9/1/1902 in Madison County, NC; DOD 12/30/1979 in Asheville, Buncombe County, NC) married Benjamin Franklin Luntsford (DOB 1/18/1898 in Jefferson City, Jefferson County, TN; DOD 10/23/1951 in Hot Springs, Madison County, NC). They had Huffman Benjamin Luntsford (DOB 11/23/1922 in Madison County, NC; DOD 10/26/2006 in Pensacola, Escambia County, FL; married Nettie Rebecca Harrison), and Bernice Luntsford (DOB 1/26/1925 in Madison County, NC; DOD 3/2/2016 in Hot Springs, Madison County, NC; married James Cecil Wright).
6) Swann Burnette Huff (aka Swan Burnette Huff, Swann Burnitt Huff)(DOB 10/9/1909 in Madison County, NC; DOD 3/28/1989 in Madison County, NC) married Nell Elizabeth Church (DOB 12/3/1909 in Madison County, NC; DOD 9/19/1996 in Asheville, Buncombe County, NC). They had Virginia Catherine Huff (DOB 11/14/1932 in Hot Springs, Madison County, NC; DOD 1/22/2003 in Durham, Durham County, NC; married Jack Holt, Harold Dean Anderson).
Ora Katherine Miller Lamb died 12/8/1935 in Hot Springs, Madison County, NC. She was buried on 12/10/1935 at Fairview Methodist Church Cemetery, Boys Home Rd (Rd 1453), Hot Springs, Madison County, NC, 28743.
NC Death Certificate #185, Registration District #58-30, Certificate #12, Ora Katherin Huff, DOD 12/8/1935, Hot Springs, Madison County, NC
Ora Katherin Huff (sic)
Residence: Hot Springs, Madison County, NC
Female, White, Married
Spouse: Edward Huff
DOB 6/28/1869 in Grass Creek, Madison County, NC, 66 yrs old, 4 mos, 14 days old
Father: Anderson Miller, Birthplace: Grass Creek, Madison county, NC
Mother: Cynthia Hill, Birthplace: Ivy, Madison county, NC
Informant: Edward Huff of Hot Springs, NC
DOD 12/8/1935 at 11:30pm
Physician attended deceased from 12/6/1935-12/8/1935 and death occurred 11:30pm
Cause of death: Chronic Myocarditis (coronary sclerosis) for years and Bright's Disease
Burial: Fairview on 12/10/1935
Undertaker: Davis-Dunn of Hot Springs, NC
Stephen Edward Huff died 9/22/1941 in Hot Springs, Madison County, NC. He is buried with his wife at Fairview Methodist Church cemetery.
NC Death Certificate #111, Registration District #9, Certificate #5, Edward Huff, DOD 9/22/1941 in Hot Springs, Madison County, NC
Died in Hot Springs, Madison County, NC
Lived in Hot Springs, Madison County, NC
M, W, Widowed, Born in 1868 in TN, 73 yrs old
Father: Tom Huff born in TN
Mother: Not known
Informant: Claude Huff of Hot Springs, NC
DOD 9/22/1941 at 9am
Physician last saw him alive on 9/22/1941, death occurred at 9am
Cause of death (illegible) "Ainise pui" (chronic nephritis)
Burial in Hot Springs on 9/23/1941
The Asheville Weekly Citizen, Asheville, NC, 11/23/1893, Pg 2
The Outrage on Ling Gun
A Full Investigation To Be Made
Attorneys Are Employed And The Case Will Be Placed Before Secretary Gresham-Ward and Morris Have Been Arrests
If surmises based upon a considerable array of facts prove correct, then there is a case at Paint Rock that will involve not only the authorities of Madison County, but perhaps the United States and China.
It will be remember that last week THE CITIZEN printed a letter received by Mayor Patton from D.W. Allen of Wolf Creek, Tenn., which letter stated that a Chinaman from Asheville was in the woods near there apparently demented and badly hurt. The letter said further that the Chinaman had been robbed and beaten, and gave the names of two persons who had a hand in the work.
After talking with the Chinese in this city it was concluded that the injured man was Ling Gun, who had left Asheville only a few days before on his way to Johnson City via Morristown. On Monday Special Deputy W.R. Gudger went down to Paint Rock to investigate the matter, taking with him Charlie Moon, a Chinaman, and James Johnson, a colored employee in George Wo’s laundry. The latter were taken along in the hope that if they were seen by Ling Gun he would recognize them and would not run-it having been said that the injured man would run from every person who tried to approach him.
Deputy Gudger and the two men who accompanied him came back Thursday afternoon. So far as getting a glimpse of Ling Gun was concerned, their visit was fruitless. The trip was not without results, however. Deputy Gudger told THE CITIZEN he arrested Carter Ward and Robert Morris, two young white men, on a charge of committing the assault on the Chinaman. The men were tried Tuesday afternoon before Justice Trent, who reserved his judgment until Wednesday afternoon. In the meantime the prisoners were locked up in jail at Marshall.
The story as told by Deputy Gudger reveals such a case of most inhuman treatment of a harmless, ignorant Chinaman, as would satisfy the most intense hatred of the coolies in the far West and Northwest. It appears that Ling Gun got on a westbound train at Asheville with the intention of going to Johnson City, Tenn. He got through to Paint Rock, the line between North Carolina and Tennessee, all right. He carried with him a card on which his destination was written. This, it is said, he showed to the conductor upon leaving Paint Rock, where a crew from the E.T., V. & G. road take charge of the train. The conductor could not understand Ling Gun’s talk when the latter wanted to pay his fare, and the result was that Ling Gun was ejected from the train. At this time the Chinaman was known to have a roll of money containing about $250 in bills. His assault followed, and, it is said, the two men arrested were seen committing the act. He was struck in the side with an axe, in the chest with a stone, and his arms and legs brutally lacerated by dogs that were set upon him. When the Chinaman could make his escape he did so, but he was in a most pitiable condition-halfcrazed by pain, in a rough country strange to him, and unable to speak English-and it is no cause for wonder that the injured man took to the woods.
Ling Gun was seen the next day after the assault, moving through the woods, and seeming ready to run at every sound, fearful, perhaps, lest it might be his tormentors coming back to torture him. But now he cannot be found - no trace of him. There are those who believe that he made his way into the dense thickets and there, out of sight or sound of human being, succumbed to his terrible wounds. There are still others who hint that Ling Gun was put out of the way by weighting his body and sinking it in the French Broad. Whichever may be the case, Ling Gun’s case will probably become one of importance before it is done with.
The Chinese here have employed Messrs. Gudger & Pritchard, attorneys, and the case is to be brought to the attention of the United States authorities and the Chinese minister at Washington. Mr. Pritchard, who came up from Marshall Thursday, has written to Secretary of State Gresham, placing the facts fully before him.
Marshall, N.C., Nov. 17 - [Special.] - Special Deputy Sheriff W.R. Gudger arrived on the noon train today having in custody W.A. Lawson, who is charged with being in the crowd that committed the assault on Ling Gun at Paint Rock a few days ago. All efforts to find the Chinaman have failed. It is generally believed that he has wandered off into the mountains and died from the effects of his wounds.
The parties now confined in jail will have a hearing at this place next Monday. Great indignation prevails among our people and every effort will be made to find the Chinaman and to convict the parties who committed the outrages.
Asheville Citizen Times, Asheville, NC, 11/27/1893, Pg 1
Hard On Ling Gun’s Trail
“Citizen” Man Finds Some Of His Clothes
The Poor Old Chinaman Was Struggling On Towards Knoxville When His Reason Seems To Have Left Him - Talks With Those Who Saw Him
In WOLF CREEK MOUNTAIN, seven miles from Paint Rock - Sunday night - [Special.] - Your correspondent found Ling Gun’s thin, big sleeved jacket on Slate Knob, one mile below here, at 1 o’clock today.
In half an hour the party had the two strips of black cloth that had been seen tied around the Chinaman’s feet; also his heavy, short coat and his outside blue trousers.
The garments were wet and frozen. The articles were found in the course toward Knoxville.
The country is wild and rough, and the search slow because of a thick undergrowth. Cabins are miles apart.
At daylight the trail will be taken up again if the weather permits.
Ling Gun Wanderings
Talks With Those Who Last Saw The Chinaman
PAINT ROCK, Nov. 25 - [Special] - The story of the wandering of Ling Gun, and of his sufferings and final disappearances from human sight, as tracked by THE CITIZEN correspondent and Rame Sanders, the guide, for the past 24 hours, in one of misery and wretchedness, robbery and outrage.
On Friday evening, Nov. 3, between sundown and dark, Conductor Thomas Dula, of the E.T. Va. & Ga. railroad, stopped his train at the iron bridge a mile below Paint Rock and put off Ling Gun, a Chinaman, who had refused to pay his fare.
Directly opposite the Chimney Rock on the French Broad, a hundred yards from the river in front and the same distance from the iron bridge, is the cabin that shelters Nancy Williams, her two little boys and a young woman of questionable character named Lillie Trantham.
And this is the tale the women tell:
A little while after the train stopped at the bridge on Friday night, when it was just coming on dark, a man walked into the cabin, and Nancy and the boys were badly scared. At first sight in the dim firelight they thought he was a negro, but as he got on the hearth close up to them they saw he was what they call a “Chiny,” and he asked, “Me stay tonight?” Nancy said “No,” but the man sat on the bed and pulled off a queer looking pair of frazzy shoes, soled with wooden bottoms. The 8 years old boy played with the shoes while “Chiny” rested on the bed. The man then gave Nance a piece of yellow railroad paper with writing on it and the woman said the writing said that the Chinaman had been put off the train because he would not pay his fare. It was given back and put away in a “catfish” pocketbook. The old man then pulled up his coat front and from a curious pocket took out several handfuls of silver money, laid it on the bed and counted it till he had $152. Then the money was put back in the strange pocket, Lillie Trantham and a man named Green Kelly came in the shack at this time, and after satisfying their curiosity about the strange appearing visitor, Green asked why he did not go to Paint Rock and buy a ticket? The man said he had money but preferred to foot it to Knoxville, and Nancy told Green about the shining handfuls of silver that had just been counted on the bed. Green then left.
