This week in 1881

February 27th, 2015 by admin

“All young men take warning and never be guilty of theft, however small, because they might deserve the small penalty I am about to suffer. I have five minutes to live. I can think of Heaven in that time. While there is life there is hope.”

After kicking off his slippers:
“I will give them to the poor. The Courier-Journal cannot say I died with my boots on.”

— John Vanderpied, convicted of murder, hanging, Kentucky.
Executed February 25, 1881

The murderer of Rebecca Johnston, Vanderpied climbed the scaffold smoking a cigar. Although his full speech has not survived, it was reported that in it he maintained his innocence and read from the Shelby Sentinel, saying the newspaper misreported the story.

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