Friday, February 19, 2021

Intimidation and Voter Fraud

James Markham, my 2nd great grandfather, was an election manager in Feb of 1889. Grandpa was born about 1831 in South Carolina. He was a slave on the David Buie plantation near Caseyville, MS, where he remained until his death around 1898. The newspaper article below shares that Grandpa was terrorized and could not carry out the line of duty assigned to him. Reconstruction was well over. Democratic candidates and their supporters replaced Republican candidates by the means necessary, through violence and voter fraud.

The Republicans have succeeded admirably up to this time in proving that the election in this county was fair and entirely honest. For a day and a half witnesses were questioned as to why no Republican tickets were sent to Caseyville, one of the largest negro precincts in the county. It was shown that the Republican executive committee had prepared tickets and had forwarded those intended for that box to one Jame Markham, a respectable colored man who votes at Caseyville and that he was charged to have them early on the morning of the election at the voting places. Various Republican witnesses mentioned that Markham had been terrorized and intimidated, so that he was afraid to carry out the line of duty assigned him.

This evening Markham himself was sworn in on behalf of Kernaghan and proceeded to account for the failure of the tickets. He said that before the election of Cleveland he had been a Republican, but after the Democrats had obtained control the administration was so fair that he had changed his politics: that he was born in South Carolina and reared in Mississippi, and loved the Southern people and believed them to be his friends: that he was not consulted about the tickets and that the Republicans are fools if they expect him to peddle Radical tickets for them.

The Brookhaven Leader
Brookhaven, Miss, March 07, 1889

2 comments:

  1. So, his comments were due to him being terrorized?

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  2. Grandpa was terrorized to prevent him from carrying out his political responsibilities of turning in republican votes. Grandpa and his neighbors voted for the party of Lincoln, the Republican Party, in an area that was solidly democratic.

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