Yanceyville, NC

Alleged offense: Political activity
Race: White
Gender: Male
Age: Unrecorded
Legal intervention (in alleged offense): No
Legal intervention (following lynching): Yes
Mob size: 9
Mob members: F.A. Wiley
Alleged victim: Not applicable
Household Status: Married
Occupation: Senator

Members of the Caswell County Democratic party murdered a white man named John “Chicken” Stephens as a part of the Kirk-Holden war. Stephens, a Republican, was attending a Democratic Party meeting on May 21st, 1870 in order to sway a Democrat to run as a Republican for Sheriff. The man Stephens was trying to sway called Stephens to the basement of the courthouse where nine men were waiting. The men held John W. Stephens down and told him to renounce his views before “sentencing” him to death. The men supposedly let him look out the window to his house so he could see his kids one last time before tightening a lasso-style rope around his neck until his jugular was severed. An African American man in the mob had a bucket to collect the blood. When Stephens was dead, the men went back upstairs and carried on their meeting, leaving Stephens’ body downstairs.


Death certificate: None found

Census: None found

News coverage:

The Murder of Senator Stephens Confirmed

Additional Facts Concerning the Murder of Senator Stephens

Affairs in Caswell


Town: Yanceyville

Latitude/Longitude: 36.403076, -79.336348

Rationale: Exact

Additional Resources: None