The Campaign For DA

3.07.2016

Pioneer History Of Wise County


I mentioned I had found this book a few weeks ago, and I've been making my way through it. It was written in 1907 and reads like poetry in addition to the fascinating facts it tells. For example, look at this paragraph about the "Peace Party" which may or may have not consisted of Union sympathizers during the Civil War.  This was after the "Great Hanging" in Gainesville:

The trial commissioners occupied the upper story of the Confederate Arsenal [in Decatur], the office of the latter being on the ground floor. Sentinels were placed about the town, one or two on each road leading therefrom. Mysterious midnight searches, investigations and arrests now followed and the county was thrown into a fit of excitement. The trials began with the arrival of the first prisoners and continued until the question of guilt of all the accused parties was settled. Some were found to have rendered only a perfunctory allegiance to the secret order, and these were ordered detained to be sent later to the Confederate Army. Out of the number tried five were adjudged totally guilty and sentenced to capital punishment. The names of these unfortunates were: John Conn, Ira Burdick, Jim McKinn, Parson Maples and — Ward. John Conn had been a member of the Confederate guard sent from Wise County to Gainesville to remain during the trials there. At the ending of their respective trials each of these men were conveyed to a tree which stood in the Swan pasture at the western edge of town, and hanged by the neck until dead.

Anyone know where Swan pasture is?