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St. Louis Post Dispatch
St. Louis Post Dispatch
Contributed by Gigimo

Description: An Old Virginia Rumpus.

Date: February 2 1882

Newspaper published in: St. Louis, MO

A desperate, novel and fatal battle took place in this county this morning on the plantation of William LANIER, Pittsylvania County, between Thomas KING, one of Mr. LANIER's tenants, and KING's mother on the one side, and George SLATE and wife, hirelings of Mr. KING, on the other. A complication of circumstances led to the difficulty, but it was mainly SLATE's aggressive temper and his refusal to deal squarely about some property he had found and refused to advertise. SLATE left KING's employment and came back to demand his wages. Finding KING in his stable, SLATE drew a pistol and told him he would shoot him if he came out of there without bringing with him the disputed property. KING called to his mother to bring him his shotgun. The old lady was approaching with the gun in one hand and a cane in the other. SLATE, seeing this, told his wife, who was with him, to knock the old woman in the head. The old lady was thrown by the younger female, when Mr. KING came running to the aid of his mother. SLATE fired at him but missed. A desperate struggle ensued, in which all four were engaged. KING secured the gun and shot SLATE in the thigh. SLATE's wife then got hold of SLATE himself drew a knife and stabbed him in eight places. Meantime the old lady had been seriously cut and beaten and a large piece bitten out of her arm by the female. It was a desperate life and death struggle. All four of the combatants were covered with gore and fought until they had to cease from loss of blood. When neighbors came on the scene they found KING and his mother dying, and SLATE terribly mangled, so that life is despaired of. The wife was painfully hurt, but it is thought not fatally.

Submitted: 04/01/10

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