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Home: Regional: U.S. States: Georgia: Muscogee County

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John H. McSWAIN (d. 21 OCT 1901) murdered in Columbus, buried at Clapp's Factory
Posted by: John Mallory Land (ID *****6788) Date: August 27, 2007 at 16:18:15
  of 572

I have only excerpts from the articles about this murder case, but it's enough to paint the picture:

“The funeral of Mr. John H. McSWAIN occurred yesterday morning, the
interment taking place at Clapp’s factory burying grounds.”

[Columbus (GA) Daily Enquirer-Sun newspaper, Thursday, 24 OCT 1901.]


“John McSWAIN, Drunk, Stumbled Against Man and Wife.

“He and Lady Immediately Hurried Across Bridge

“John McSWAIN, aged 36 years, a factory operative, was shot and very
probably fatally injured last night shortly before 8 o’clock on the
east side of Front street, half way between Thirteen[th] and
Fourteenth streets. The shooting was done by a stranger, who was
with a lady, understood to be his wife. Immediately after the affair
occurred the couple crossed over to the Alabama sided. McSWAIN was
drunk at the time, and ran into the lady. McSWAIN lives with his
mother, Mrs. Mary ELDERS, on the upper part of the block, just below
the factory of the Columbus Show Case Company. He went into the
house of a neighbor, Mrs. MILLER, who lives just back of the Davis
warehouse, and three or four doors below the ELDER house. He was
badly drunk at the time, and his…”

“[in]vestigating. The Phenix City and Girard officers were notified
and immediately began the search for the couple. Nobody seems to
know who the couple are. The man is middle-aged, fairly dressed, and
his general description is said to tally with that already given. It
is understood that the lady with him was his wife…”

[Columbus (GA) Enquirer-Sun newspaper, Sunday, 20 OCT 1901.]

“John McSWAIN Died Last Night.

“John McSWAIN, the white man who was shot by some person on Front
street Saturday night, died last night at 6:30 o’clock, at his home
opposite the Muscogee Mills. The funeral occurs at 10 o’clock this
morning from the residence of his mother, Mrs. Mary ELDER on Front
street, conducted by Rev. C. T. CLARK [of the Broad Street Methodist
Church]. The interment will be at Clapp’s factory. Mr. McSWAIN was
twenty-sic years of age…”

[Columbus (GA) Enquirer-Sun newspaper, Tuesday, 22 OCT 1901.]


“Mrs. EVERIDGE, of Phenix, Says That Luther WHEELER…”

“…Maggie EVERIDGE, nee Miss Maggie BLACKMON, who was with him at the
time; Luther WHEELER, of Phenix City, is the man who shot John H.
McSWAIN Saturday night. Upon her statement the police released

“…first supposed that WHEELER had gone there. They wired his
description to the West Point authorities, and asked them to arrest
him. Shortly afterward a man arrived on a train at West Point,
answering the description and…that did the shooting. I see that they
are trying to fasten it upon him, but that is a mistake. It is
another WHEELER. He boards three doors from here, at Mrs. HOGAN’s,
and is a single man, whereas John is married, lives in West Point,
and had nothing whatever to do with this matter. Saturday night, Mr.
WHEELER and I went…”

[Columbus (GA) Enquirer-Sun newspaper, Wednesday, 23 OCT 1901.]

“Luther WHEELER is in Jail Here.

“Surrendered Yesterday at West Point. Prisoner Attacked at Opelika
by McSWAIN.”

“Luther WHEELER, the man whome Mrs. Maggie EVERIDGE says shot John…
John WHEELER, cam to the city with him last night.

“McSWAIN on Same Train.

“Mrs. Maggie EVERIDGE left the city yesterday afternoon on the
Birmingham Train. The authorities had…”

“…___ to use Mr.? McSWAIN became so violent that he was placed under
arrest by the Opelika authorities. The funeral of Mr. John H.
McSWAIN occurred yesterday morning, the interment taking place at
Clapp’s factory burying grounds.”

[Columbus (GA) Enquirer-Sun newspaper, Thursday, 24 OCT 1901.]

“Luther WHEELER; John H. McSWAIN; Justice HARGETT’s…”

“—The preliminary trial of Luther WHEELER, who killed John H.
McSWAIN, did not occur yesterday morning in the recorder’s court, as
set, and…”

[Columbus (GA) Enquirer-Sun newspaper, Saturday, 26 OCT 1901.]

“WHEELER Case to Jury Today. Charged with the Murder of John
McSWAIN, Young Man Is…”

“Murder of John [McSWAIN]…”

[Columbus (GA) Enquirer-Sun newspaper, day, 26 NOV 1901.]

Mary McSWAIN m. 22 NOV 1876 in Muscogee Co, GA, to Henry E. ELDER

1880 Federal Census of Brownville, Lee Co, AL, p. 237B:

Henry E. ELDER/head/married/white/36/GA/painting/SC/NC
Mary ELDER/wife/married/white/36/FL/keeping house/SC/AL
Lula ELDER/daughter/single/white/2/AL/[none]/GA/FL
John McSWAIN/stepson/single/white/8/GA/[none]/GA/FL
William D. McSWAIN/stepson/single/white/6/GA/[none]/GA/FL

I am interested to learn more about John McSWAIN, his background and family connections, and also further details regarding this murder case. Thanks – John in TX

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