What happened on Oct. 2, 1900?

This one’s not really for public consumption so much. I just don’t wanna risk losing track of the link I just found.

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The site claims to list black men who were “burned at the stake,” for a variety of reasons. I’ve never heard of this before, but that doesn’t mean anything, as Eclectic’s history is a little foggy that far back.

The site claims, with no further detail, that Winfield Townsend was “burned at the stake” in Eclectic, Ala., on Oct. 2, 1900. If I’m reading correctly, it was for the crime of “attempted assault.”

For one thing, Eclectic wasn’t considered a town until 1907. And if I remember right, the area was largely known as Pleasant Grove or something up until incorporation. I’ll have to check with my history contact on that, as well as the older  folks over on Nichols and Sunset.  I know there are still Townsends in the town’s black community; maybe there’s some family lore that’s been passed down.

I’m not disputing the claim, per se. Just seems like something that someone would have mentioned. And the name and date problems flash big question marks.


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