The Bailey-White Feud Revisited

Bailey’s Blood book cover image from Amazon.com – book description at the link, and the book can be purchased there as well.

Dr. Bailey emailed me some additional information regarding the Bailey-White feud that he had collected while doing research for this book, and another entitled, “The Bailey’s of Southeast Kentucky,” which I believe  is a non-fiction book about the family. Many of these newspaper articles may be repeats of my previous post, Kentucky Feuds: Bailey-White, but he has added some additional information, which is quite interesting. I am presenting it as he sent it, except for a few minor formatting issues that I can’t figure out:

Beverly Prior White was Sheriff of Clay County when the Baker-White feud occurred and in 1899, “Bad” Tom White was shot with a rifle from Sheriff White’s house. Immediately after the shooting, the authorities entered the Sheriffs house and found, next to an opened back window, the murder weapon and a hat with BPW marked on it. Beverly was never charged with the crime. However, two years letter, as part of the truce between the Bakers and Whites, Beverly left the county. I speculate that the Bailey Family favored the Bakers in that earlier feud and a general fear of the Whites ability to get away with murder stemmed from that event.

KENTUCKY SHERIFF RESIGNS.

Bev. P. White Has Located Near Lexington.

The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia) May 6, 1901

Lexington, Ky., May 5. — (Special) Bev. P. White, the famous sheriff of Clay county, is now a resident of Fayette county, having recently located here.

White resigned his position as sheriff of Clay county on April 1st by an agreement with the authorities of that county, and at first intended to take up a home in Clark county, but changed his mind and has secured a lease in the Dabney Carr farm, on the Winchester Pike, eight miles from Lexington.

Sheriff White was one of the leaders in the bitter feuds of Clay county, and his resignation and departure from the county was one of the results of the recent all around agreement reached to abandon bloody warfare and engage in peaceful pursuits. He says he will next year buy him a farm and he may enter the ranks of trotting horse breeders.

FEUD SLAYER FLEES TO HILLS

Locomotive Chases Handcar Seized By Fugitives and Party After Shooting

Special to the Louisville Courier Journal, April 7, 1921

Posses tonight are searching the hills of Clay County for John Bailey who today shot to death Beverley White in Versailles at the Cumberland & Manchester Railroad Station here.  The shooting is an outgrowth of a feud between the White and Bailey families and dozens of friends of the slain man are aiding in the search.  Bailey who was arrested after the shooting, escaped from a Deputy Sheriff who was guarding him while awaiting orders to take the prisoner to Pineville for safe keeping.  The fugitive and a party of friends forced a section crew to give up a handcar and escaped on the car, abandoning it twelve miles from here and taking to the woods.

Deputies Give Chase. Shortly after the escape, twelve Deputy Sheriffs, armed with repeating rifles, arrived to escort the prisoner to Pineville.  The officers gave chase on a locomotive and later were joined by friends of White.  In the meantime, it has been reported that friends of the slayer are arming, and it is feared that an outbreak between the two factions is imminent.  The families have been enemies for many years.  The trouble began when two White brothers of Beverley White were killed by two brothers of John Bailey.

Without Eyewitnesses. The shooting today was without an eyewitness, (was there a cab driver) but it is believed that it occurred without words on either side.  White, a well-to-do Woodland (sic Woodland) County farmer, was on the way to visit his old home in Clay County when he was shot.  Additional apprehension is caused here by the fact that Levi Lee, a friend of the Bailey faction is to be tried here Monday on a charge of killing a member of the White family. It has been announced that a large number of Deputy Sheriffs will be sworn in for the trial.

BAILEYS HOLD UP IN DRY MEN

Special to The Louisville Courier-Journal, Lexington, Ky, April 7, 1921

Mrs. Cassie White, widow of Beverley White, who was slain at Barbourville this afternoon, left tonight with her sons, S.P., W.L., and J.D. White, for Barbourville.  Mr. White removed to Woodford County twenty-five years ago so that, he said, his sons might be brought up free from the danger of conflict with the Bailey family. He had been operated on at a northern hospital and was returning to Clay County to look after property interests here.  The body will be brought here tomorrow or Saturday.

BATTLE FEARED IN HUNT FOR FEUDIST

The Louisville Courier Journal,  Barbourville, April 8, 1921)

A pitched battle is expected to take place when officers, with thirty members of the White faction, reach the rendezvous of John Bailey, who made a sensational escape yesterday after shooting Beverley White.  Bailey’s father William Bailey, and brother, James Bailey, accompanied him in the flight.  They are said to be in hiding near their old home and to be surrounded by friends, prepared to offer armed resistance to the posse, which planned to renew its expedition today.

Murder Trial Venued. The posse was outwitted yesterday after using a locomotive to pursue the fugitive, who escaped in a railroad motor car and deserted it, fleeing to the hills before the locomotive had time to bear down on him.  Fearing a reign of lawlessness as a result of renewal of the Bailey-White feud, officials here today obtained a change of venue of the trial of Jack Gilbert, friend of the Whites, whose case was docketed in the Circuit Court here Monday.  (error: see April 7 article where participant is a White, that is John Gilbert White, brother of Beverley) An order was issued today transferring the case to Richmond.

Stormed County Jail. Gilbert killed Levi Lee, a member of the White faction, in this city last October. A few nights after the killing a party composed of Baileys and Lees came here and tried to storm the county jail in which Gilbert was confined.  For two hours they shot up the streets with little opposition so unexpected was the attack.  Officers, however, finally drove them away from the jail.  The members of the raiding party were brothers of John Bailey.