Nance’s little George says that Green pushed the old man on the bed and took his money and “mammy took some, too;” but the child does not locate the particular visit of the old man to the house when this occurred. The Chinaman remained with the women until 3 o’clock when he went outside and departed; and the first chapter of Ling Gun’s experience at Nancy Williams’ ended.
The Next Chapter
About 10 o’clock Saturday morning Walter Gorrell, a son of J.Q.A. Gorrell and nephew of Capt. M.J. Fagg of Asheville, was in the road in front of his father’s farm house two miles from Paint Rock, on the old State road, when he called to folds in the house to come out and see a funny looking man. It was Ling. He came up and gave the boy a piece of salmon colored paper and asked to have it read. The paper was so badly soiled that the writing could not be deciphered and it was returned. A big lot of chickens in the road gathered to be fed and the boy and Chinaman struck up quite a friendship while watching the fowls. Ling’s neat appearance and pleasant manner was noted by others at the home. When he passed up the road he got out of sight, but in about two hours came back and kept right on toward Paint Rock.
The Chinaman to get from Nance Williams’ to Mr. Gorrell’s might have taken the path through the woods over the mountain, and the parties talked with are of opinion that this was his route rather than by Paint Rock.
And now the shadows close in toward Ling Gun.
Mrs. Etta Morris, the wife of Bob Morris, who was jailed at Marshall this week on an amended warrant charging the murder of the Chinaman, was at her father, Joe Ward’s house, a quarter of a mile from her own home at sundown the following Monday, and accompanied by two brothers, 11 years of age, got into her dooryard, when she was startled at the sight of a strangely dressed dark man close by the house, who, when he saw the party approaching, started toward them. The woman, who is slight in person and in a delicate condition, turned and ran toward her father-in-law’s house a hundred and fifty yards away, and as she got nearly there she fainted and fell to the ground. The little chaps screamed that a man had “killed Etta,” and the mother-in-law and aunt rushed out and carried the prostrate woman to the house. Ling followed and sat on a log nearby. He was ordered away and left, keeping in the road toward Paint Rock.
Frank Lamb, with his wife, lives a quarter of a mile from the Morris residence, and while it was yet light enough to distinguish plainly the Lambs heard Carter Ward calling loudly that “Etta was killed.” When the outside of the house was reached they were horrified to see the Carter boy and Wade Lawson “sicking” dogs on an old man. In their hands were rocks ready to be thrown, and Bob Morris was rapidly coming up with a drawn pistol. The old man fell on his knees before Lamb and putting up his hands plead for protection with heartrending moans. Morris presented the pistol at the Chinaman, saying he was going to kill the _________ for scaring his wife.
Mrs. Lamb prevented Morris from carrying out his threat. Ling Gun started off and Z.W. Morris, the father of Bob, and Lamb followed down the road and caught up with him in a field not far away, where he had sat down to rest. Mrs. Lamb took down some food and her husband bathed his wounds with liniment while Ling ate and gave the people 10 cents. Night was fully on by this time and the refugee thanked his helpers and with a “good bye” was gone.
Nancy Williams told Jones Arwood and Mark Cutshall late on Sunday afternoon about “Chiny” and his money.
Returns to Nancy Williams’
The whereabouts of the Chinaman all day Sunday are not accounted for. A little after dark on Sunday night a knock at Nancy Williams’ door was followed by the entrance of the head of Ling Gun who asked “Is this Knocky?” [Knoxville]. His former acquaintances were recognized and he moved away, saying that he would soon return. In 15 minutes he came into the house without shoes and his feet were blue with cold and muddy. His arm had marks of a dog’s bite; he showed a knot on his head as big as a hen’s egg, and opened his shirts and exhibited a bad bruise on his breast which he said had been made by an axe handle. His ankles and feet were badly swollen and he told how he had bene beaten and robbed by a man and a woman. Nance says she knew that a woman was in it because of the way Ling told it. He staid in the house half an hour and went away. About midnight the women were roused by the noise of the rattling on the door and groans. The door was opened an in came the old fellow dripping wet, with his outside trousers in his hands. He was shivering and seemed to be about frozen. While drying his clothes he took off a black cloth belt and put $5.35 in it out of a leather belt, also worn. Nancy said she thought this money was all that he had left. After he got warm and dry he got into a bed and staid til just daylight when he left, going up the track.
An hour after Gun left, Arwood and Cutshall passed along in the same direction. At 9 o’clock the same morning these two came in to Nancy’s cabin and Cutshall gave Lillie Trantham a box of snuff, several apples and some candy. They all stayed together till Tuesday morning when the men left for good. Arwood was nearly naked from the ragged condition of his clothes. Cutshall was comfortably dressed. Nancy told THE CITIZEN that Lillie and Cutshall had become lovers in the day and a half.
Again Among Our Friends
Two o’clock Tuesday morning. At that hour Tom Lamb, who lives on the Grassy Creek Road 3 1/4 miles from Paint Rock, was awakened by his wife who said somebody was groaning outside. Tom opened the door and Ling Gun was found “hunked” on the step. He was helped inside, put in a chair and a roaring fire was built which soon thawed him. His pitiable condition awakened the sympathy of the kindhearted people and Mrs. Lamb cooked some food and gave it to the sufferer, but the latter refused to touch it until he had offered money for its pay. The money was not taken and the Chinaman put it in the hand of one of the children in its father’s arms and said “candy”. The food was eaten and Ling got sleepy. He said he wanted to go to “Knocky” and Lamb told him to stay with him till daylight and he would go to the station with him; but the old man absolutely refused to go toward the railroad any more and motioned through the mountains. He continued to doze until 4:30 o’clock and then said he must go, which he did.
While dozing, the slightest noise would cause the old fellow to jump almost out of his chair. Mr. and Mrs. Lamb said that Ling Gun was polite and seemed very grateful for their kindness. He. He played with the baby and touched their heart’s with his tender care of the child.
Under the mountain called the State Line Ridge, a few minutes’ walk from where the Grassy Creek Road stops, Jasper Williams lives. As near as Mr. Williams can tell it was 9 o’clock. Tuesday morning when Ling Gun came to his house, barefooted, in the rain, and pointing to the northwest tried to say “Knoxville”. His face was dirty and his clothing appeared much worn. Williams asked the Chinaman to accept a pair of shoes and food, but Ling shook his head and kept on muttering “Knoxville” and moving in its direction. He was watched until he crawled slowly over a fence on a ridge and went out of sight, in feeblest efforts, in the edge of woods which, if followed, are almost impenetrable for strong men.
And Ling Gun is - where?
Frank Lamb and his wife made hunts for the missing man several days, but found no trace from Jasper Williams’.
Newsom Mace, while hunting in the Brushy mountains last week heard screams that led him to believe they had been made by a human being, but the hunter was unable to definitely ascertain the source of the cries.
Pete Ellenberg, a half-witted boy near Paint Rock, saw Nancy Williams take money out of a safe-like contrivance on a belt last Saturday, and says he will swear to the statement.
THE CITIZEN in its wanderings after Gun came upon a closed still and its warehouse in the mountains where it was possible for the wanderer to have got in out of the weather as both had open doors.
Dan Wills found human foot tracks in soft ground on the banks of Bear branch last week as he was going through the woods to Wolf Creek.
Bob Morris told Newsom Mace that he was sorry he had not killed the _______ ha had scared his wife, and that if he run upon him again he would kill him. Morris tried to borrow bullet moulds and bullets from Mace.
Stewart Lamb, a witness in the case, was taken suddenly ill on Monday last and died in two hours. His sister, Mrs. Wills, living three miles distant, heard of the death and in a few hours, on the same day, she too died.
The people generally deprecate the fiendish treatment of the Chinaman and are hoping that alive or dead he maybe found. Randolph
The Asheville Weekly Citizen Asheville NC, 12/7/1893, pg 5
Ling Gun Not Yet Found
Is The Chinaman Dead Or Alive?
‘The Citizen’ Man Has a Long, Hard Hunt Over the Mountains - Clothing Found - Interviews With Interested ?
PAINT ROCK, Nov 20 - Saturday night was utilized by the Asheville search in the section of country where Ling Gun was last seen by those who will tell.
On Sunday morning that hunt began at Jasper Williams’ home where the missing man climbed over near the bars. The country widened out in cleared land for a considerable distance, and fence rows of felled pine brush heaps and fodder stacks were gone through without a find. The abandoned ore mines on Iron Mountain were searched with lights and only spiders and crickets were found at home. George Hollow, a rocky gorge where the party had been told by a number of farmers was a likely spot to find Ling, and on his northwest course, was traversed from one end to the other, as well as apoint from which a raven had been seen to fly up on the previous day, but the drag through bamboo briers and rocks only scared up a pheasant and a rabbit.
Into the Wolf Creek country the party then made its way, and inquiries at a cabin on the route for the whereabouts of the men folds, got the reply, “They’re out searchin’ for the wild man.”
The creek was frozen over in many places and in the narrow valley, after two miles up, there was only an occasional ray of sunshine and the air was chill. At the root of the mountain a delightfully cold lunch was eaten and the party was glad to get on to higher ground.
When the roar of the lower falls was heard about six miles from Williams’ at 1 o’clock, Ling’s thin coat was found, and by the merest chance, although close to the road, in this way:
Your correspondent got up on a stump to get the full benefit of the sun, and turned for a look back into the valley through which the route had led, and after a moment noticed a hollow log on the ground close behind him. The glance fell at the same instant upon the outspread garment which was secured and recognized by John Williams as that worn by Ling on that last Tuesday morning. Casting about down the hill Sanders found the bands of cloth that had been bound around Ling’s feet in a frozen wad a foot from two broken laurels; the laurels appeared to have been bent and broken in somebody’s effort to pull himself up the steep.
The road at the resting stump makes an elbow and as the hunt continued though the bushes across the interval Sanders suddenly exclaimed “Boys, yonder he is!” This find, however proved to be the heavy trousers and coats six feet from the road, on the right and in a direct line with the two previous discoveries.
