Case of George Moore and Robert Roundtree, colored

National Archives Microfilm Publications Microcopy No. 666
Letters received by the office of the Adjutant General
(Record Group 94)

(MAIN SERIES) 1871 -1880
Roll 67, 1872

Papers relating to crimes committed by the Ku Klux Klan in Alabama, 1869 – 1879
Case of George Moore and Robert Roundtree, colored

Head Quarters Detachment 2nd Infantry
Camp near Alpine, Georgia
August 23rd, 1869

Sir,

I have the honor to report that I have made every effort to ascertain the facts relative to the alledged outrage committed upon the persons and property of George Moore and Robert Roundtree, colored, who lived at this place.

It would appear by the testimony obtained that Moore’s report was much exaggerated. It is possible however that the witnesses examined by me have been tampered with.

George Moore’s property amounts to fifteen (15) hogs and one cow. His part of the crop will be worth about forty dollars ($40.00). George Moore and Robt. Roundtree left their property with Mr. Belote to be disposed of by him, they were working his land on the share system. Enclosed please find affidavits of Cynthia Bryant, Rina Barry and J. S. Belote with also Moore’s statement.

Very Respectfully
Your Obt. Sevt.
(signed) W. M. Wallace
1st Lieut. U. S. Inf.
Comdg. Detachment

Since writing the above I have received the enclosed statement of John Hamilton. He sent me word that he know something about Moore’s case but was afraid to see me. I directed him to communicate through Smith which he has done.

A true copy

James Miller
1st Lieut. 2nd Infantry
Post Adjutant

Alpine, Georgia
August 26th, 1869
Cynthia Bryant
Affidavit of relative to case of George Moore

Cynthia Bryant being duly sworn testifies as follows:

I was staying at George Moore’s house on the night of the 31st of July. I slept in the bed with Aunt Rina Barry. At about midnight I was waked up by hearing knocking at the door, the door was knocked down. Then one man asked George if he was Roundtree, he told them his name was George Moore, they then made him go out and I heard them whip him, then they asked him who he voted for, he told them Grant and they cursed him & told him to shut the door then made him open it and made George show them they way to Roundtree’s. The men did not trouble me nor Aunt Rina, only one of them sat on the bed & asked me who was in bed with me, I told them & they went away. We were not troubled any more, about a week after this occurred, George Moore, his wife & Roundtree went off to Rome.

(sd.) Cynthia (X) Bryant

Sworn and subscribed to before me this twenty sixth day of August 1869.
James McCullough
Justice of the Peace

A true copy
James Miller
1st Lieut. 2nd Infantry
Post Adjutant

Alpine, Cherokee County, Alabama, August 1869
Moore, George colored
Makes statement of outrages committed upon himself
and family by a party of disguised men on the 31″ of July

Statement of George Moore (colored)

I live near Alpine, Cherokee County, Alabama. On the night of the 31st July last about forty disguised men came to my house. They knocked at the door, and receiving no reply, they bursted the door open with rails. They then ordered me out, and after coming out, struck me over the head with a pistol. They then ordered me to deliver up my weapons. I gave them a gun I had in the house. They then made me kneel and beat me with a tree branch, they then drove me up and down the road before their horses. I was afterwards struck over the eye and knocked down.

Four men then guarded me while others went in and ravished a young girl (Cynthia Bryant aged seventeen) who was visiting my wife. They then ordered my wife out to gratify their passions and she escaped by stating that she was just recovering from a miscarriage.

They also burst open the house of my neighbour Robert Roundton – struck him with a pistol – kicked him and jabed him in the eye with muzzle of a pistol. He attempted to escape by running and they shot him through the thigh. They also shot one of his cattle. The cause of this treatment they said was that we voted the Radical ticket. I have eighteen head of stock and twenty acres of corn, cotton and potatoes which I cannot go back to recover.

A true copy.
James Miler
1st Lieut. 2nd Infantry
Post Adjutant

Alpine, Georgia
August 26, 1869
Barry, Rina
Affidavit of relation to attack by disguised men upon George Moore and Robert Roundtree (colored)

Rina Barry being duly sworn testifies as follows:

I am the mother of George Moore and was living at his house on the 31st day of July, 1869. On the night of that day the occupants of the house were George Moore, his wife, Cynthia Bryant, and myself. Cynthia slept in the bed with me. Between the hours of midnight and day a party of men I don’t know how many, came to our house, knocked & called for the door to be opened, George did not open it quick enough and they got a rail & knocked the door down, two of the men came in and told me to make a light. Moore’s wife made light up they then told George to go out, I heard them ask George where Roundtree lived, then one said “God dam him he don’t want to tell,” and he then hit him several licks. Afterwards two of the men came to the bed where me & Cynthia was and one of them asked Cynthia who was in the bed with her, she told them Aunt Rina Barry, then they said to me “who is that” I told them, and they left. We were not troubled anymore, the next day I saw Roundtree, he told me the men had been to his house, knocked the door down & called him out they had got a stick to whip him with but he saw a chance to run & made off, they fired at him & he thought he was shot but I saw the pants he had on at the time & there was no hole in them.