BEV. WHITE IS SLAIN

Corbin Times, Barbourville, April 7, 1921

Beverly White, of Lexington, was shot and killed by John Bailey of Clay county, at the Cumberland & Manchester depot here today.  White had just stepped from a train when the two met and the shooting followed.  Five shots took effect.

The shooting is the outgrowth of the White and Bailey feud.  White is a cousin of the two White brothers who were killed several years ago by Jim and Bev Bailey, brothers of John Bailey.  The latest tragedy has aroused much excitement and further trouble is feared.

On Monday, John Gilbert will be placed on trial here for the killing of Levi Lee who was associated with the Baileys and a large force of deputy sheriffs will be sworn in to prevent trouble.

OLD FEUD WAS BITTER

The Louisville Courier Journal, Frankfort, Ky., April 8, 1921

The murder of Beverley White, former Sheriff of Clay County at Barbourville yesterday, recalls the famous Baker-White feud, in which the family of Beverly White and the Howards warred for years against the Bakers and Philpotts.  One of the grounds for appeal in the case of Jim Howard, accused of the Goebel assassination, was the question asked him on cross examination: “If he did not from a window in the house of Beverley White with the curtains drawn, in the town of Manchester, shoot Tom Baker.”  He said he did not.  The Baker-White feud reached its climax in the killing of Sheriff William L. White, brother of Beverley, by Tom Baker, June 2, 1918.  Baker took to the hills, the Whites armed to the teeth rallied at Manchester to take up the pursuit, and soldiers were sent to prevent further bloodshed.  On arrival of troops Baker surrendered and was tried at Barbourville and convicted, but obtained a reversal of the verdict.  White, lying along the road with a bullet hole in his body, true to tradition of feudal lordship in the mountains, called for his wife and called for his gun.  He said he believed he was dying, “but if I do get well, Tom Baker —” and with the name of his enemy on his lips passed away.  A short time before the death of White, Jim Howard had slain George Baker, father of Tom.  It was urged against Howard that he was in Frankfort seeking a pardon at the time Goebel was killed. Howard’s brother, Wilse had been killed and his father, A.B. Howard, wounded in the course of the feud.  (Remember Wilse Howard killed Jonathan Bailey in 1889)  Attempt was made to implicate Tom Baker in this.  John Baker, brother of Tom, Levi Abner and Theo Cundiff were mentioned in Tom Baker’s trial as victims of gun play.

Beverley White Free From Feud. Beverley White, as far as court records here show, caused none of the trouble in Clay and was directly involved in none of them.  He left there about 25 years ago so that his boys would not inherit the feud.  The Baileys were not involved in the old feud and until about six years ago had been on friendly terms with the Whites, it is said. Two of the Baileys killed a member of the White family.  Beverley White, who resided in Woodford, had no connection with the affair.

POSSE ARE SCOURING THE MOUNTAIN DISTRICTS

Posses Searching for Alleged Kentucky Killer.

Marion Star, The (Marion, Ohio) Apr 8, 1921

Lexington, Kentucky, April 8 –

A posse of citizens, armed with high-powered rifles, scoured the mountain districts of Clay and Knox counties, for John Bailey, Clay county farmer, who, late Thursday, scored a point in a lifelong feud between his family and that of B.P. White, wealthy farmer and coal operator of Barbourville, by shooting and killing White as he landed from a train, near Barbourville.

Meager reports reaching Lexington, today, indicate that friends of both families are arming and a battle is feared when the feudists on the White side attempt to take sides with the searching posse.

The situation in Barbourville, after the murder of Beverly White, was indeed problematic.  There was, clearly something going on between the Baileys and Sheriff Black as well as Deputy Sheriff George Perry.  Sheriff Read P. Black did not act adequately to arrest John and was both forced to resign and was indicted as a result.  The Read Black indictment, dated April, 8, 1921 reads as follows, forgive the confusing language.

Read P. Black willfully corruptly negligently and cowardly fail and refuse to do his duty, as sheriff of Knox County, in failing and refusing to take into his custody John Bailey, on a warrant duly issued for the arrest of the said Bailey on a charge of willful murder in the killing of Bev White and upon knowledge that the said John Bailey and had committed a felony, by failing and refusing to arrest the said John Bailey, and by failing to deliver the said Bailey to the Circuit Court of Knox County and did fail and refuse to accompany members of a sheriff’s posse in pursuit to arrest John Bailey, after he himself had summoned the members of said Posse for said purpose and so designating the members of said posse for said purpose and so designating the said posse in which said parties were summoned.  Said Read P. Black being at the time the duly qualified and acting Sheriff of Knox County at the time.

BAILEY GIVES UP TO SHERIFF IN HARLAN JAIL

Middlesboro Dailey News, April 9, 1921

Alleged slayer of Beverly White surrendered last night at Barbourville; feelings intense.

BATTLE FEARED WHEN POSSE REACHES SLAYER’S HAUNT

FEUDIST SURRENDERS ADHERENTS ARRESTED

Special to the Louisville Courier Journal, Barbourville, Ky., April 9, 1921

Surrender of John Bailey, fugitive slayer, and indictment of his father, William Bailey, brother, James Bailey, Deputy Sheriff George Perry, and partisan, John Lee, were today’s developments in the revival of the White-Bailey feud.  John Bailey, who escaped Thursday after killing Beverley White, surrendered last night while a posse of deputy sheriffs and Bailey forces was continuing its search.  He came here with a dozen armed adherents, and agreed to give himself up after Sheriff Black obtained an order to take him to the Harlan County Jail.  His bodyguard said they would die with their boots on before consenting to his being imprisoned here and exposed to an attack by White followers.  Sheriff Black, five deputies and a number of Bailey men accompanied the prisoner to Harlan. Officers have gone to Harlan to serve warrants on the two other indicted feudists.