The country is so wild all about this point that a blockade stiller successfully carried on his business for 20 years and then came in and gave himself up, tired of not being found out.
The scope of land inclosed by the road and the creek for half a mile up the mountain is a laurel thicket and this was gone through several times on Sunday afternoon. Nothing more was found, and Ed Huff’s friendly roof under the bluff was the shelter for the night. Just before bed time a smell of smoke caused a rush for the kitchen, and the cradle full of baby wraps was seen on fie. The volunteer department put the business out and by the time the excitement was over the host said that “weather” might be looked for in the morning. The weather arrived. Before daylight a gale blew in, the like of which Huff said he had never known and he is 22 years old and was born at the place. At breakfast Mrs. Huff said that on the Monday previous her mother-in-law saw barefoot tracks at a spring on the trail to Slabtown in Brushy mountain.
The messenger with Monday’s dispatch to THE CITIZEN was started off in the storm and the searching party and a dog took the laurels. THE CITIZEN got the road lead and on a bed of leaves where three chestnut trees grew together found an envelope and paper. The articles had been soaked by rain and were badly creased and torn. The envelope was postmarked:
“San Francisco, Cal.
May 5, 2 p.m., ’93.”
12 No. Main St.,
There were three perpendicular rows of Chinese characters on the left side of the envelope, and on the reverse side the Asheville post office stamp. The paper found with the envelope has the appearance of a bag and there is a red line running across it’s face.
The water sprouts within arm’s length of the seat of leaves had been broken and twisted, but were hanging to the stem.
The twigs were cut off and brought in. The crashing of falling timber by the force of the gale made the search dangerous and the heavy rainfall increased the disagreeable feature of the walk, but the party remained out until used up.
Monday night the word was got that Bob Morris had passed over the road three times after Ling got away and before Morris was arrested, and that he had taken an old mill road 100 yards below Huff’s which enabled him to pass their house without being seen.
Tuesday broke in a cold mist and the hunters took the banks of the creek from above and below the lower falls. The vines and snaky laurel interlaced so closely that many times a man would be five minutes in gaining five yards of his course. Slippery rocks added to the slow progress and the path traveled showed the fact that a body might be lying within ten feet of a man searching and not be seen. The banks are precipitous and doubly dangerous to persons at the edge of the stream by the loosening masses of rock that detach from frost and go crashing down to the water. In places there are fissures in the rocks so deep that it took several minutes to get the dark recesses lighted up with matches. In the rocks over which the stream dashes are numerous pools and whirls into which a body might lie and never come to the surface. Altogether from the road down into the creek it is a wild and rocky fastness.
The creek was crossed at the falls, and Fern Hollow searched to the top of Brushy Mountain and to spring where Mrs. Huff saw the track. A light snow and sleet was falling, but the spring was found and indentations in the mud covered with leaves; not sufficiently plain, however, to make it certain they were footprints. The berries and nuts are plentiful, and the Chinaman could have kept himself from starving along this trail. There are thousands of fallen trees all over this mountain and the leaves about the logs are a foot deep. A body might be covered and not notice every ten yards.
The return to Huff’s and to the Rock was made by Tuesday night and visions of soap and clean linen, etc, etc made us willing to go back as soon as good dogs can be got. Nance Williams and a new ? from that worthy in the face of “Chiny” clothes’ and Lillie Trantham’s tumble out of bed in her eagerness to see the garments is told in the following:
The grip with Ling Gun’s recovered clothes in it was taken to Nancy Williams’ between 8 and 9 o’clock on Tuesday night for identification by Nancy and Lillie Trantham. The women and children had retired, but took down the bars and shoved aside a hundred pound rock when told there was news from “Chiny”. As the first garment was outspread before the the old woman she threw up her hands exclaiming: “Why them’s ‘Lean Gum’s’ very clothes!” and as she reached and got each piece she continued, “Well, I’m glad the old man is alive, and now I’m going to tell you’uns the God’s truth about them boys taking his money.” She then reeled off the following:
“When Jones Arwood and Marsh Cutshall came in my house, Chiny asked Marsh to get him something to eat and handed over twenty-five cents and a nickel. Marsh took the money and put it in his pocket and told the old man it was too late.”
As Nancy mentioned Cutshall’s name the bed in the opposite end of the room a from the fireplace humped up and the Trantham woman’s frowsy head emerged from the covers and her voice piped out: “No, it wasn’t that way”.
After a minute’s wordy wrangle between the women, Ling’s trousers were held up and Lillie called a halt until she could get on her clothes and show how the old man burned his pants as he dried them; and she came to the fire and almost set them in flames in her exhibition. The trousers are scorched at the hip pocket. As Lillie laid down the trousers and looked at the strings of cloth supposed to have been wrapped about Ling’s feet, she said: “This is the stuff the money belt was made out of that Marsh took out of the old man’s hands and felt of and hung up on the chimney.”
Then Nance got an inning, and said: “When the old man got up and went out at three o’clock that morning Lillie had her head in Marsh’s lap and Arwood said, ‘Come on, Marsh, let’s go and get the old man’ money,’ and right then I knowed they was going to get themselves in trouble, and I told ‘em so, and said, ‘boys, you better not do it; you don’t know what’ll come of it;’ but the boys went off after ‘Chiny,’ and come back in ten minutes with each of ‘em having a dollar. They said they told the old man they wanted money and he gave Marsh a dollar and Arwood seventy-five cents, when Arwood told him he must have as much as Marsh and he gave him 25 cents more. Both men went to Paint Rock and bought some things and came back drunk.”
The women believe that Ling had been found, and they were told that lies would not help out their connection with the case. They fell over each other in their eagerness to tell their story and were called down several times, so rapid was their talk.
Another of the “great unwashed,” looney Pete Ellenberg, desires to amend his story of Saturday last. Pete says he lied about seeing Nance with the Chinaman’s belt and money and was “hired by old man Morris and old man Ward” to tell it on the woman. Jim Ellenberg, a brother, told Pete that he would “frail hell outen him if he didn’t tell the paper man the truth this time.” Pete said he’d swear it, give his hand on at or swear it any way, for it was the truth. He was asked if he knew what an ? was and reported: “If you lie God’ll forgive, but if you swear to a lie God’ll never forgive you.”
All the persons who had seen Ling Gun while about this place identified the garments and those to whom he showed the envelope recognized the one found.
Both Morris was seen in the road near which Ling’s clothes have been found on three separate occasions between the time of the disappearance of the Chinaman and Morris’ arrest.
THE CITIZEN is under many obligations to W.L. Ray and S.J. Galbraith of the R&D Co. here for courtesies that have aided the investigation. Randolph
News and Observer Chronicle, Raleigh, NC, 12/9/1893, Pg 3
Links In Ling Gun’s Cask
The Lion of this chapter of the hunt for Ling Gun is a big brown mastiff who guards the clearing in the bluff on the State line between North Carolina and Tennessee, where Ed Huff has his cabin and a good wife and two chubby children.
Lion led his owner by most dismal howls to a thicket under Terrapin Gap on Wednesday last, where the dog was found crouching on a hickory shirt.
On Thanksgiving morning Lion was put in the woods at the gap and his scent pointed toward Piney Ridge, a low lying mountain, half a mile to the left of the road. The print of a human foot tracking toward the Wolf Creek valley was seen on the ridge, and hopes were revived of new discoveries. The first look of the guides placed the party on a well defined trail of broken bushes straight down a rib of the hill that ended at a small run. Here on a bed of moss was spied a pair of drawers of the Chinaman kind. The spot of this find was easily seen from the road.
A short rest was taken and the bed of the run was tackled for what it contained. The narrow valley was well covered, and not many rods had been scoured before a woolen undershirt, turned wrong side out, except one sleeve, was discovered.
The remainder of the hollows on the left of the road were searched without further incident. Here the standing timber is very dense and the air chilly and damp. Those who believed that Ling had cast aside his clothes and had wandered naked through the woods, were staggered in their faith when this neck of the woods was gone through and nothing was found.
The exploration continued, however, in the deepest brush and a few feet from the creek the most hidden of all the articles, a knife, was found. The instrument was held in place on a mossy log by a stem of hemlock. One blade, the largest, was open and a smaller blade had been broken out. The handle was also broken. The knife was considerably rusted. A patch of moss that had been rubbed off was still hanging to the side of the log. This knife has not been identified as Guns.
Thanksgiving day ended with the mystery unsolved; in Friday’s work there were no developments, and the party quit the search, as one member expressed it, “Out o’heart of the Chinaman’s body being in the woods.”
The singular features of the trip and the ones that most impressed the minds of the hunters, were in the facts that right at each find there were bushes broken down, and each object found was but a short distance from the main trail up the mountain.
Notes of the trip included many incidents of general interest, and some of them may be clues to a final successful search for the corpse of the unfortunate Ling Gun, and the detection of his murderers.
Arwood and Cutshall, while passing up the railroad, on the morning Nancy Williams, says they left her shanty to rob the old man, were overheard by a man who was lying under a car making repairs, to make excited remarks concerning their power to overcome some third party.
A man unknown to the witness, accompanied by Nancy Williams and her little boy, were on Grassy Creek where Ling was beaten and went in the mountains on his trail on November 20.
Nancy was in the mountain at a mill room after Ling was missed and when asked what she was doing so far from home, replied that she was looking for the old man’s shoes.
Except the thin coat which is believed to have been torn by the dogs there are no marks, not even a hanging thread that shows that their wearer went through brush. In contrast it may be said that the leather leggings of one of the searchers are covered with scars and deep scratches; the clothing of others was more or less torn, and Ed Huff, the most active of the party came out of the hunt with his coat in strings.
Ling’s wounds, as described by those who saw him on Monday night were a knot on his head from the blow of a fence paling, a swollen and purple ankle from a blow that caused a limp in his gait, and his left arm is described as swelled until the skin looked as if it would burst, with marks like a dog’s teeth in it from which drops of blood were oozing. The old man moaned grievously as he rubbed his breast at the spot he was hit by a stone.