(Sd.) Rina (X) Barry

Sworn and subscribed to before me this twenty sixth day of August 1869.
(Sd.) James M. McCullough
Justice of the Peace

A true copy
James Miler
1st Lieut. 2nd Infantry
Post Adjutant

Alpine, Georgia August 26th, 1869
Belote, Joshua
Testimony of relative to case of George Moore versus Band of disguised men

Joshua L. Belote being duly sworn testifies as follows:

I live near Alpine, Cherokee Co., Alabama. George Moore (colored) and Bob Roundtree (colored) did live on my place. On the night of the 31st of July I was awakened about twelve 12 o’clock by a noise as of guns firing, soon afterwards Sarah Roundtree came to my house and begged to be admitted saying “they are trying to kill my husband” at the same time I herd men about the kitchen calling out “get up old man,” soon afterwards they left. I did not get up. On the following day I saw both Roundtree and Moore they told me that the night before the Ku Klux had been at their house. Moore said that they had whipped him but did not hurt him. The men told Moore after whipping him that he was not the man they were after. Roundtree said that they came to his house called him out and asked for a rope, he saw that that they had a rope, he thought they were going to hang him and concluded to risk running, he ran and they fired upon him and he said they hit him in the thigh. I did not examine him, but don’t think he walked lame. I did not hear either of the Boys say how many men there were.

(signed) Joshua L. Belote

Sworn to and subscribed to before me this twenty sixth 26th day of August 1869.
(signed) James McCullough
Justice of the Peace

A true copy
James Miller
1st Lieut. 2nd Infantry
Post Adjutant

Broomtown, Ala.
Aug. 29″ 1869
Hamilton, John
Statement in regard to outrages committed by Ku Klux on Geo. Moore & Robert Roundtree (colored) also on himslef &c.

Broomtown, Alabama
August 29th, 1869

Lieutenant – Sir,

I learn through my friend J. S. Smith that you wanted him to see me concerning the way the Ku Klux had been cutting up. All the information I can give you is what I got from the blacks Tuesday after they was abused on Saturday night. I had a conversation with Reaner, she told me that some disguised men came a way in the nite and ordered them to open the door and before she could get her son George awake they burst down the door and some came in and others surrounded the house and they tuck out George and gave him some wher from 25 to 30 lashes and one came into the bed where she and the a neighbor woman was sleeping and wanted in bed with them and they refused him but he said if they girl that was not in bed with Reaner did not submit to him he would shoot her and had a gun in his hand, the girl commenced crying and said she did not want to dy and then he set his gun down by the bed and stript off the cover and got on the girl in bead with Reaner and some of the rest tried to get George’s wife out doors to some of the other men and let them have to doo with her, they would whip her nearly to death she told them that she had just miscarid and couldn’t they then tuck one of George’s children up by the heals and druget over the floor bumpin its head and said it would make a good pot of soop and then noct George down and left and went some 3 or 4 hundred yards to Robert Roundtree’s and broak down his door and ordered him up, it fritened him till he broke to run, they shot some 15 or 20 round slightly wounding him in the thigh then tuck off his gun and a fine hat. This was all at J. L. Belots or his lands on Saturday nigh before the Congressional Election. On Monday night there was some fifty or sixty at the foundry and shot one colered man thare the doctors said he would be bound to dy, but he is yet a live the ball is lodgd against his neck vain, now this is about all the information I can give you. I got my information from Reaner Barry col’d then but I learn she has sence maried ?Asten Belot – also from George Moore her son that they whipt and nockt down.

I learn from Squair Alexander that he went and investigated the case but when I saw Reaner and George and some other colored folks I told them to not tell anything unless it was to one of the Republican party and they told me they would not. I told them if they told what had tuck place they would kill some of them I also told Reaner she had better not tell any boddy else, for the most of the people if they didn’t belong to the party they seem to favoret if they have not stated to you just as I have I have no dobt but what it is from the caution I gave them as a friend.

They was a meeting in the settlement of wher I live the verry day this develment was don at night, and several of my neighbors was gon, but whether that was what the meeting was for I ant able to say, now sir, having all confidence in my friend Smith I write this to you in confidence that you will not reveal my nam. I have been cald all the hard things that any poor man ever did hear, and has ben nearly murder by a crowd holding me and cuting me with their nives. I would have come to see you before now but I would be in danger of my life if it was nown.

You will do me the favor to not let anyone no that I wrote you, if they is anything more you wish to no from me at any time please send me J. S. Smith for he is a tride friend.

I would live verry much to see you if I could.

Your Truly
Ever More
(signed) John Hamilton

A true copy
James Miller
1st Lieut. 2nd Infantry
Post Adjutant