Bob Tate

The Cartersville Express
Cartersville, Georgia
March 18, 1875, Page 3
Transcribed by:  

Arrest, Escape, Pursuit and Death.

There was a great deal of excitement in Cartersville on Tuesday night last, upon the killing of a negro by the name of Bob Tate. The particulars given below were obtained from Capt. Jim Wilkerson, the City Marshal, and are therefore authentic:--

It seems that on Monday morning last, before daylight, the store of Mr. W. Satterfield was broken open and robbed of some flour and other groceries, and several dollars in nickels, three cent pieces and greenbacks.  No positive evidence existed that Tate was the burglar, though he was suspected, until Tuesday night, when currency and coin answering the description of that stolen was seen in his possession.  The negro was under the influence of liquor and incautiously exhibited the money to those who were familiar with the character of that stolen from Mr. Satterfield.  The Marshal was at once notified when he proceeded to arrest Tate, who protested his innocence and escaped.  Captain Wilkerson in company with several others then went to the negro’s house and found the groceries lost by Mr. Satterfield.  Subsequently, Tate was again arrested by Capt. Wilkerson and three others who carried him to the very door of the calaboose.  He made a break there and eluded his custodians.  Captain Wilkerson says he could easily have shot him down, but did not desire to do him bodily injury.  Singular as it may seem, the negro again came to town, and entered Stephen’s store, after some articles which he had purchased during the day.  It was then that a third and final attempt was made to secure him.  He seized an ax-helve, however, and fought and struggled through the crowd of whites and negroes who had gathered around to see the fun.  He was pursued for several blocks, and several shots fired at him, but by whom it has been, and we presume always will be, impossible to ascertain.  One thing sure: the negro was killed very dead.

Up to the hour of going to press, the coroner had not arrived, and we cannot tell what the verdict will be.  The negro had been struck with rocks—some thrown by those of his own color—his head cut and bruised—and only the most critical examination will develop how he came to his death.  His body now lies in the court house.

It may be proper to state that the last Grand Jury found a true bill against this fellow for vagrancy, and he bore a very bad character generally. [The verdict of the jury can be found on page 3 of the March 25, 1875 issue.  They found that “Jay Scofield (a white northern man “born and raised the other side of the dividing line.”) then and there feloniously killed the said Robert Tate, against the peace and dignity of the State.”]


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