BEV P. WHITE KILLED BY JOHN BAILEY

Barbourville Mountain Advocate,  April 21, 1921

Another chapter in the Bailey-White life tragedy was added on Tuesday, April 7th, when Bev P. White of Lexington, died at the hands of John Bailey of Fount.

From the statement of those most familiar with the affair and after much sifting of wild stories, it appears that John Bailey was in the little restaurant at Heidrick depot about 10:30 a. m., Bev P. White appeared to enter.  As he did so a shot rang out, Mr. White started to run around the building, but two more bullets reached him and he fell, dying almost at once.

William Bailey, father of John, was in the courthouse square when the shooting took place.  A man rushed up to him and told him John had shot Bev White.  He went across the street to where Jim Bailey and John Lee were standing by Cole & Hughes store and sought a car to take them to Heidrick.

After the shooting John Bailey handed over his gun to George Perry, deputy sheriff, stating, however that he refused to come to Barbourville jail as his life would not be safe.  His father and brother also refused to let him come.

Read P. Black and deputies arrived on the scene about thirty minutes after the shooting. The Sheriff asked John Bailey to come to town and was joined in his plea by other citizens being assured of his personal safety but he refused on the ground that the Barbourville jail was not a safe place for him and that the Whites from Clay County would kill him there.  He promised to go to another jail as he was willing to submit to the law. Sheriff Black told him he would take him to Pineville and the Baileys agreed to this if the guns of the father and brother were not taken from them.

Sheriff Black then went to town to get an order from Judge Rose for commitment to Pineville, sending the order out with Deputy Sheriff Dan Philpott.  He meanwhile called up Mr. Hollingsworth of the L & N for permission for a freight train to take the party to Pineville.  Philpott served the order on George Perry who had charge of John Bailey, and he promised to see that it was carried out.  H. H. Owens was with Philpott when the order was delivered.  Believing that everything had been arranged, the crowd dispersed.

Before the freight train arrived at Barbourville depot, the Baileys and deputy Sheriff Perry, it is alleged, said they would walk up the track.  They walked about a mile to where a section crew was at work and informed them they had permission to be taken to Fount on the motor car and Mr. McAlester took them there.

When it was seen they had gone sheriff Black enrolled numerous deputies, among them  Judge F. D. Sampson, of the Court of Appeals, but this action was naturally futile.

Judge Sampson, Sawyer A. Smith, Bart S. Reid and others saw to the proper disposition of the body of Mr. White which was taken to Hopper Parlor.

It is a sad affair.  Criticism from the Advocate is useless.  The matter is in the hands of the Circuit Court now in session.  It is their business to act.

BEV WHITE KILLED AT HEIDRICK STATION

Trial of John Bailey, Transferred to Mt Vernon, Shooting reopens, old feud feared

An old feud broke out anew and almost without warning in Barbourville last Tuesday when Beverly P. White, 58 years old, formerly of Clay County, but now of Woodford, was shot and killed as he alighted from the Manchester train at Heidrick by John Bailey, who surrendered several days later upon assurance that he would be transferred to Harlan to await trial.

Change of venue for the trial of the case was entered in the Knox Circuit Court Tuesday and the case transferred to the Rockcastle Circuit Court, the trial to be held in Mt. Vernon.  The trials of James Bailey, William Bailey, John Lee, and George Perry, indicted for conspiracy in connection with the killing will be held also at Mt. Vernon.

White was shot just as he alighted from a train of the Cumberland and Manchester  railroad which operates between Barbourville and Manchester.  Bailey came face to face with White as the latter alighted from the train.  The only person who saw the entire act was a small boy who barely escaped being struck by fire.

White fell, his body pierced by five bullets.  He died almost instantly.  He made no movements.  Following the shooting, Bailey, accompanied by many of his friends who were waiting nearby, seized a handcar from a railroad station crew and fled in the direction of Clay County.  The wife and three sons of Mr. White, S.T. White, W.L. White, and J.D. White Jr. who live now in Woodford County near Lexington came to Barbourville to return the body of the slain man to the Blue Grass for burial.

The slain man, according to his wife moved his home to Central Kentucky almost twenty five years ago to escape any further conflict between himself and the members of the Bailey family.  At that time the two families, both of which have large connections in the surrounding sections of Manchester and Barbourville were on bad terms.  W.L. White said, “Father moved from the mountains down to Central Kentucky to keep us boys from being dragged into the trouble between the families.  He thought that by moving away perhaps the ill feelings would gradually be out.”

The shooting of White Thursday is the first clash that has occurred between the families within the last six years.

A possible cause of the shooting Thursday was given by the three men who said their father had interested himself on the behalf of John Gilbert who is at the present time under indictment in Barbourville for the killing of Levi Lee.  Lee it is said, was closely associated with the Bailey family who are said to have resented the assistance being given Gilbert by White.

The case against Gilbert and also an accomplice in the killing of Lee were transferred recently to the Madison Circuit Court.  Both men had their examination trial heard by Judge Ingram in the Barbourville Court several months ago and were held on the charge.

Shot Dead.

Pulaski News Apr 1921

Somerset, Ky., Friday April 15, 1921.. Mrs. Edward Baute of this city received word last Friday that her father, Beverly White, was shot and killed by John Bailey, of Clay County.  The shooting occurred at Heldrick Depot of the Cumberland and Manchester Railroad shortly after Mr. White arrived at the depot.  Bailey is said to have opened fire without a word being spoken.  The shooting was the outgrowth of a family feud which started twenty-five years ago.  Mr. White moved away from the scene and had not been back since that time.  Bailey had been captured and is in jail at Harlan.  Feeling against him is high.  Mr. White was one of the wealthiest and most respected farmers in Central Kentucky.