There are three persons in jail at Marshall charged with the murder of Ling Gun. Bob Morris, the husband of the frightened woman, 22 years old; Carter Ward, the woman’s brother, aged 16 and Wade Lawson is a nephew of Mrs. Morris and the neighbors claim that he is weak minded.
The long barreled brass mounted squirrel rifle, powder horn and bullet pouch ornamented the inside walls of every cabin.
The theory that the missing man has been devoured by animals is not much believed in by the mountaineers who say that wild cats are the only “varmints” roaming the forests and that they will not touch carrion.
The nights in the mountains were spent among people who are not flush with worldly possessions, but who are as kindly disposed to the stranger as any on earth. They condemn the cruelty shown toward Ling Gun, and will do all in their power to bring the guilty ones to justice.
The Asheville Citizen Times, Asheville, NC, 12/21/1893, Pg 1
Ling Gun’s Body Found
It Was In The Woods In Tennessee
The Mutilated Body Found As Hogs Were Feeding Upon It - The Authorities Notified
Hot Springs, N.C., Dec 21 - [Special] - Ling Gun’s body has been found near Wolf Creek. H.M. Swaine
From W.W. Zachary, esq, of Marshall, who came up to Asheville this afternoon, THE CITIZEN obtains the facts concerning the finding of the Chinaman’s body, as learned from Conductor Spaugh of the Western North Carolina road. This morning a man living near Paint Rock went out with his dogs to search for hogs. When four or five miles beyond Paint Rock, and about a quarter of a mile on the Tennessee side of the State line, the man found his hogs feeding upon the body of a man. A investigation of the body showed unmistakably that it was that of the missing Ling Gun. Indications showed that the hogs had found the body near a log, and had dragged the body 10 or 15 feet from the spot where they found it. The remains were badly mutilated and the man who found them built a protection about the body and at once left for Paint Rock to notify authorities.
There was nothing on the body except a shirt and a belt.
Asheville Citizen Times, Asheville, NC, 12/26/1893, Pg 2
The Ling Gun Inquest
Result Of The Autopsy - Verdict Of The Coroner’s Jury
The ghastly remains of Ling Gun were found on Thursday last lying near a big log between Wolf Creek and the mountain trail, by the dog Lion who nosed the woods with the searching party three weeks ago. Those of the searchers who have been seen by THE CITIZEN since the find of the body remember of being on the log and that the dog passed about it. The ground for a considerable space around the spot is clear of undergrowth.
Whether the corpse was near this log when the searchers were out or whether it had been placed there subsequently will probably not be certainly known until the murderers and the details of the horrible crime are “given away” by shaky accomplices.
Sheriff White, of Madison county, went to the body on Thursday night, but it was found to be in the jurisdiction of the Tennessee authorities and the inquest was held on Friday by Coroner W.F. Morris of Newport, and a jury from that State.
The corpse was lying in a rail pen that had been built to keep off hogs and its condition was sickening. However the prints of dog bites and the original bruises that may have led to Gun’s death, were still visible. Positive evidence that Ling Gun had been murdered was seen in two clean cut gashes across the throat that almost severed the head from the trunk.
Dr. C.H. Holland, who made the examination of the wounds for the coroner, discovered that the neck had been broken, and that in the fractured vertebra a sharp instrument had been driven with force sufficient to deeply penetrate the bone. The body was frozen and the surgeon and the surgeon being unable to determine whether of not the skull had been fractures, it was decided to take the head to Newport.
The autopsy was concluded and the party returned to the railroad near Nance Williams shanty, and heard the testimony.
Ed Huff stated: “My brother Jim found my dog fighting a hog over the body of a dead man. I went there. I passed the spot three weeks ago, but I didn’t see the body, and I am satisfied that the body could not have been there at that time without my seeing it.”
Mrs. Mary Lamb, whose testimony concerning the treatment of the Chinaman by the parties now in jail at Marshall has been printed in THE CITIZEN, identified the head as that of Ling Gun, from a missing tooth, the gray haired queue, and by the peculiar blue of the shaven scalp.
After the surgeon’s statement the jury returned the following verdict:
“In the investigation held on Wolf Creek, in Cocke county, on 22d December, 1893, before W.F. Morris, acting coroner, report the body of Ling Gun there lying dead, and the jurors whose names are hereto subscribed do on their oaths say that he came to his death five or six weeks ago by violent means inflicted by parties unknown. Signed John Weaver, Charles Farmer, P.C. Morris, S.E. Huff, W. Caldwell, M. Caldwell, C.H. Holland.”
Coroner Morris gave directions for the decent interment of the corpse on a rise of ground, beyond the reach of high water in the creek, and on Friday afternoon the branches of the sombre spruces waved their shadows over Ling Gun’s lonely grave in the forest.
The Hickory Press, Hickory, NC, 1/4/1894, Pg 8
The Case of Ling Gun
The mutilated body of Ling Gun, the murdered Chinaman, has been found, and, on December the 22nd, an inquest was held over the remains resulting in a verdict of murder by parties unknown.
The man’s throat had been cut, and it is believed that the murderers placed his body where it was finally found. The head has been sent to Newport, Tenn., as evidence against the parties now under arrest charged with Ling Gun’s murder. The inquest was held by Coroner W.F. Morris, of Newport, Tenn., as the remains were found within the said State. A Mr. James Huff was the first to find the body being attracted to the spot by a battle between his dog and a hog which had been feasting on the dead body. North Carolina has nobly done her duty in the pursuit of the Chinaman’s murderers, and it is confidently believed that at least some of the criminals are in the hands of the law and will pay the penalty of the heinous taking off of Ling Gun. The Chinese minister has been advised of the murder of his countryman in all its details, and his expressed himself as greatly gratified at the vigorous pursuit of the criminals.
The Asheville Weekly Citizen, Asheville, NC, 3/22/1894, Pg 2
The State Set Right
North Carolina Has Done Her Duty In The Ling Gun Case
Editor The Citizen: I deem it my duty to make a statement to the public relative to the case of Robert Morris, Carter Wade, and Wade Lawson, who were tried and convicted at this term of our court on a charge of having committed an assault on Ling Gun near Paint Rock about the 7th day of last November. The first impression in regard to this case was that these defendants were not only guilty of the assault at the time stated, but that they had followed up the attack afterwards and had actually killed Ling Gun. After the defendants had been lodged in jail charged with the murder of Ling Gun, a search was instituted and every effort was made to find the body of the missing man, but the search proved futile.
Quite awhile afterwards a gentleman living beyond the Tennessee line, while passing through the mountains of Tennessee, some several miles from the scene of the first assault, found the dead body of he Chinaman. From an examination it was found that he had been murdered; his throat had been cut and his neck broken. I was retined by the State to assist Mr. Zachary and Solicitor Jones in the prosecution. An investigation disclosed the following facts relative to these defendants:
About the 7th day of last November Ling Gun started from near Asheville to some point in Tennessee. He was put off the train on the Tennessee road by the conductor because he refused to pay his fare. The next day he passed the home of Mrs. Ward, going in the direction of Robert Morris’ home. Later in the same day and about sundown the wife of Robert Morris was in the road near her home, when she met the Chinaman coming back the same road. She had never seen a Chinaman before and have never seen any one dressed in the peculiar garb in which he was attired. Supposing that he was crazy man, she became frightened and fainted and was carried to her home near by her husband and some neighbors. It appeared that the Chinaman had approached her and tried to talk and she could not understand a word he uttered. This fact, in connection with his strange appearance, frightened the woman very badly, and as a result she was confined to her bed for several days, being at the same time in delicate health.
It further appeared by defendant’s testimony that after Mrs. Morris had been carried home that the Chinaman followed and entered the yard and attempted to enter the house; also, that Robert Morris, put him out of the yard, but used no more force than was necessary. The next account of the Chinaman was given by Mr. and Mrs. Lamb, who testified that about dark on the same day they heard a cry of distress, also heard some one hissing dogs and heard the dogs barking. They were at their home, a distance of three quarters of a mile from Robert Morris’ home, when they heard the noise. They at once went out to the road, where they found Ling Gun, who seemed to be limping and was badly frightened. That just behind him came Carter Ward and Wade Lawson, who had the dogs with them, and also had rocks in their hands. That they said they had “given the old man h___.” In a few moments Robert Morris came up to where the parties were standing and remarked “that the Chinamen had frightened his wife and had killed her.” He had a pistol in his hand, but did not point it at the Chinaman.
These were the last witnesses who connected the defendants with the transaction. The evidence, while it made the defendants guilty, made them guilty of an assault and battery. The Chinaman had at that time three wounds on his person, to wit: One on his right leg, which had the appearance of an old wound; another on his left leg which had evidently been inflicted by some one of the defendants, and still another on his right arm which resembled a dog bit. Neither one of these wounds was of a serious nature.
There was no evidence which in any way connected these defendants with his murder. Therefore the solicitor did all that could be done when he indicted them for an assault. While the assault on the Chinaman was a brutal one, at the same time one can well see how Robert Morris could have been misled in making it. His wife had fainted and, as he thought at that time, had been kicked by the Chinaman. Under such circumstances it was perfectly natural that he should feel indignant and inclined to punish him for what he considered to be a great wrong his wife as recently at his home. The other two defendants were mere boys, and had barely found the age of accountability at the time the assault was committed. HIs Honor Judge McIver took great pains to thoroughly investigate all the circumstances attending this case before he passed sentence. After doing so he sentenced each of the defendants to hard labor for four months on the public roads of our county. He did this in consideration of the fact that they had already been confined for four months previous to court on this charge, bail having been refused on the idea that they were guilt of the murder of the Chinaman.
I would not have written this article, but I do so in order that the people of our State may have the true facts, so many sensational reports having gone out in regard to the transaction. I am informed that two men are now confined in Newport jail in Tennessee on a charge of having murdered Ling Gun. Our people are well satisfied with the results of the trial, and all are glad to learn that the unfortunate man was not murdered on North Carolina soil.
