Guilford County, NC

Alleged offense: Attempted Rape
Race: Black
Gender: Male
Age: 20
Legal intervention (in alleged offense): Yes
Legal intervention (following lynching): Unrecorded
Mob size: 50-100
Mob members: Unrecorded
Alleged victim: Mahala Sapp
Household Status: Unrecorded
Occupation: “At home”

Authorities arrested and charged Eugene Hairston with assault with intent to rape. Hairston allegedly raped Mahala Sapp near Kernersville. After his arrest, officers transferred him to the jail in Greensboro on August 25, 1887. A mob of 50 to 100 came to Greensboro that night. The mob abducted Hairston after the jailer refused to surrender. The mob hanged Hairston in the suburbs between 2:00 and 3:00 a.m and riddled his body with bullets. After the coroner’s inquiry, a group of African American citizens demanded the identification of the perpetrators. The coroner delayed ruling. Authorities gave Hairston’s body to his family.


Death certificate: None found
Census: 1880 Hairston Census

News coverage:




Town: Greensboro, North Carolina
Latitude/Longitude: 36.045353, -79.910091
Rationale:  Within 2 miles. Calculated location of lynching based on probable location of “Mr. Jackson’s farm” in the suburbs of Greensboro.

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Researcher’s Note: