The Gingery Mob – Who Was the Accomplice?

9 May

About a year or so ago I wrote about an event known as The Gingery Mob in which the Gingery brothers, Henry and Roger, killed a police officer and his helper because their brother Reuben was arrested for failing to be vaccinated. Henry and Roger escaped, but their brothers Reuben and Frank were killed for their crimes. In addition to this a man from Henning identified as a neighbor of the Gingery’s was also killed for being an accessory to the crime.

Just who was the accomplice from Henning?

Sometimes the answer we are looking for is right under our nose and in this case it was. I have a list of the lynchings that occurred in the West Tennessee area, of course the listing is incomplete, but it didn’t occur to me until now to check that list and see who was hung around the time of the Gingery Mob. Wouldn’t you know it? My answer was on that list.

Anderson Gause was lynched January 16, 1900 just 7 days after the Gingery brothers. Could he be the accomplice?

I went a little further to substantiate my idea and I discovered newspaper articles linking Anderson Gause to the crime. According to the papers

“Anderson Gause colored was lynched by a mob near HENNING Tenn for aiding two murderers to escape”

With my idea corroborated by published news accounts I figured that this was my guy the accomplice, but just who was Anderson Gause?

Ordinarily you would think that tracking down someone named Anderson Gause would not be that complicated, but there were a lot of people with the last name Gause in Lauderdale County at this time, Black and White. United States Census Records did not provide the best information because several people just listed themselves on the census as “A. Gause”. I then decided to check the Tennessee State Marriage records, but in those records I also found a lot of people named “A. Gause” listed. So then I decided to check to see if there was an A. Gause listed in Bethlehem Cemetery, Canaan Cemetery, or Canfield  2 places he possibly would have been buried since he was killed in Henning. I turned up no records on Find A Grave and of course no Tennessee State Death records because he died before death records became mandatory.

Just who was Anderson Gause? How did he help the Gingery brothers escape? Did he help them get onto a train? Take them by wagon to another city? Give them his horses? Did he even help them or was he just at the wrong place, at the wrong time while the community was looking to kill anyone who might have remotely had anything to do with the Gingery brothers? Who knows for sure, but as always I will be sure to share more information as it becomes available.

Anderson Gause Jan 20, 1900 - The Clifton Advocate

Anderson Gause Jan 20, 1900 – The Clifton Advocate

– Tiffany

– Sources: The Lynching Calendar:, The Clifton, Illinois Advocate Jan 20, 1900 edition

– Tiffany

Sources: 1880 US Census, State of Tennessee Marriage Records for Lauderdale County, Lauderdale County Enterprise Friday, September 24, 1926 edition


5 Responses to “The Gingery Mob – Who Was the Accomplice?”

  1. Jennifer Dunn May 16, 2013 at 6:04 pm #

    I spent a whole semester researching lynching, but it never stops being shocking to see news of lynchings in newspapers. I also clicked over to your list and the 3rd lynching on there (after the two in Ripley in 1900) was from West Springs, SC where my West ancestors come from. All that’s a little too close to home for me.

    On a brighter note, good for you for following your instincts and solving an old mystery!

    • Tiffany May 17, 2013 at 9:19 am #

      Thanks for commenting. Originally I had written this post to say I couldn’t find the accomplice and had to rewrite it once I paid full attention to all of my resources! The interesting part about lynchings is that I often wonder what the family of the lynched person was doing when all of that was happening. Were they fearful? Were they hiding? Lynchings could be quite the “spectacle” and I always wondered how families handled people rejoicing over the death of a loved one who possibly could have been innocent.

      • Jennifer Dunn May 17, 2013 at 10:20 am #

        Such a valid question. I did this research years ago in college but I remember reading that lynching were a big impetus for mass migration, either to the North or just out of the area. For example, there was a lynching the next county over from where I was born (Forsyth County, Georgia) and the demographics are stunning. There were a little over 1,000 African-Americans in the county in 1910 (about 9% of the population), the lynching occurred in 1912 and there were 30 African-Americans in the county in 1920 (.026% of the population). THIRTY. Less than ONE percent.

        The area definitely became a sundown town and they even had that nasty run in where Hosea Williams and Oprah marched on the town back in 1987 because it was still such an unfriendly place for African-Americans. The fricking KKK showed up. In 1987. It’s always been kind of a shameful place to live next door, too, but thankfully after all that negative attention and North Georgia’s big population growth boom that area has become much more integrated.


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