Asheville Gazette News, Asheville, NC, 12/17/1909, Pg 1
Story of Ling Gun Hunt As Told By A Participant
Former Alderman W.F. Randolph, who bore a roving journalistic commission to find Ling Gun - and who found his remains - when asked by a Gazette-News reported to let his mind wander back into those days, told the story of the search, in his characteristic style, which has a virility and charm of its own:
“’Randy, it’s up to you to find the lost Chinaman, Ling Gun,’ was the dictum from the editorial room, and the search for the missing Chinaman through the mountains high piled up along the line of North Carolina and Tennessee began.
“This memoranda: Ling Gun, an old Chinaman, was put on a train with a ticket for Knoxville by his nephew. Hop Woh, then doing the “wasee” act in Asheville, who stated that Ling Gun had several hundred dollars in coin, when he left Asheville, and that the money was carried in a belt wound around the old man’s body.
“After the train left Paint Rock, that afternoon, the conductor called for Ling’s ticket. The ticket was not forthcoming, and notwithstanding the rainy night, the November chill, the absence of a station, and the darkness, the old man was given the bounce.
“A week later Capt. T.W. Patton, then Mayor of Asheville, was in receipt of a letter from a resident of the Paint Rock section, stating that the Chinaman was wandering in that country; that he had been inhumanely treated, and the writer suggested that the man be rescued.
“The city council voted $50.00 for the emergency, and Mayor Patton asked the Asheville Citizen to help him.
“Then came the ‘dictum.’
“It was easy until we hit the trail; the trail was cold; so was the weather, and those who were known to have information refused to give down.
Search Through The Settlements
“Numerous citizens aided in the search and days and nights were spent in going over the rounds of the settlements where Ling Gun had been seen.
“A woman who had started for the barn-yard to do the night’s milking was seen to fall suddenly to the ground and her screams accompanied her fall. She was taken to the house in a fainting condition and sufficiently.
Trail Gets Hot
“Ling Gun wasn’t in any of the holes in the ground and the trail became colder, and then hot.
“A Pair of dissolute women who ‘cabined’ with a small boy near the French Broad, below Paint Rock, were said to have guilty knowledge of the taking off of the Chinaman and at their cabin the trail was again found.
“That night’s call at the cabin will never be forgotten. Rain and darkness aided the impressions. To our knocking at the shaky door of the cabin, soon after midnight, there was o response from within. The guide’s call of the women’s names, coupled with his own, however, had better luck, and after a minute’s delay the bar was lifted and the blackness of the interior held just one re eye of light from the embers of a hearth fire whose blaze had long since died out.
“The dropped-down ends of the former fire were kicked together, and the addition of a handful of chips soon gave the light desired.
“From one of the two beds in the room the elder woman had risen; the other bed presented a tumbled-up array of junk.
“Busy with the firelighting, no reply had been given to the old woman’s request for the whyfore of the evening’s company - we just let her run on; and she talked some.
“The creaking of the bed laden with the junk pile indicated life in that nest, and interest was awakened to a chapter of revelation as the junk pile untangled itself, and a youngish woman and a boy emerged from the mass of bedclothes and sat up and took notice.
“The women were reassured that the call was a peaceable one, if they were inclined to have it so; conversation brightened up, and the occupants of the bed joined the growing circle around he hearth.
“Where’d you hide the Chinaman?” was the question.
“’Never hid him, Chiney took off,’ was the reply.
(To “take off means to depart; often “to run”.)
“After the grilling was thus opened the sparring was free-for-all. The women agreed on the story that on the night the old man was dumped off the train, a queer looking man, whom they called “Chiney”, covered with mud, wringing wet and shivering from cold, came to their cabin, and by mumbling and by signs let them know that he desired shelter. They heaped up the fire, helped him off with his blue jumper and funny looking shoes, and dried him out.
“With warmth and a bite to eat, Chiney took off a belt, they said, made of black silk, from which he turned out on the hearth, ‘right here, on this very stone,’ said one of the women, a pile of silver dollars that they counted to bever three hundred.’
“’What’d you do with the dollars?’
“’Never done nothin’; Chiney put ‘em back.’
“The women were too slick to give themselves away and the kid was a dummy, right.’ Chiney left in the night and we aint saw him since.’ was the blind ending of a ‘conference’ that began at midnight and lasted for hours.
“The women were subsequently jailed, but the evidence failed to hold them.
A New Tie
“The railroad men at Paint Rock had been our friends from the start, and on their tip a thread was taken up that led to the upper Wolf Creek country, several miles from the scene of all the previous efforts at a find.
“The results of the first day out, on this lay, shaped Ling Gun, but the shape was of his clothing only; his body was still missing. At intervals of space, perhaps a hundred yards, were found his brass-buttoned blue jumper, and other articles of dress; a broken-handled pocket knife and a pink colored wash list. Wolf Creek was frozen over in spots, the air was winter cold, was it possible that the Chinaman had gone nutty; had his vagary led him to shed his raiment, or was it a blind lead, to throw off the scent?
“If anybody knew, there was no answer, not then.
“It was hot-foot all the afternoon; but there were no more clothes, no Chinaman, living or dead, just that tired feeling, and when night closed in Ed Huff and his good wife opened their doors to us, at the old Cushing & Chapman lumber camp, miles and miles from nowhere.
“A bully hot supper; an hour of talk before the chimney fire, and we had received the gratifying news that Ed and his brother, Jim, would join us in the tomorrow’s search; sleepiness got in its work and that day’s work was done.
“The news of the loss of the Chinaman had reached the shut-in locality and each resident gave out the benefit of his surmises.
“One had heard the hounds barking furiously in the dead of the night, and then become quiet.
“Another had found pennies and dimes in a shack used as a stable, and a place in the fodder looked as if a man had slept there.
“Another had seen a man with gold money, a man who was never known to have money before; the man with coin had given out that he had sold some cattle for the gold, but no one had ever heard that he had ever owned any cattle.
“A torn letter, with a portion of envelope bearing the name of a man who seldom got into that country, was picked up in the unfrequented woods; a connection was made between the letter, the cattle, and the man who had shown the gold; suspicions grew and arrests were made on information, by the sheriff of Madison; the meat of the information prematurely leaked, and the Marshall jail turned loose the prisoners.
“Jim Huff came riding into Paint Rock early one morning with a blanket-covered, mysterious load and we thought the hawk had lit. When Jim had removed his hands from his pockets, after guiding his mule away from the public eye behind a house he lifted the blanket and disclosed a blood-stained tow sack, and the tow sack had something in it. As Jim pulled the ghastly bundle off the mule and pitched it on the steps of the building, he grinned triumphantly and held to view the undershirt of Ling Gun, which he had found the day before in the Wolf Creek valley.
“The tow sack contained remnants of a hog killing and Jim bartered off the remnants.
“Nothing doing, again. It was back to the woods and resumption of the search through the wilds of Brushy mountain.’”Same old weariness of flesh, after all the hours of daylight had been consumed in fruitless tramp, and , and then back to the Huff cabin for the night, where wet feet suggested first aid to the afflicted, and this was always forthcoming when soaked shoes and socks were laid on the warm hearth to dry out and a pair of Ed’s new woollen socks pulled over benumbed toes.
“Stirring times. Yes, there were periods when excitement ran high.
Episode of the Chase
In the early days of the search, while sleeping hours were spent at Paint Rock, an invitation, fortunately it was declined, was extended to attend a dance across the river.
Four members of the boarding house circle took in the dance. Somebody started a fight during the progress of the dance and the visitors from this side of the French Broad were old to “light out”. Pistol shots assisted the speed of the departing guests and when they attempted to cross the river, their skiff upset, and a drenched quartet aroused the household at 4 a.m. They said they’d a lot of fun.
Concerning a Polecat
One night, during the tranquil after-dinner smoke at Huff’s cabin, a series of howls, the real thing, from the throats of many hounds, arose from between the wide cracked floor boards beneath our seats, and then - oh, it was awful. The dogs had chased a polecat under the house and the pole cat was protecting itself in it’s only way.
“Every weapon at hand was jabbed through the floor at the mass of dogs and eat, by Ed; the other members of the company had fled for air.
“Sleep was impossible indoors that memorable night.
“This noisome episodes was followed in the morning, when smoke was smelled, and the discovery was made that portions of a bursting chunk of fire had fallen in the cradle where the baby boy of the family was sleeping. After much sniffing, the smoulder was located; out of doors in a rush went baby, cradle, and all, and the baby wasn’t touched by the fire.
The Body Is Found
“The barking of a big dog belonging to Huff, Lion they called him, led to the finding of the mutilated body of the murdered Chinaman.
“Close to the roadway over which the searching party traversed every day while in that section, and from beneath a log that served as part of the path in a boggy spot on the roadside, hogs had dragged the remains of Ling Gun. The dog had driven off the swine and bayed until the men came to the spot.
“A pen of rails was built around the corpse, watchers kept a fire going until the arrival of the sheriff and coroner of Cocke county, Tenn. who held an inquest.
“Ling Gun had been murdered, after being subjected to shameful abuse. His entire body was a skinny semblance of a skeleton, the result of starvation and brutality and blackhearted crime. A sharply pointed piece of iron had been driven into the vertebra at the base of the neck on the unfortunate man.
The heels of the dead man’s feet had disappeared by reason of the body having been dragged while it was being taken to the place of hiding.
This theory was conclusive from the fact that a strap having a hand loop was found fastened around the body, and from the further fact that the mud was clogged only on the feet.
When the inquest was concluded a box was homemade and the body was given decent burial.
“I omitted to mention one thing, in its proper place: occurrences that followed the early stories of the assault and maltreatment of the foreigner.
Justice Walter Gudger of Asheville, at that time engaged in detective work here, spent some days at the scene of the Chinaman’s mishaps, and secured evidence that led to the arrest of several persons, who were charged with assault upon the old man.
“A trial was had at Paint Rock before Esquire Ray and the men were held to Superior court, where they were convicted and given four months on the county chain gang.”
Asheville Citizen Times, Asheville, NC, 12/18/1909, Pg 1
Murder Of Chinaman 16 Years Later
Man Who Thought He Was Dying Gives Names Of Those Who He Says Killed Celestial and Implicates Himself. Recalls Crime Of Incredible Brutality Was Never Fully Explained
The story of the inhuman treatment by ignorant people and robbers in the mountains near Paint Rock in November, 1892, of an old and ignorant Chinaman named Ling Gun has been recalled by the announcement from an official source that a man named P.C. Morris residing in Cocke county, Tennessee, is alleged to have made a confession giving the names of those concerned in the murder of the hapless Celestial.
