The Rule of Law Through Lawlessness:
Vigilante Activity in 1860s Walla Walla County
“ACCUSED BY THE HANGED”
Transcribed by Rob Spencer
Source: Territory of Washington vs. James Gibson, et. al. Walla Walla 1865, case WAL-201
Subject: Defendants are accused by victim of vigilantism.
Synopsis: An affidavit is sworn out against the defendants by Fred Schwartz who was attacked and hung by the defendants but somehow escaped death.
Territory vs. Jas. Gibson, et. al.
Filed Apr. 3rd 1865
Justice of the Peace
Filed April 18, 1865
B. (?). Sexton, Clerk
Territory of Washington}
County of Walla Walla}
In justice court before W.P. Horton, Justice
Complains against James Gibson, Samuel Waterman, George Resor, Robbins (whose Christian name is to this complainant unknown), and Wm Courtney- and alledges that heretofore to wit on the second day of April AD 1865 the said James Gibson, Samuel Waterman, George Resor, Robbins (whose Christian name is to this complainant unknown) and Wm Courtney at the county of Walla Walla and Territory of Washington did in and upon the person of this complainant make an assault and did then and there by by means of a piece of rope which said rope the said persons aforesaid did place around and upon the neck of the complainant did attempt to strangle, kill, and murder the complainant contrary to the statutes in such cases made and provided and against the lawes and dignity of the Territory of Washington.
Subscribed and sworn to before me this 3d day of April 1865
W.P. Horton-Justice of the Peace