The indictment of John Bailey reads:

“In the name and by the authority of the commonwealth the grand Jury of Knox County does further charge that the said John Bailey, did then and there on the day and date above mentioned unlawfully, willfully, feloniously, and of their malice aforementioned did kill and murder the said Beverly P. White, by shooting and wounding him with guns and pistols, loaded with powder leaden balls and other hard and explosive substances, from which said shooting and wounding the said White did then and there die.

“And the grand Jury does further charge that the defendant, Jim Bailey, Wm. Bailey, John Lee, Geo Perry, were then and there and near enough to and did unlawfully, willfully, and feloniously, and of their malice aforethought, aid, abet, assist, council and advise the said shooting of the said Beverly P. White by the said John Bailey, in the manner and form set above.”

The indictment of Read P. Black reads:

“The grand jury of Knox County, in the name and by the authority of the Commonwealth of Kentucky accuses Read P. Black of the offence of Non Feasance in Office.  On the 8th day of April, 1921 aforesaid did unlawfully, willfully, corruptly, negligently and cowardly fail and refuse to do his duty, as sheriff of Knox County, in failing and refusing to take into his custody John Bailey, on a warrant duly issued for the arrest of the said Bailey on a charge of Willful Murder in the killing of Bev White and upon knowledge that the said John Bailey had committed a felony, by failing and refusing to arrest the said John Bailey, and by failing to deliver the said Bailey to the Grand Jury of Knox County and did fail and refuse to accompany members of a sheriffs posse in pursuit to arrest the said John Bailey, after he himself had summoned the members of said posse for said  purpose and so designated the said purpose of which said parties were summoned.  Said Read P. Black being at the time the duly qualified and acting sheriff of Knox County at the time.”

John was tried in Mount Vernon, Kentucky and his trial was reported in the newspapers of the day.

TROOPS CALLED TO QUELL NEW OUTBREAK OF OLD BAILEY-WHITE FEUD IN KENTUCKY FOLLOWING KILLING OF KNOX COUNTY MAN

William Lee Shot Dead by Bart Reid, Former Army Officer, Who Is Said to Have Given Offense by Talk about Indictment of Lee’s Brother — In Family War of Many Years.

BARBOURVILLE, Ky., June 7 – State troops were called out here tonight to stop a threatened outbreak following an affair today in which William Lee, of upper Knox County, was shot and killed by Bart Reid, former army officer.

Lee is said to have threatened Reid because of statements the latter is alleged to have made in connection with indictments returned against Jim Lee, his brother, charged with shooting Josh Faulkner last week. It was feared that Lee’s friends might try to avenge the killing.

Old Feud Feared.

The Bridgeport Telegram

(Bridgeport, Connecticut) Jun 8, 1921

LOUISVILLE, Ky., June 7. – Reports reached here today that the Bailey-White feud had broken out afresh in the vicinity of Barbourville, Ky., today and that one man had been killed.

Another report from Frankfort said Governor Edwin P. Morrow had been asked to send state troops to the scene of the trouble.

Meanwhile John Bailey, who on April 7 was credited with renewing the feud of twenty years between the Baker and White families when Bevereley White was shot and killed in Knox county, remains in jail in Louisville. He was brought here, authorities say, to remove him from the jurisdiction of friendly court influences at Mt. Vernon, which the state said it had reason to believe, would have released him on motion for bail and habeas corpus proceedings.

Reports of a second renewal of the feud are widespread, but verification is difficult owing to meager lines of communication.

COURT GUARDED AS TRIAL OPENS

Kentucky feudist faces jury on Charge of Murder

The Lima News, Lima, Ohio, Mount Vernon Ky., August 8, 1921.

With twenty-five national guardsmen from London, and twenty special Deputy Sheriffs on guard, the Rockcastle Co. court-house presented a martial appearance as the case of John Bailey, Jr., slayer of Beverley White, was called for trial here today.  Bailey’s case was brought here on a change of Venue from Knox Co., where the slaying occurred.  Approximately 100 members of the Bailey-Lee clan and the Whites opposing factions in the most bitter mountain feud that has torn eastern Kentucky in recent years, were present for the opening of the trial.

FLAREUP FEARED.  The troops and special deputies were summoned to keep down any possible flareup of the feudal spirit that in the last few years has caused a number of deaths on both sides of the mountain war and which in the last quarter of a century has resulted in possibly scores of murders.

Judge B. J. Bethurum, who is conducting the court here, asked for special guards for the court room.

Major James L. Dillon, in charge of the guardsmen, has issued warning to the clansmen against carrying concealed weapons during the trial.

FATHER TO BE TRIED.  The killing for which Bailey is to be tried occurred on April 7, last at Heidrick’s Station, near Barbourville.  Bailey, with his father, William Bailey, a brother, James Bailey, and a deputy sheriff named Perry, took to the woods but surrendered two days later and was taken to the Harlan Co. jail.  Later he was transferred to Mount Vernon and then to Louisville and finally was granted bail at Mount Vernon.  John Bailey was indicted on the charge of willful murder and for this he is to be tried.  His father, brother, and Perry have been indicted on the charge of conspiracy to murder Beverley White and their cases are set for this term.

Although the best of order is being kept here by the state troops and special deputies, the White and Bailey-Lee clans present somewhat the appearance of wrestlers prepared to leap at one another.  The Whites have made the Rockcastle hotel headquarters for their adherents while the Baileys and Lees are putting up at a boarding house.  On the street one seldom sees a member of one opposing clan on the same side with members of the other.

TRIAL OF BAILEY OPENS TODAY AT MOUNT VERNON

Middlesboro Daily News, Mount Vernon, Ky, Aug 22, 1921,

With 25 National Guards men from London, and 20 special Deputy Sheriffs on guard, the Rockcastle County Courthouse today presented a martial appearance as the case of John Bailey, J.R.., slayer (of) Beverly White, was called for trail.   Approximately 100 members of the Bailey-Lee clan and Whites, opposing factions in the most bitter mountain feud that has torn Eastern Kentucky in recent years are present for the opening of the trial, among them are William Bailey, father of the defendant, several of his sons and a number of his kinsmen and representatives of the White family.

History of the Case; John Bailey was arrested the night of April 9, voluntarily surrendering at Barbourville to Sheriff Byron P. Walker.  Bailey had been at large for two days following the killing on April 7 at Heidrick’s station, one mile from Barbourville, of Beverly D White, of Versailles.

White was killed according to early versions of the trouble, when he stepped into a restaurant to obtain a valise he had left there while he proceeded into Clay County to look after some timber and mining lands he owned.  White had moved out of Knox County many years before to avoid bringing up his children in the atmosphere of the feuds, one of which then was ranging between his family and the Bailey family.  He had lived in Woodford County during that period, making periodical trips into Knox and Clay Counties to look after his property.

The trip that ended in his death started from Rochester, Minn. where White had gone for an operation.  Instead of going home he went to Clay County to look after his interests and was on his way home when slain.

White’s body, according to reports from Barbourville, lay where it fell for some time after the shooting.  Bailey, admittedly the slayer, remained in Heidrick station with his father and adherents of the family, until Sheriff Walker arrived.  The Baileys refused to allow John to be taken to the Knox County jail and the Sheriff returned to Barbourville to get permission to take him to Bell County.  While the sheriff was gone the Baileys left the scene, seized a motor car used by a railroad section gang and fled.

On the night of April 8, Bailey surrendered under guard of his father, William Bailey, his brother, James Bailey and Deputy Sheriff Perry, an adherent of the family.  He was taken to Harlan County Jail.  In Harlan County, Bailey was denied bail and later was removed to Mount Vernon.  Efforts to get bail were renewed and the police judge of Mt Vernon was going to hear the petition when prosecution appealed to the State Court of Appeals for a writ forbidding the hearing.  A temporary writ was granted and Bailey was removed to County jail at Louisville.  He remained there until the County Judge returned to Mt Vernon and on hearing granted bail.

Up to the time of the starting of the trial Bailey was free on bond.

RIVAL FACTIONS GROWING LARGER

Soldiers Keep Disorder Down At Mt. Vernon

John Bailey, Jr., Alleged Slayer of Beverly White, Goes To Jail.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Aug 22, 1921

MOUNT VERNON, Ky., Aug. 22 – Bailey-Lee and White rival clansmen numbering 100 are under arms here today for the opening trial of John Bailey, Jr., alleged slayer of Beverly White.

A detachment of the London cavalry troops, K.N.G., are camped on the court house grounds, dispatched here by Governor Morrow, upon request of the Mount Vernon authorities who fear trouble before the trial ends.

No trouble occurred yesterday. Incoming trains brought reinforcements of the opposing factions and many other feudists are arriving this morning.

ARMED MEN FLOCK TO FUEDIST’S TRIAL

Oakland Tribune (Oakland, California) Aug 22, 1921

MOUNT VERNON, Ky., Aug. 22. – With twenty-five National Guardsmen from London and twenty special deputy sheriffs on guard, the Rock Castle courthouse presented a martial appearance, when the trial of John Bailey, Jr., alleged slayer of Beverly White, was called here today. Approximately 100 members of the Bailey-Lee clansmen factions, in the most bitter mountain feud that has torn eastern Kentucky in recent years and which is said to have resulted in a score of killings in almost as many years, were present for opening of the trial.

Major James L. Dillon, in charge of the guardsmen, has issued warning to the clansmen against carrying concealed weapons during the trial.

The killing, for which Bailey is to be tried, occurred on April 7 last at Heidricks Station.

RIVAL FACTIONS GROWING LARGER

Soldiers Keep Disorder Down At Mt. Vernon

John Bailey, Jr., Alleged Slayer of Beverly White, Goes To Jail.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Aug 22, 1921

MOUNT VERNON, Ky., Aug. 22 – Bailey-Lee and White rival clansmen numbering 100 are under arms here today for the opening trial of John Bailey, Jr., alleged slayer of Beverly White.

A detachment of the London cavalry troops, K.N.G., are camped on the court house grounds, dispatched here by Governor Morrow, upon request of the Mount Vernon authorities who fear trouble before the trial ends.

No trouble occurred yesterday. Incoming trains brought reinforcements of the opposing factions and many other feudists are arriving this morning.

NINE JURORS ACCEPTED BY STATE WITHIN HOUR AFTER COURT OPENED

Middlesboro Daily News, Mount Vernon, Aug 23, 1921

Selection of the jury which is to try the case against John Bailey, famous feudist for the murder last April in Knox county of Beverly D. White, of Versalles, started with the opening of court here today, the court having adjourned yesterday on account of absent witnesses.

In one hour after the court opened nine men were in the jury box accepted by the state. Seated at the counsel table with Bailey are his father and mother and two brothers, Jim and George Bailey (George Lee).  On the opposite side of the room is J. D. White, a brother of Beverly and three sons of the dead man.

Major Dillon, of London, who is in charge of the state cavalry men doing guard duty and Sheriff Lankford have the situation well in hand to all appearances.  Although the town is filled with Bailey, Lee and White adherents of both factions of the famous Clay-Knox county feud, neither side is apparently looking for trouble.  Search of all persons entering court room today failed to disclose any weapons

FEUD FACTIONS MEET IN COURT

Baileys and Whites Face Each Other Today.

Force Prepared To Preserve Order During the Trial of John Bailey for Murder.

Marion Star, The (Marion, Ohio) Aug 23, 1921

Mt. Vernon, Kentucky, Aug. 23 – Baileys and Whites sat facing each other in the drab circuit court-room of Rock Castle County, today.

Had they met under different circumstances, everything might not have been so calm.

But here automatic guns of the state troopers helped to inspire a respect for the law and to frown on feud methods of settling conspiracies.

And the enmity of the member of the feud factions was masked behind expressionless faces.

Court routine took its customary monotonous course. Attorneys for John Bailey, accused of the murder of Beverly White, asked for continuance of the trial on account of a witness. Circuit Judge B.J. Bethurum appointed a special bailiff, to be accompanied by two soldiers, to arrest four missing witnesses.

The Whites and Baileys left the court-room and went their respective ways. The London cavalry troopers and twenty special deputies kept a center course. Realization that the slightest dispute, even between minor members of the clans might precipitate a general clash, kept the troops vigilant to keep the factions apart.

Every person entering the court-room was searched. But the warning of Major James Dillon, commanding the troops, had been heeded. Weapons had been left in the rooms.

A few knives were collected.

TROOPS ON GUARD AT MURDER TRIAL

The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia) Aug 23, 1921

Mount Vernon, Ky., August 22.– With twenty-five national guardsmen from London and twenty special deputy sheriffs on guard, the Rock Castle county courthouse presented a martial appearance as the case of John Bailey, Jr., alleged slayer of Beverly White, was called for trial here today. Bailey’s case was brought here on a change of venue from Knox county, where the slaying occurred. Approximately 100 members of the Bailey-Lee clan and the Whites, opposing factions in the most bitter mountain feud that has torn eastern Kentucky in recent years, were present for the opening of the trial. The troops and special deputies were summoned to keep down any possible flare up of the feudal spirit that in the last few years has caused a number of deaths on both sides of the mountain war and which in the last quarter of a century has resulted in possibly a score of killings.

Judge B.J. Bethurum, who is conducting the court here, asked for special guards for the courtroom.

Major James L. Dillon, in charge of the guardsmen, has issued warning to the clansmen against carrying concealed weapons during the trial.

The killing, for which Bailey is to be tried, occurred on April 7 last at Heidrick’s station near Barbourbille.  Bailey was with his father, William Bailey; a brother, James Bailey, and a deputy sheriff named Perry, took to the woods but surrendered two days later and was taken to the Harlan county jail. Later he was transferred to Mount Vernon and then to Louisville and finally granted bail at Mount Vernon. John Bailey was indicted on the charge of wilful murder and for this he is to be tried. His father, brother and Perry have been indicted on the charge of conspiracy to murder Beverly White and their cases already are set for this term.

Although the best of order is being kept here by the state troops and special deputies, the White and Bailey-Lee clans present somewhat the appearance of wrestlers preparing to leap at one another. The Whites have made the Rock Castle hotel headquarters for their adherents, while the Baileys and Lees are putting up at a boarding house. On the street one seldom sees a member of one clan on the same side with members of the other.

When court hour approached this morning, according to officials, there was no indication of a continuance of the case.

MOUNTAIN FEUD CALLS FOR DRASTIC MEASURES

The Kingsport Times (Kingsport, Tennessee) Aug 23, 1921

Mount Vernon, Ky. – The first day of the John Bailey murder trial, growing out of the Bailey-White mountain feud, was productive of nothing more than the search of every person who entered the court room for weapons. Soldiers and deputy sheriffs stopped each clansman as he entered the door. None resisted the search and no weapons were found except a few pocket knives. Even the women were not exempt from search.

When the case was called both the commonwealth and the defense asked for a continuance because essential witnesses were absent.

The prosecution asked for attachments for four and the defense for nine material witnesses. Circuit Judge Bethurum appointed Sheriff Walker to deputize two soldiers and bring them into court, and adjourned court until Tuesday.

The sheriff was also ordered to establish a censorship of telephone wires and instructed to prevent the transmission of any messages which might inform the missing witnesses of his order.

SEARCH AUDIENCE AT FEUD TRIAL

New York Times August 23, 1921

No Weapons Found on Bailey-White Clansmen When Kentucky Murder Case is Opened. Troups Keep Order. Thirteen Witnesses  Still Missing – Judge Issues Writ for Them and Forfeits Bond on One

Mount Vernon, Ky, Aug. 22- The first day of the John Bailey murder trial, growing out of the Bailey-White mountain feud, was productive in nothing more thrilling than the search for weapons. Of every person who entered the court room, even the women not being exempt. Soldiers and deputy sheriffs stopped each clansman as he entered the doorway. None resisted the search and no weapons except a few pocket knives were found

When the case was called both the Commonwealth and the defense asked for a continuance because essential witnesses were absent.  The prosecution asked for a attachments of four, and the defense for nine material witnesses.

Circuit Court Judge B. J. Bethurum appointed Sheriff Walker to deputize two soldiers and bring them into court, and adjourned court until tomorrow. The sheriff was also ordered to establish a censorship of telephone wires, and instructed to prevent the transmission of any messages which might inform the missing witnesses of his order.

Walter Jackson of Corbin, whose absence at a previous calling of the case caused a delay in the trial, could not be found today, and the court ordered the bond of $500 to be forfeited.