It is stated by Deputy Sheriff R.A. Green of Cocke county that P.C. Morris, supposing himself to be dying recently confessed to his physician that two men, whose names he gives killed the Chinaman and that he (P.C. Morris) then hauled the body late Tennessee to conceal it and that later two Madison county men dragged the body to the place where it was found. It is said that one of the men lives in this county, or nearby.
The letter from the deputy sheriff came to Sheriff T. F. Hunter, who turned it over to Justice W.R. Gudger in order to get further information, since Mr. Gudger was at the time as an officer employed to ferret out the murderers, and had actually caused the conviction and nine months sentence of Robert Morris and Waites Lawson for assaulting the Chinaman. Upon consultation the letter was sent to Sheriff Cole of Madison county in which the outrage occurred and he in turn forwarded it to Solicitor Mark W. Brown of this city, who, however, had gone Thursday to Hot Springs, Ark. The information in the letter has become public without any arrests being made.
The foregoing statements are made by the official letter form to Cocke county deputy sheriff and rest on the alleged dying statement of P.C. Morris. Whether there is say truth in what the dying man said is a matter for further determination.
An Incredible Story
The story of the suffering and death of Ling Gun is one of shame, involving ignorance and crime. Though it was years ago Mr. Gudger will remembers the details, of which he spoke yesterday to The Citizen. It was in November, 1893, that Ling Gun, an aged Chinaman who had lived some time in Asheville, was placed on a west bound train by his nephew, Hob Woh, who was running a laundry here, with a ticket for Knoxville and several hundred dollars in money. There was a change of conductors and the second conductor, not being able to understand the attempts of the old man to explain himself, heartlessly put him off the train in the darkness and rain at Paint Gap.
The files of The Citizen show that about a week later Mayor T.W. Patton of Asheville received a letter from a man at Paint Gap telling him of the inhuman treatment to which a Chinaman had been exposed in Madison County and asking him to take action. The city council voted $50 for this purpose and Mr. Gudger, who had shortly before been a member of the police force, was engaged to find those who had been guilty and on request of Mayor Patton The Citizen sought to find Ling Gun; W.F. Randolph, who was then connected with The Citizen, undertaking the task.
The officer and the newspaper man promptly plunged into the mountains on the trail of the Chinaman. The officer found that after being put off the train the missing Celestial had wandered through the woods to the house of Robert Morris where the sight of a Chinaman in his native garb, a personage whose like she never saw before, frightened the wife of Morris and thereupon the old man was beaten and dogs set on him and he was run into the woods. Mr. Gudger caused the arrest of Robert Morris and Waites Lawson on the charge of assault and they were such sentenced to nine months imprisonment, he said.
The officer had something of an experience at the house of Morris the night he went there to arrest him. He said that when he notified Morris that he was under arrest the man’s wife began to wail and Morris began some threatening demonstrations whereupon his wife implored him to calm himself, saying:
“You know how you get when you get excited.”
The old man stormed still more but if the game was intended to frighten the officer it failed. Mr. Gudger said that he took a hand in the talk and also suggested to Morris that he be calm.
“I know how I get myself when I get excited,” said he, consolingly, “I always have to kill a man before I quit.”
Thereupon Morris quieted down considerably and later Waites Lawson emerged from the rear room in company with several big mountaineers, and set up a clamor against being arrested. The officer and his assistant produced handcuffs and the two men then “came along”.
Followed Trail Further
Mr. Randolph followed the trail left by the Chinaman, which led down the French Broad river to a cabin occupied by two women and a boy. The women admitted that the Chinaman had spent a night there and that he had counted out a pile of silver dollars, but they claimed they had done him no harm and did not know where he had gone. Then came reports from other people who had seen the poor old man, bedraggled and pitiful, seeking aid, but as he used but one word, “Knocky,” they did not understand that he meant Knoxville, and many were superstitiously afraid of him. Others, however, had given him shoes and clothing.
It was found later that he had gone up Wolf Creek, and the search of The Citizen was carried there and pieces of the Chinaman’s clothing were found, buttons and a pink colored wash list. There the trail stopped, however, Mr. Randolph went to the house of Ed Huff at the old Chapman and Cushing lumber camp and made that headquarters. Near there he found the remains of the Chinaman, where dogs had dragged them. A sharp iron spike driven in the back of the man’s neck and a leather strap attached to his wrist told the story of an atrocious murder and the dragging of the body from the place where the murder was committed.
Asheville Gazette News, Asheville, NC, 12/21/1909, PG 9
“You’ve Got To Hang,” He Told His Brother
Stormy Scene Reported To Have Taken Place Between Robert and Pardee Morris - Man Who Owned Hog That Ate Chinaman Refused To Eat Her
Correspondence of the Gazette News
Wolf Creek, Tenn. Dec. 21 - Your correspondent learns that Pardee Morris told the story of the killing of Ling Gun, a Chinaman, implicating his brother; Bob, the brother, visited Pardee. It was just after Pardee was taken back to his home from Newport.
This visit, from all reports, was not all, filled with brotherly love,
“Anyway,” said a neighbor, “Robert Morris came on down the creek to my house and told me he never expected to go to his brother Pardee’s house any more.”
Robert said he went to Pardee’s house and asked him why he had told such things on him about killing the Chinaman. At this Pardee “lit in and cussed Bob out,” said he had ruined him and had broken him up.
“You killed the Chinaman and your d______ neck has got to break for it. I am not going to lie for you any longer.” Such, this neighbor says, Robert Morris told him Pardee had said and later, Robert’s wife told him the same thing. Robert Morris lives near Paint Rock across the North Carolina line.
It was stated that Dr. Charles Holland of Newport had accompanied Coroner Fowler Morris to the place where the body of Ling Gun was found, 16 years ago, and that he had found the Chinaman’s throat had been cut in two places, as Pardee Morris has stated. The coroner has been dead several years.
Wouldn’t Eat Hog That Ate Chinaman
The body of the Chinaman was found eight miles up in the mountains near the head of Wolf Creek, just over in Tennessee. It was very cold weather and a mere accident figured in the finding of the body. Jim Huff was passing along the trail near the log and his dog “sniffed” at a hog. Jim got down from his horse and looked around to see what the hog was eating. He was horrified to find it was the missing “Chink” for whom they had hunted in vain for days and days. Driving the hogs away, he hurried to make known the news. But in going, he spotted the hog, an old sow. that had been chewing on the Chinaman. She belonged to George Miller. George was telling a newspaper man at Newport the other day about it. “I never did kill that sow,” said Geroge, “I kept her until she died four or five years afterwards. I did not want to eat a hog that had eaten a Chinaman.” “But how about her pigs?” he was asked. “Oh”, he replied, “I eat them, they were one generation removed; that did not matter if their mamy was a ‘Chink’ eater.”
It is stated that Pardee Morris only remained at Newport jail for a few days; that physicians and the board of county commissioners had decided that he had only a few more days to live and his dementia was not such as would endanger the lives of anyone so he was sent back to his little log cabin four miles up Wolf Creek to breathe his last in the mountains were he had been born and lived all his days. He was taken back by Deputy Sheriff C.F. Hughes of Newport. Dr. Green says Morris did not seem “much crazy’ but that he was very weak.
News And Observer, Raleigh, NC, 12/21/1909, Pg 6
The Killing Of Chinaman
The Confession Of Pardee Morris - His Kinspeople Were Implicated
Asheville, NC, Dec. 20 - C.P. Morris, better known in the wilds of Cocke county, Tenn., as Pardee Morris, the man who a few days ago realizing that death was near; that probably within a few hours he would meet his Maker face to face and in an effort to relive his mind of a weight that had bowed him down for sixteen years, told the taking off of the Chinaman, Ling Gun: of his participation in the search; of his knowledge of the murderers; of his sitting on the coroner’s jury and violating his oath in an effort to shield his kinsmen and friends, has probably by this time “cashed in”. The life of Pardee Morris Saturday morning hung by a slender thread, which, in the opinion of the watchers at the bedside, was likely to snap at any moment. He lives on Wolf Creek, in Tennessee, near the North Carolina line.
The story printed Friday telling of the confession of Morris created widespread interest and revived memories of the tragedy which sixteen years ago not only aroused the people of Asheville, and western North Carolina, but which for a time had the appearance of an international incident. A newspaper man went to Wolf Creek and made inquiries concerning this alleged confession and learned that Mr. Morris, about three weeks ago, told his story, implicating several men in the murder, in the presence of several persons, including Dr. L.A. Green, deputy sheriff, Deputy U.S. Marshal, Free Will Baptist preacher, physician, and particularly a terror to evil-doers in Cocke county; Mrs. Green, a granddaughter of Mr. and Mrs. Green; N.T. Presner, postmaster at Wasp, and Mrs. Pardee Morris, wife of the confessor.
It was learned that Dr. Green’s home was about a mile up the creek, and thither the newspaper man set out. A well marked road led up the creek, which found its way to the French Broad river, between two steep mountains. There was little cleared land. Now and then a mountaineer was passed as he hurried along. A store and a couple of cottages was passed in a spot where the creek made a bend and admitted a building stie. A short distance above the store was the home of Dr. Green, a house which for more than 100 years had weathered the storm. Back of the house the mountain towered high, covered with spruce and rhododendron, while to the front and east was perhaps a strip of tillable land 200 feet wide. The dim rays of the sun, the day was cold and cloudy, fell at an angle of apparently 20 degrees, as the sun seemingly had forced itself above a towering mountain peak to the southeast. As the newspaper man crossed the creek and approached the house with its broad, low-pitched veranda a man was standing there. This was Dr. Green, a blacksmith by trade, a man of powerful build, about six feet, two in height, with powerful muscle and a broad chest. Dr. Green is a man who bears the highest reputation in the mountains of Tennessee, where he often makes visits to the homes of its people in the dual capacity of physician and preacher, a doctor of the body and soul as well. He asked the newspaper man into his hospitable home, where in a large fireplace blazed a fire of large hickory logs.
