Bore a Good Character

At the recent term of the Criminal Court of Bracken County, Kentucky, held at Brooksville, a man seventy-five years old, named Hiram Thomas, was tried on a charge of murdering his wife, Margaret Thomas, on the 19th of March, 1864. The only witness for the prosecution was Isaac Davis, who testified that he was engaged by Thomas to shell corn; that most of the day on which the murder was committed, he and others shelled corn in Thomas' barn; that towards evening he and Thomas took a lot of corn and went to the latter's house for the purpose of shelling until bed time. While they were thus engaged, Mrs. Thomas and Davis commenced joking with the old man in regard to his partiality for other women beside his wife. The conversation was kept up for some time, Thomas, who did not seem to like it, every now and then remarking, “I will kill her.”

Davis, who was shelling corn on the chimes of a barrel, with his head partly in the barrel, stated that he did not pay any attention to the remarks of Thomas about killing, but was suddenly startled by the report of a gun, and turning round found the old man with his gun in his hands, and Mrs. Thomas leaning back in her chair against the wall, with her head partially blown off, and her pipe, which she had been smoking, still in her mouth.

When the witness saw what had been done, he exclaimed: “Hiram, you have killed Aunt Margaret;” to which Hiram replied, “Have l? Then I will kill another,” and commenced reaching for another gun, when Davis ran out of the house and fled from the premises.

The jury brought in a verdict of guilty, and the prisoner was sentenced to be hung on the first Friday in August next. Strong efforts are being made to obtain a new trial for him. The condemned man has been a citizen of Bracken County for thirty-five years, and always bore a good character.


Daily Alta California.  July 28, 1867