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A Proclamation

Whereas, In January or February, 1869, the house of Daniel Blue, colored, in the country of Moore, was entered at night by a band of disguised men, known as the Ku Klux Klan, and the wife of the said Blue, who was pregnant, and five of the children were murdered, and the house with the bodies of the murdered persons aforesaid was burned:

And Whereas, on the 26th of February, 1870, Wyatt Outlaw, colored, a citizen of Alamance, was taken from his house in the town of Graham by a band of disguised persons known as the Ku Klux Klan, and hanged by the neck until he was dead, on a tree near the Court House;

And Whereas, on Saturday the 21st day of May, 1870, John W. Stephens, white, State Senator from the country of Caswell, was murdered in open day-light in the Court House in the village of Yanceyville, by persons unknown, supposed to belong to Ku Klux Klan aforesaid;

And Whereas, on the 13th of May, 1870, Robin Jacobs, colored, living near Leasburg, Caswell County, was murdered at night by a band of the Ku Klux Klan aforesaid:

And Whereas, from the 2d of April, 1870, to the 15th of May 1870, not less than twenty-one persons, white and colored, in the aforesaid County of Caswell, were cruelly whipped and scouraged by a band or bands of the aforesaid Ku Klux Klan:

And whereas, during the week ending the 14th of May, 1870, a colored man in the county of Lincoln was taken his bed at night and tied to a tree by a band of disguised persons known as the Ku Klux Klan, while fifteen of these demons in succession committed a rape on his wife:

And Whereas, about the same time, in said County, a band of these men disguised, known as the Ku Klux Klan, met a colored woman in the dusk of the evening and committed a rape on her body, and afterwards stuck their knives in various parts of her body:

And Whereas, about the same time a band of men, disguised, known as the Ku Klux Klan, in said County, shot a colored man on the public highway, and then told him they had shot him through mistake for another colored man, but laid him on a pile of fence rails and told him to cry for help:

And Whereas, recently, a colored man named Puryear, of the county Alamance, supposed to be half-witted, having followed two of the disguised murderers of Wyatt Outlaw to their homes, and having spoken of the fact publicly, suddenly disappeared, and was found drowned in a mill pond, with a twenty pound rock to his feet: 

And Whereas, T.M. Shoffner, one of the Senators in the General Assembly of this State, from the Counties of Alamance and Guilford, has been compelled to sacrifice his property, and, to save his life, to make his escape from said County on account of his opposition to the Ku Klux Klan aforesaid, and his devotion to the government of the United States:

And Whereas, on the 25th of May, 1870, a most attrocious murder was committed by three disguised men on Neill McLeod and Daniel McLeod, white, of the county of Cumberland, and three others of the family were wounded by these assassins: 

And Whereas, in other divers other localities peaceable citizens have been insulted in their houses, put in fear for their lives, whipped, scouraged, maltreated, mutilated and murdered by persons disguised, and known as the Ku Klux Klan:

And Whereas, retaliation has commenced by the burning of barns, stables, and mills:

And Whereas, all these evils are to be traced to the Ku Klux Klan aforesaid, though no apology can be offered for the retaliation referred to, for it is equally to be deplored and reprobated as a wicked violation of the law; and upon due information laid before me, (which information has not been furnished,) that barns, or stables, or mills, or dwelling houses, have been burned by incendiaries, mentioning the localities and the persons to whom the said barns, or stables, or mills, or dwelling houses belonged, rewards will also be offered for the arrest and conviction of the incendiaries aforesaid:

Now Therefore, I, William W. Holden Governor of the State of North Carolina, do issue this my proclamation, offering a reward of Five Hundred Dollars for the arrest of each of the murderers of the wife and children of Daniel Blue, each of the murderers of Wyatt Outlaw, of each of the murderers of John W. Stephens, of each of the murders of Robin Jacobs, of each of the persons who committed rapes on the bodies of the colored women referred to, of each of the persons who murdered Puryear, and of each of the persons who murdered Neill McLeod and Daniel McLeod, and robbed the family of the said Neill McLeod, together with such evidence as will lead to the conviction of the persons thus arrested; those who planned, advised or counselled the commission of the act; those who participated in the act or acts; or those who conspired to conceal the bodies of the murdered, or aided in the concealment and escape of the felons:

And I enjoin upon all officers, civil and military, to aid in bringing these and all other offenders to justice; and especially to discountenance, discourage, and repress all organizations of men who ride or walk at night in disguise, with arms in their hands. It is a misdemeanor thus to go out disguised, and it is a felony if these disguised persons molest or injure peaceable citizens in their persons or property.

Done at our city of Raleigh, this 6th day of June, A.D.,1870, and in the Ninety fourth year of our Independence.

W. W. Holden,


By The Governor:

W. R. Richardson,

Private Secretary.