Sunday, November 4, 2007

Threat to Burn Down Dycusburg (Jan. 21, 1897)

Threat to Burn a Town: Kentucky Negroes Plot Revenge for an Attack on Their Pastor

Paducah, Ky., Jan. 20 - Intense excitement exists at Dycusburg, thirty miles below here, on the Cumberland River, over a threat to burn the town to-night. There is no telegraph station at Dycusburg, and no boat until to-morrow.

The Rev. Mr. Fox, pastor of the colored Baptist Church, is at the bottom of the excitement. Saturday night a mob of fifty masked men went to his house for the purpose of handling him roughly, but he escaped, though pursued and fired upon. Preacher Fox was accussed of paying too much attention to the women of his congregration, and is said to have been the cause of breaking up several families. Fox is married.

A large number of the church people have taken the side of Fox, and, is is said, have threatened to burn the town in retaliation for the attack by the mob. That this threat is not regarded as idle is shown by the action of the Trustees to-day in organizing a guard to patrol and protect the town.

The citizens who warned Fox to leave town say they only did so after making sure that he was an undesirable citizen, to say nothing of his desirability as a spiritual adviser.

From The New York Times, Jan. 21, 1897

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