Person:John Wilson (16)

John Henry WILSON
b.Bet 23 Sep 1861 and 1864 Texas ??, Missouri?
d.17 Dec 1927 Shreveport, Louisiana
  • HJohn Henry WILSONBet 1861 & 1864 - 1927
  • WMartha BENTHALL1867 - 1935
m. 8 Aug 1889
  1. Johnny WILSONAbt 1890 - Bef 1900
  2. _____ Wilson, (1)Bet 1890 & 1897 - Bef 1900
  3. _____ Wilson, (2)Bet 1890 & 1898 - Bef 1900
  4. _____ Wilson, (3)Bet 1890 & 1898 - Bef 1900
  5. Nora (Zanora) WILSON1898 - 1975
  6. Sadie Wilson1898 - 1989
  7. Sybil WILSON1903 - 1945
  8. Julian WILSON1905 - 1971
Facts and Events
Name[1][2] John Henry WILSON
Gender Male
Birth[3][4][5][6][10] Bet 23 Sep 1861 and 1864 Texas ??, Missouri?
Marriage 8 Aug 1889 Arkansas Co., ARto Martha BENTHALL
Death[7][8][9] 17 Dec 1927 Shreveport, Louisiana
Burial? Whitehall Cemetery, Claiborne Parish, LA

The following notes were written by J. M. Henderson, Jr. , Atty in Dewitt, AR, in 1964 who was a decendant of the Rust family.He remembered Martha and John H. Wilson very well.

"After Underwood and Sarah Jane Benthal were married, they divided the Old Benthal Homestead and your grandmother took the north end of the farm and Sarah kept the old Benthal home.Wilson built a house there and they lived there several years.Then Wilson bought a good tract of land four miles north on the prairie, built a good house, and other improvements but got in with a high tempered fellow named John Kemp and they went to the bottom in the log business. After working there some time, came home, got to White River Chute, both drinking, pulled off theirshoes. waded the chute, went up the bank to a fisherman's tent.Men were not at home, got into trouble with the women, took a water bucket off a shelf, washed their feet in it, and finally went on their way. The fishermen came home, their wives told them of the trouble. They went to St. Charles and had warrents issued for Wilson and Kemp.That night a crowd went down to the fishermen's tent to run them off . About the midnight hour they arrived before the tent, one of the fishermen saw Kemp near the flap of is tent with a gun, he shot a hole through him with aload of slugs. His companions (about a half a dozen in number)fired 24 shots into the tent, killing a woman, wounding a girl,and breaking a man's leg, shooting a load of shot into a 10 yearold boy's hip. Kemp was carried to home of his daughter nearby, died at ten o'clock next day. The little boy died two days later. One survivor still lives here in DeWitt, AR.

Wilson and a boy whom he had hired were charged with murder. A year of trials followed. The boy soon acquitted, Wilson came clear after about a year. It broke him. He and Mat had threefine children, They were stricken with typhoid fever and died. He put up a little store on the edge of the prairie 4 miles east of here, ran a Post Office there for a while. Finally sold out and left here.

I remember him very well. He was a fine looking man, light complected, brown hair, and blue eyes is my recollection. I know nothing of his background."

NOTE: There are some corrections that need to be made about this story. I wrote to the clerk of court and she gave me the index for the arrest.

"Reference: Ark, Co., DeWitt, AR

16 Nov. 1895 - no.821 State of Ark vs. John Wilson - True BillIndictment for murder 1st degree- Lilly Harlin by shooting withgun on 9th day of June 1895

16 Nov. 1895 - no.8VV- State of Ark vs. John Wilson Indictmentfor murder 1st degree Jack Tankersley with gun on 9 June 1895."

Witnesses were Mrs. Lula Thompson, Marion Thompson, Marion Harlin, Alma Tankersly, Rosa Kemp, Wm. W. Moore, George Cunningham, Charles Marshall, George, W. Rogers, L.H. Winkler,Mrs. Price, George McIerawin(sp?) , and S. Vent(sp?)

Reference Ark Co, , DeWitt, Ark

Criminal Record A: 78,87, 103, 104, 123

5 April, 1897- Case #821&822- State of Ark through attorney George M. Chaplin enters a Nolle prosequi. both cases and defendant released.

" For whatever reason, the state chose not to prosecute and Wilson released in 5 April 1897."

My grandmother, Sadie, said that her father changed his name because he road with Jesse James one time and only held the horses. The law was looking for him and he changed his last name to Wilson which was his brothers first name. She said he was related in some way to Jesse James mother. I have never been able to find a connection.

He led a quiet and uneventful life after prison and had four children and two of them were twins born exactly 9 months after he was released.

According to the 1900 Arkansas Co., census his Father was born in TX and Mother was born in Georgia. He was born in TX

  1. Jerry Gallagher, Research.
  2. 1910 Refugio County, Texas.
  3. 1900 Arkansas County, Arkansas Census.
  4. 1910 Refugio County, Texas.
  5. 1920 Claiborne Parish, LA census.
  6. Death Certificate, Louisiana.
  7. Jerry Gallagher, Research.
  8. 1900 Arkansas County, Arkansas Census.
  9. Death Certificate, Louisiana.
  10. Per AR co. Cencus 1900