“Yes, Pardee Morris made a confession to me,” said the doctor. “It was along between the 20th and the 25th of November as we was taking Pardee down to Newport. He was a sick man. I had been attending him at his home about four miles up the creek, and we had brought him down this far one night. Me and my wife, and Talbert Fressner and my fourteen-year-old grand-daughter and Pardee’s wife were all in the room around the fire. Pardee seemed to realize that he was near death’s door. He kept saying over loud, “If hit hadn’t been for me lying, Brother Bob would have hung. I can see the rope going ‘round his neck now”
“Why, I asked,” said Dr. Green and Pardee replied: “Because him and the others killed the old Chinaman. Bob got mad because his wife got scared at the Chinaman and he swore he was gwine to kill him. They set dogs on him at Bob’s house and dogged him. Bob, Frank Lamb and Green Kelly and Wade Lawson and Green Lunsford run him to old Nance Williams near Paint Rock. They killed him in the chimney corner. Brother Bob cut his throat in two places, one here and one there. (Illustrating with his hand.) I was hauling lumber for Peter Sissom with a team of oxen and Green Kelly went to Sissom’s and bought an oil barrel and a bushel of corn and said to me, “Want you to haul some corn for me over the mountain.” They put the Chinaman in the barrel. They told me hit was corn, but it seemed to me hit was too heavy for corn. I come on across the mountain, and when I got to the horse shoe bend, just a little above here, I found out what it was and rolled him out of the wagon and rolled the barrel down a steep bank.” Here Dr. Green stopped a moment in recital of Mr. Morris’ confession. After an instant he continued: Pardee said: “Lawrence Waddel told about seeing Frank and Bob Lamb and Green Kelly and Wate Lawson carrying something across the creek, all wrapped up in a sheet. He said it was a still they were carrying into the mountains. Lawrence was mistaken, it was the dead Chinaman they were carrying. He was swung on a pole. They took him way up in the mountains and throwed him down beside an old moss covered spruce log.”
Coming back to the killing, Dr. Green said, “Pardee said, ‘Bob cut the Chinaman’s throat. He and Green Kelly and Bob and Frank Lamb and Green Lunsford and the women got the money and then they tried to pile him off on me to haul over into Tennessee.” During the confession Dr. Green stated that Mrs. Morris, the wife of the confessor, would interrupt him and try to stop him from telling of killing the Chinaman. “Go on Pardee”, Dr. Green would say, “You ought to tell it.” Then Pardee would break out, “Bob is the cause of all my trouble. Him and my family have broke me up and are cause of my condition. I must tell all before I can die.”
Then, said Dr. Green, “Pardee broke out anew. I had to help hunt for the Chinaman, and when they found him they made me serve on the coroner’s jury. I never felt so bad in all my life as when I had to lie to save Bob and I just had to ray in the verdict that the Chinaman came to his death by being murdered. I knew all along that they had murdered the old man, but I did not want to tell on my friends and kinfolks. I just had to tell it before I could die. It has caused me a lot of trouble and worry and it is the cause of my present condition.”
At times while he was telling the story Dr. Green said Pardee would seem to wander off. The worry had affected the old man’s mind and it was on the way to Newport to be confined as being mentally deranged that she was at my house and said he just had to tell of the Chinaman’s murder. He seemed greatly relieved after he had told it. During the recital of the incidents, when his mind would seem to wander off, he would say, “Let me sing a little” and then he would take a line from the old mountain song, “Shoot That Turkey Buzzard.” Then he would say, “I am all right now, where did I leave off telling about the Chinaman?” and when told he would go ahead again.
Dr. Green said that he and also his wife and Mr. Presner would try to see if Pardee knew what he was talking about and they would quiz him about outside matter. “When were you born, Pardee?” the doctor said he asked. “I was born August 8, 1852,” Mr. Morris replied, and to this his wife, Mrs. Morris, vouched. Other questions asked the sick man, showed that his mind was all right.
Dr. Green stated that Mr. Morris seemed weak and feeble and that in his spells he would swear and abuse people, particularly his sons and brother, who he claimed was the cause of his dementia. The Chinaman affair and the fact that blockading convictions; had been made against his family worried the old man.
“Was there any reason?” asked the newspaper man of Dr. Green, “Why what Mr. Morris said was not the truth?” “No.” replied the doctor, “the confession was voluntary, and corresponds with many incidents which have been known for years around here and is undoubtedly the truth.”
The Leaf Chronicle, Clarksville, TN, 11/9/1908, Pg 1
Arrested On Serious Charge
John Meadows, Thomas Patterson and Ed Huff In Trouble
John Meadows, Thomas Patterson and Ed Huff were arrested Sunday on warrants charging them with shooting with intent to kill. The charge was preferred by Claude Suiter, of District No. 18. It is alleged that the men went to Suiter’s home and threatened his life and shot at him, several bird shot taking effect in his back. Their bond was fixed at $1,000 each, which was furnished by Meadows, the others being remanded to jail, pending their examining trial.
The Leaf Chronicle, Clarksville, TN, 4/20/1909, Pg 1
Judge Savage On The Bench
Will Hayes Murder Case Will Be Called In The Criminal Court
Hon. Michael Savage was elected special judge of the Criminal Court this morning by the local bar to preside during the absence of Judge Tyler, who is in Nashville. The first case tried today was that of Ed Huff and Bob Shatlin, who were charged with disturbing public worship. They were found guilty and fined $20 and costs.
Sources for Melvin Thomas Huff:
1910 U.S. Census of Burnett St., Greenville, Greenville, South Carolina; Roll: T624_1461; Page: 17A; Enumeration District: 0019; Image: 216; FHL Number: 137547, Lines 100 next page 1-3, "Robert V. Mace"
Robert V. Mace, Head, M(ale), W(hite), 19 yrs old, Married 1 yr, Born in NC, Both parents born in NC, Spinner in cotton mill
Mary Mace, Wife, F, W, 18 yrs old, Married 1 yr, Born in TN, Father born in NC, Mother born in SC
Annie Huff, Boarder, F, W, 19 yrs old, Single, Born in SC, Both parents born in SC, Spinner at cotton mill, Can read and write
Melvin Huff, Boarder, M, W, 20 yrs old, Single, Born in NC, Both parents born in NC, Weaver in cotton mill, Can read and write
1920 U.S. Census of Census Place: 321 Second, Detroit Ward 4, Wayne County, Michigan; Roll: T625_805; Page: 6B; Enumeration District: 123, Lines 74, "Melvin T. Huff"
Emma Sharp, Head, Rents, M(ale), W(hite), 31 yrs old, Widowed, Immigrated in 1891, Naturalized N/A, Can read and write, Born in France, speaks French, Father born in France, Mother born in NY, landlady rooming house
Melvin T. Huff, Roomer, M, W, 30 yrs old, Single, Can read and write, Born in VA (sic), Father born in AR (sic), Mother born in AR (sic), Recruiting for Marines
Michigan, Marriage Records, 1867-1952
Name: Melvin T Huff
Birth Year: abt 1890
Birth Place: Tennessee
Marriage Date: 17 Jan 1920
Marriage Place: Detroit, Michigan, USA
Residence Place: Detroit, Michigan
Father: Edward Huff
Mother: Arrie Miller
Spouse: Emma Sharpe
Record Number: 188154
Film: 153; Film Description: 1920 Washtenaw-1920 Wayne
Michigan, Divorce Records, 1897-1952
Name: Melvin Huff
Marriage Date: 17 Jan 1920
Marriage Place: Detroit, Michigan
Decree Date: 23 Jan 1922
Decree Place: Michigan, USA
Spouse Name: Emma Huff
Number of Children: 0
Divorce Status: Granted
California Death Index, 1940-1997, Ancestry.com online database, State of California, California Death Index, 1940=1997, Sacramento, CA and State of California Dept of Health Services, Center for Health Statistics, Melvin T. Huff, Social Security #: 54538****, DOB 2/28/1889 in TN, DOD 6/18/1963 in San Diego, CA.
U.S. Veterans Gravesites, ca.1775-2006, Original data: National Cemetery Administration.
Name: Melvin Thomas Huff
Service Info.: CAPT US MARINE CORPS WORLD WAR I, WORLD WAR II
Birth Date: 28 Feb 1889
Death Date: 18 Jun 1963
Interment Date: 20 Jun 1963
Cemetery: Ft. Rosecrans National Cemetery
Cemetery Address: P.O. Box 6237 San Diego, CA 92166
Buried At: Section R Site 196-B
U.S. Army, Register of Enlistments, 1798-1914 U.S. Army, Register of Enlistments, 1798-1914
Original data: Register of Enlistments in the U.S. Army, 1798-1914; (National Archives Microfilm Publication M233, 81 rolls); Records of the Adjutant General’s Office, 1780’s-1917, Record Group 94; National Archives, Washington, D.C., Melvin T. Huff.
Name: Melvin T Huff
Birthyear: abt 1889
Birthplace: Tennessee, United States
Enlistment Age: 22 4/12
U.S., Consular Reports of Marriages, 1910-1949
Contained in this database are reports of U.S. citizens’ marriages abroad submitted by U.S. Consulates between the years 1910 and 1949, Melvin T. Huff, DOB 1889 in Newport, TN, Miriam Pool, DOB 1893 in Drakesville, IO, 21 Sep 1927 in North Compound, Methodist Mission, Tientsin, China, File #133.
Name: Melvin T Huff
Birth Year: abt 1889
Birth Place: Newport, Tennessee
Spouse's Name: Miriam Pool
Spouse's Age: 34
Spouse's Birth Year: abt 1893
Spouse's Birth Place: Drakesville, Iowa
Marriage Date: 21 Sep 1927
Marriage Place: North Compound, Methodist Mission, Tientsin, China
Consular Location: Tientsin, China
File Number: 133
Certificate in File: Yes
California Passenger and Crew Lists, 1882-1957
This database is an index to passenger and crew lists of ships and some airplanes arriving at Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Luis Obispo, San Pedro, and Ventura in the U.S. state of California, between 1882 and 1957., M.T. Huff, Arrival 5/29/1928, DOB 1889 in Newport, TN, Port of Arrival San Francisco, CA, Port of Departure Qinhuangdao, China, Archive information (series:roll number): M1410:234.