With twenty five National Guardsmen from London and special deputy sheriffs on guard, the Rockcastle County Court House presented a material appearance.  Although the best of order so far has been kept in the town by the State troops and special deputies, the White and Bailey-Lee clans present somewhat the appearance of wrestlers preparing to leap at one another.  The Whites have made the Rockcastle hotel headquarters of their adherence, while the Baileys and Lees are putting up at a boarding house. On the street one seldom sees a member of one opposing clan on the same side with members of the other.

The killing of Beverly White for which John Bailey Jr. is to be tried occurred on April 2 at Hendrick’s station near Barbourville. Bailey with his father William Bailey; a brother, James Bailey, and a Deputy Sheriff named Perry took to the woods, but surrendered two days later, and was taken to the Harlan County Jail. Later he was transferred to Mount Vernon, and then to Louisville, and finally bail was granted at Mount Vernon.

John Bailey was indicted on a count of willful murder. His father, brother and Perry have been inducted on the charge of conspiracy to murder Beverley White and their cases are set for this term.

MORE JURORS NEEDED IN TRIAL

Logansport Morning Press (Logansport, Indiana) Aug 24, 1921

MOUNT VERNON, Ky., Aug. 23.– With eleven men in the jury box and no more available for duty until they can be summoned by Sheriff Tip Langford, the trial of John Bailey, mountain feudist, charged with murder of Beverly D. White of Versailles, was adjourned this afternoon until 9 o’clock tomorrow morning. The sheriff and his deputies spent the afternoon and night summoning a special venue of one hundred men, ordered by Judge Bethurum from which to obtain a jury.
Bailey tonight was free under a new bond executed this afternoon before the county clerk.

NEW SHERIFF APPOINTED FOR TRIAL

Tip Langford disqualified on affidavit John White alleging prejudice

Middlesboro Daily News, Mount Vernon, Ky., Aug 25, 1921

Sheriff Tip Langford was today relieved of further duty in connection with the trial of John Bailey, mountain feudist, who is charged with the murder of Beverley White.  Lanford was disqualified on the affidavit of John White, a brother of the slain man, who asserted his belief that Langford was prejudiced in favor of Bailey.  K. J. McKiney of Broadhead, was appointed Sheriff to handle the case.  The temporary Sheriff was ordered to summon a jury from the newly filled jury wheel.  Irregularities in connection with witch caused the jury to be discharged yesterday.

BAILEY BONDSMAN KILLS WATT NORTON AT MOUNT VERNON

Middlesboro Daily News, Mount Vernon, Ky., Aug 25, 1921

At a late hour last night Watt Norton died from wounds received when he was shot by James Winstead at the Norton home ten miles from Mt. Vernon.  Winstead is a bondsman for John Bailey, who is on trial here for the murder of Beverley White.  Winstead surrendered to the officers and is in jail charged with murder.  It is said they renewed an old quarrel growing out of a suit for a roadway across the Norton farm.

BAILEY JURY IS ACCEPTED

Middlesboro Daily News, Mount Vernon, Aug. 26, 1921

The jury which will try the case against John Bailey, charged with slaying Beverly White at Barbourville, was completed just before the noon adjournment of court today.

RENEWAL OF FEUD LEADS TO KILLING

The Kingsport Times (Kingsport, Tennessee) Aug 26, 1921

Mount Vernon, Ky. – Watt Norton died last night, after having been shot by James Winstead at Norton’s home, ten miles from here.

Winstead is a bondsman for John Bailey, on trial for slaying Beverly White. Winstead surrendered and is in the county jail, charged with murder.

The tragedy is the renewal of an old quarrel growing out of a suit to locate a roadway across Norton’s farm.

The jury to try John Bailey was completed before the noon adjournment of court today.

WHITE KILLED WITHOUT CAUSE

Is what prosecution attempting to prove in trial at Mount Vernon

Middlesboro Daily News, Mount Vernon, Ky., Aug. 27, 1921

The taking of testimony intended to show that John Bailey, the mountain feudist, shot Beverly White without provocation and was a part of a prearranged plot of the Bailey family continued as the trial of the case was resumed today.  Squire Bate of Pineville was on the stand today and said he saw Bailey open fire on White and that at no time did White make any demonstration toward the slayer.

BAILEY’S FATE IN JURY’S HANDS LATE TODAY

Prosecution Introduces Rebuttal Testimony After Bailey Tells Own Story

Middlesboro Daily News, Mount Vernon, Ky., Aug 29, 1921

The fate of John Bailey, mountain feudist, who shot and killed Beverly White, last April, is expected to be in the hands of the jury late today or early tomorrow morning.

The defense closed its case at 11 o’clock and the state prepared to introduce rebuttal witnesses.

When court convened today the defense had a number of witnesses present and the prosecution is reserving several for rebuttal purposes.

Taking the stand in his own behalf Saturday, John Bailey, feudist, stated he shot Beverly  D. White, of Versailles, because he feared for his life and White was trying to draw a pistol, Bailey told the Rockcastle County Jury which is hearing evidence on the charge of murder placed against Bailey as a result of the killing at Heidrick’s Station, Knox County, last April. Bailey was the first witness for the defense.

The state closed its case unexpectedly after court reconvened at 1 o’clock Saturday afternoon.

B.P. Walker, Sheriff of Knox County, introduced into evidence the clothes White wore the day he was slain and explained the various bullet holes in the clothing.  The bullets that killed White and which were taken from his body also were introduced.

Mrs. Cassie White, widow of the slain man, testified as to her husband’s physical condition immediately prior to the killing.  She said that he was in very bad health and immediately prior to the shooting had returned from Rochester, Minn., where he underwent an operation.

