Thursday, October 3, 2013

Thriller Thursday: Murder at the Poker Game - James Harvey Rector 1882-1934

My great-great granduncle, James Harvey Rector, was a bit of an outlaw. Born June 10, 1882 in Marshall, Madison, North Carolina, he was a younger brother of my great-great grandfather George H. Rector, also of Marshall, NC.

Harvey apparently had a bit of a temper problem, because on November 6, 1911, he shot and killed his neighbor Charley Davis over a game of poker. I believe that Charley Davis may have been a brother to George H. Rector's first wife Molly Davis, my great-great grandmother, but I have yet to solidly prove this. From Page 8 of the November 7, 1911 edition of the Charlotte Observer:



Harvey went on the lam. The great thing about history and genealogy is I caught up with him 24 years later in the death records of Welch, West Virginia, where he died of a gunshot wound to the chest in 1934. It turns out he had been going under the alias of John James since the poker shooting. From page 3 of the January 1, 1935 edition of the Bluefield Telegraph:



My thought when I read that article was “Well, I definitely know the reason for the alias!” Incredible!


In case you were wondering, Alma Phillips was cleared of all charges. 

©copyright Piper Oneto

1 comment:

  1. Wow! What a story. It's amazing he was able to hide his true identity for all of those years. It looks like his temper got the better of him in the end though.

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