Name: M T Huff
Arrival Date: 29 May 1928
Birth Date: abt 1889
Birthplace: Newport, Tennessee, United States
Ship Name: U S Grant
Port of Arrival: San Francisco, California
Port of Departure: Qinhuangdao, China
Archive information (series:roll number): M1410:234
Name: Miriam P Huff
Arrival Date: 29 May 1928
Birth Date: abt 1893
Birthplace: Drakesville, Iowa, United States
Ship Name: U S Grant
Port of Arrival: San Francisco, California
Port of Departure: Qinhuangdao, China
Archive information (series:roll number): M1410:234
1930 U.S. Census of U.S. Marine Corps Military Base on Pueblo Lands, San Diego, San Diego County, California; Roll: 191; Page: 9A; Enumeration District: 55; Image: 195.0, Line 8, "Melvin T. Huff"
Melvin T. Huff, "Mrtes", M(ale), W(hite), 41 yrs old (DOB 1889), Married at age 39 yrs old (DOM 1928), Born in TN, Both parents born in TN, First Sargent in U.S. Marine Corps, Can read and write
1940 U.S. Census, Census Place: 3775 Ocean Front, San Diego, San Diego County, California; Roll: m-t0627-00448; Page: 66A; Enumeration District: 62-20A, Line 1, "Malion T. Huff" (sic, Melvin T. Huff)
Huff, Malion T. (sic), Rents home for $35, Head, M(ale), W(hite), 51 yrs old, Divorced, Attended school through 8th grade, Born in TN, Lived in the same place in 1935, Officer in U.S. Marine Corps
Arizona, County Marriage Records, 1865-1972
Name: Melvin T. Huff
Affidavit or License Age: 51
Affidavit or License Date: 7 Oct 1941
License Place: Yuma, Arizona, USA
Spouse: Helene Aucutt
Description: Marriage Applications, 1941 Sep - Oct
Name: Helene Aucutt
Affidavit or License Age: 38
Affidavit or License Date: 7 Oct 1941
License Place: Yuma, Arizona, USA
Spouse: Melvin T. Huff
Description: Marriage Applications, 1941
Sources for Maggie Pauline Huff:
1920 U.S. Census of Meadow Lane, Hot Springs, Madison, North Carolina; Roll: T625_1294; Page: 15B; Enumeration District: 116; Image: 815, Lines 74-78, "Julius W. Pike"
Julius W. Pike, Head, M(ale), W(hite), 35 yrs old (DOB 1885), Married, Can read and write, Born in NC, Both parents born in US, Railroad section hand
Maggie P. Pike, Wife, F, W, 26 yrs old (DOB 1894), Married, Can read and write, Born in TN, Father born in NC, Mother born in TN
Clyde R. Pike, Son, M, W, 8 yrs old (DOB 1912), Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in TN
Wade E. Pike, Son, M, W, 6 yrs old (DOB 1914), Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in TN
Ray G. Pike, Son, M, W, 4 yrs old (DOB 1916), Born in NC, Father born in NC, Mother born in TN
NC Death Certificate #287, Registration District #58-76, Registered #2, Maggie Pauline Pike, DOD 1/5/1923 in Hot Springs, Madison County, NC
Usual Residence: Hot Springs, Madison County, NC
Female, White, Married to Julius Pike, DOB 6/11/1893 in Cox (sic) County, TN, 28 yrs, 6 mos, 16 days old
Father: Edd Huff (sic), born in Cox (sic), County, TN
Mother: Ira Miller (sic), born in Madison County, NC
Informant: Annie Huff, Hot Springs, NC
DOD 1/5/1923 at 8:30pm
Cause of death: pneumonia following influenza
Burial 1/6/1923 at "Toof Cemetery"
North Carolina Death Collection, 1908-1996 (Provo, UT, USA: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2005), Maggie P. Pike, DOB 1895, DOD 1/5/1923 in Madison County, NC.
North Carolina Birth Index, 1800-2000 (Provo, UT, USA: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2005), Julius Wallin Pike, DOB 10/19/1884 in Madison County, NC, Roll Number: B_C062_68001, Vol 6, Pg 144.
North Carolina Death Collection, 1908-1996 (Provo, UT, USA: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2005), Julius W. Pike, DOB 1885, DOD 5/21/1948 in Madison County, NC.
Sources for Claude Hiram Huff:
North Carolina Birth Index, 1800-2000 (Provo, UT, USA: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2005), Claude Hiram Huff, DOB 6/30/1895 in Madison County, NC, Roll Number: B_C062_68001, Vol 9, Pg 245 .
1930 U.S. Census of 28th St., Newport News, Warwick County (Newport News (Independent City)), Virginia; Roll: 2469; Page: 1B; Enumeration District: 10; Image: 220.0, Lines 75-82, "Claude H. Huff"
Claude H. Huff, Head, Owns home valued at $4000, M(ale), W(hite), 32 yrs old (DOB 1898), Married at age 23 yrs old (DOM 1921), Can read and write, Born in TN, Both parents born in TN, Manager grocery store
Florence M. Huff, Wife, F, W, 27 yrs old (DOB 1903), Married at age 19 yrs old, Can read and write, Born in VA, Father born in VA, Mother born in NY
Thelma I. Huff, Daughter, F, W, 6 yrs old (DOB 1924), Born in VA, Father born in TN, Mother born in VA
Hazel J. Huff, Daughter, F, W, 5 yrs old (DOB 1925), Born in VA, Father born in TN, Mother born in VA
Bernice L. Huff, Daughter, F, W, 4 yrs old (DOB 1926), Born in VA, Father born in TN, Mother born in VA
Geraldine F. Huff, Daughter, F, W, 1 yrs old (DOB 1929), Born in VA, Father born in TN, Mother born in VA
Nellie E. Chilton, Mother, F, W, 55 yrs old, Widowed, Can read and write, Born in NY, Both parents born in NY
John W. Chilton, Brother, M, W, 37 yrs old, Widowed, Can read and write, Born in NY, Father born in VA, Mother born in NY, Quarterman in shipyard
NC Death #19104, Registration District #58-00, Claude Hiram Huff, DOD 8/10/1954 in Hot Springs, Madison County, NC
Male, White, Married, DOB 6/30/1895 in TN, 59 yrs old
Occupation: Self employed Cafe operator
Father: Edward Huff, Mother: Ora Kathrine Miller (sic), Spouse: Mrs. Claude H. Huff in Hot Springs, NC
Served in WWI, SS# 238-54-****
DOD 8/10/1954 at 5:18am
Cause of death: Coronary occlusion
Burial: 8/14/1954 in Fairview Cemetery, Hot Springs, Madison County, NC
Sources for Mattie Ray Huff:
North Carolina Death Collection, 1908-1996 (Provo, UT, USA: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2005).
Name: Mattie Ray Luntsford
Marital Status: Widowed
Social Security Number: 24050****
Date of Birth: 1 Sep 1902
Birth Location: Tennessee
Birth State: Tennessee
Residence County: Madison
Residence state: North Carolina
Date of Death: 30 Dec 1979
Death City: Asheville
Death County: Buncombe
Death State: North Carolina
Institution: Nursing and Rest Homes
Burial Location: Burial in state
Source Vendor: NC Department of Health. North Carolina Deaths, 1979-82
Security Death Index (Provo, UT, USA: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2006).
Name: Mattie Luntsford
Last Residence: 28743 Hot Springs, Madison, North Carolina, United States of America
Born: 1 Sep 1902
Last Benefit: 28753 Marshall, Madison, North Carolina, United States of America
Died: Dec 1979
State (Year) SSN issued: North Carolina (1951-1952)
North Carolina Death Collection, 1908-1996 (Provo, UT, USA: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2005).
Name: Benjamin F Luntsford
Date of Birth: 1898
Date of Death: 23 Oct 1951
Death County: Madison
Death State: North Carolina
Source Vendor: NC State Archives. North Carolina Deaths, 1908-67
Florida Marriage Collection, 1822-1875 and 1927-2001
Name: Huffman Benjamin Luntsford Jr
Marriage Date: 10 Apr 1982
County of Marriage: Escambia
Source: Florida Department of Health
Sources for Swann Burnett Huff:
North Carolina Birth Index, 1800-2000 (Provo, UT, USA: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2005).
Name: Swann Burnette Huff
Date of Birth: 9 Oct 1909
Birth County: Madison
Parent1 Name: Stephen Edward Huff
Parent2 Name: Orah Catherine Huff
Roll Number: B_C062_68001
North Carolina Death Collection, 1908-1996 (Provo, UT, USA: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2005).
Name: Swann Burnett Huff
Marital Status: Married
Social Security Number: 24107****
Father's Last Name: Huff
Date of Birth: 9 Oct 1909
Birth Location: North Carolina
Birth State: North Carolina
Residence County: Madison
Residence state: North Carolina
Date of Death: 28 Mar 1989
Death City: Asheville
Death County: Buncombe
Death State: North Carolina
Institution: General Hospital
Burial Location: Burial in state
Source Vendor: NC Department of Health. North Carolina Deaths, 1988-92
Social Security Death Index (Provo, UT, USA: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2006)
Name: Swann B. Huff
Last Residence: 28743 Hot Springs, Madison, North Carolina, United States of America
Born: 9 Oct 1909
Died: 28 Mar 1989
State (Year) SSN issued: North Carolina (Before 1951)
Social Security Death Index (Provo, UT, USA: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2006).
Name: Nell C. Huff
Last Residence: 28743 Hot Springs, Madison, North Carolina, United States of America
Born: 3 Dec 1909
Died: 19 Sep 1996
State (Year) SSN issued: North Carolina (Before 1951)
If you have any comments, corrections or additional information, please email me at Mom25dogs@gmail.com.
For more information on Hester's family go to my Miller posts .