After hearing Mrs. White, the state rested and the defense opened with the defendant on the stand.

Bailey’s Story. Bailey told the jury that he had made two trips to the restaurant owned by Hugh Hammond, a cousin.  The first trip was to see Hammond about some money the latter owed him, Bailey said.  The second trip was to ask Hammond, who usually took his meals at the boarding house of John Riley, and where the Baileys always boarded when in the village, if he was going to dinner.

Bailey said he had been standing inside the lunch room drinking a bottle of soda while he waited for Hammond.  When he sat down the bottle, Bailey said, White was standing inside the door reaching for his suitcase which stood inside.  Bailey said he tried to go out the door and White turned to him and said, “What the hell are you doing here?” at the same time putting his hand on his pistol in the side pocket of his trousers.

Bailey said that the pistol apparently would not come out, but feared that White would get it out and shoot him, so he opened fire.  White was facing him when the firing started, Bailey said, but turned immediately with his left side toward the gun.

Asked why he kept firing after White turned away, Bailey said that he was frightened and that it looked like White would get his gun out.

Bailey denied speaking to White on the train approaching Heidrick’s station.  He said, however, that he saw White there.

Why So Many in Town. Explaining the presence in the town of so many Bailey adherents, the defendant said he promised Sawyer Smith, of Barbourville, to come to that place some time early in court week and was on his way to that place.  He said the reason he did not go was that the taxicab in which he had expected to ride to Barbourville was gone when he left the lunch room the first time.  His father was accompanying him to Barbourville, Bailey said, and George Perry, a Deputy Sheriff, had been in the village serving papers on some witnesses.

Bailey underwent a stiff cross examination by A. Floyd Byrd, of Lexington, a special prosecutor in the case.  Bailey stuck to his statements throughout.

Other Evidence. Thomas E. Cockman, a railroad man, who was on the second floor of the railroad station when the shootout occurred, testified for the defense that White had his overcoat on his left arm, as he approached the lunch room instead of the right as several state witnesses testified.

C.C. Cobb and John Williamson testified they saw Louis Munholland take a 32-caliber automatic pistol out of White’s pocket and that Munholland had to insert his fingers in the pocket to untangle the gun.  They admitted on cross-examination that the right leg of the body was drawn up and that this might have prevented the pistol being easily removed.

The defense is expected to make an effort to read the testimony of Munholland, who is now dead, given at earlier hearings of the case.

Closing of the case by the prosecution and the speed with which the defense was conducted came as a surprise and court attaches tonight were of the opinion that the case might reach the jury Monday night.  Defense attorneys, however, were unwilling to say how many more witnesses they would introduce and the state was not prepared to say what witnesses they would use in rebuttal.  Several hours will be given over to arguments by attorneys before the jury gets the case for final action.

ATTORNEYS ARGUE IN BAILEY CASE

Prosecution Asks he be Sent to Electric Chair While Defense Asks Acquittal

Middlesboro Daily News, Mount Vernon, Ky., Aug. 30, 1921,

With no time limit placed on the arguments for either side, attorneys for the defense opened the address to the jury in the case of John Bailey, charged with the murder of Beverly White, in the circuit court here today.  Defense attorneys pleaded for acquittal on the grounds that Bailey shot in self defense, stressing the claim of the defense that White was attempting to draw a pistol when the defendant opened fire.

Commonwealth Attorney Flippin, for the prosecution, followed Owen and arguments closed just before noon.  Flippin flayed Bailey as a cold blooded murder and asked that he be sent to the electric chair.

BAILEY GUILTY OF FIRST DEGREE MURDER SAYS MT VERNON JURY

Motion for New Trial Postpones Execution of Sentence for Sixty Days.

Bailey taken to Danville for Safe Keeping

Middlesboro Daily News, Mount Vernon, Aug 31, 1921,

John Bailey, the mountain feudist, was found guilty of murder in the first degree by the jury in Rockcastle circuit court here today.  Punishment was fixed at life imprisonment in the State penitentiary.  He was convicted of the murder of Beverly D. White last April.  Motion for a new trial was immediately filed, thus suspending execution of the sentence for sixty days.  Bailey was ordered taken to the County Jail at Danville for safe keeping.  Bailey took verdict calmly.

KENTUCKY FEUDIST IS GIVEN LIFE SENTENCE

Eau Claire Leader (Eau Claire, Wisconsin) Sep 2, 1921

MT. VERNON, Ky. – John Bailey, mountain feudist, who has been on trial here for more than a week, on Wednesday was found guilty of murder and sentenced to imprisonment for life.

Bailey shot and killed Beverly D. White, last April. The tragedy was the outgrowth of a feud of 20 years between the Bailey and White families, whose kin and clansmen gathered here in large numbers for the trial.

State troops guarded the courthouse.

COURT PUT UNDER ARMED GUARD

Precautions Taken as Kentucky Feudists Go on Trial

MACHINE GUNS ARE POSTED

Baily Family Accused of Plot to Kill B.D. White

Lima News (Lima, Ohio) Dec 6, 1921

FRANKFORT, Ky. — (By Associated Press) Thirty Kentucky national guardsmen and three commissioned officers, armed with pistols, rifles and two machine guns, today went on duty at Barbourville to guard the Knox circuit court during trial of members of the Bailey family on the charge of conspiring to murder Beverly D. White of Versailes.

White was killed by John Bailey, who now is in jail at Danville, Ky., awaiting final disposition of his life sentence by the court of appeals.

Orders for the guardsmen to proceed to Barbourville were issued here. This is the third time that the militia has been called out in connection with the Bailey-White feud.

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