Richmond Dispatch

September 19, 1868


In this crime report the Dispatch tells the story of the brutal murder of a quite black man.According to the report he was beat to death after being forced from his bed at gunpoint.While the Dispatch stayed cautiously neutral on the idea that this might have been racially charged, it is clear to see from reading the article that the odds of it being a hate crime appear relatively high (especially from a historical standpoint).


Murder. - We learn that an old negro man living about four miles from Castleton, in this county, was taken from his bed on Monday night last by some two or three men, and when leaving the house he was told if he made any noise he would be killed, His wife, becoming alarmed, ran to the house of a white neighbor, and told him of the facts. He accompanied her to the house, but not seeing or hearing of them, concluded they had taken the old man off; but the next morning he was found half a mile from the house, dead. It is not known whether the men who took him off were white or black. He was a very inoffensive old man. and very industrious. His body was very much bruised, but no cuts about it. It is thought he was beaten to death. - Culpeper Observer.
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Jacob Markman




“Richmond Dispatch,” Reconstructing Virginia, accessed February 1, 2023,