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Thursday, August 27, 2015

Thriller Thursday: Charles Ward Arrested for Murdering George Gee

Nashville Union and Dispatch, 14 December 1866, page 3

In February 1865, George Gee, his brother Charles Gee, and their cousin L. J. Gee were transporting whiskey from Sumner County, Tennessee to Davidson County, Tennessee. They were using three teams of four mules to transport the whiskey. When they reached the border between Sumner County and Davidson County, Charles Ward and another men began firing at the Gees, and they killed George Gee. They forced Charles and L. J. Gee to knock in the heads of the whiskey barrels. They emptied the wagons, stripped off the men's clothes, and stole the mules.

Charles Ward then got a job working at Williams' saw mills. On 28 July 1866, he married Sarah C. Cummings from Vaughn's Gap. On 10 December 1866, while Charles Ward was killing hogs, he was arrested by William Mayo of the night police and one of Joseph Cheatham's independent detectives. The officers brought Ward to Gallatin, Sumner County, Tennessee, and L. J. Gee identified Ward. He was then brought to the Nashville county jail to be held until the next sitting of the Gallatin court.

Some of my ancestors lived in Vaughn's Gap, although as far as I know none were living there until 1871. William Mayo of the night police was probably my relative. My Mayo ancestors moved to Tennessee from Virginia in the 1840s, and some of their other relatives also settled there. However, I have not yet determined what my relationship to him is.

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