1886 | February

At seventeen years old in 1878, Dixie Annie Jarrett married Charles Haygood in Milledgeville. Eight years later, in 1886, when Dixie was twenty-five with two children, Elias N. Sam Ennis, the brother of C.W. Ennis, shot Charles Haygood downtown on Hancock Street. Two bullets entered Haygood’s chest at point blank range on a Saturday in February, amidst a crowd. At the time, the push to ban whiskey and other spirits was at frenzy, so the community converged downtown on Saturdays to argue Prohibition for Baldwin County, which Milledgeville is the county seat. Haygood was against the consumption of whiskey. Ennis was all for it. To my knowledge, alcohol, specifically whiskey, wasn’t deemed illegal, and Baldwin never became dry. The widowed Dixie had three children to rear. She was forced to find a way to make a living, so she became something of a magician.

1886 | March

Near Sandtown just north of Milledgeville past Watson Reynolds Road at eight in the morning of March 5, 1886, a wet, muddy Frank Humphries returned home to his feverish wife and three children with one swig of whiskey remaining in the bottle he still carried. He was thirty-five. He’d gone the prior evening to his brother’s house to get his wife’s sister, Carrie Raines, because his wife was ill, and she needed her sister’s help. Because he’d had drink, Carrie Raines insisted Frank’s niece, Ella, accompany them. On the way to Frank’s home, along with Ella and Carrie, Frank Humphries reported four men disguised with masks came out of the woods and jumped him from the shadows. Frank said two men branded shotguns, and the other two men had pistols. Frank said he was hit over the head with an eel skin club then he fired his double-barreled shotgun at the men. Afterward, Frank remembered nothing. An eel skin was a popular sand-filled weapon, real and legendary at the time, which left no marks when it struck a body with force, which means no evidence. Some also believed an eel skin possessed almost magical qualities that even hours after of being struck with an eel skin, a victim’s memory could become convoluted and delayed often leaving the victim unable to recall or identify an attacker or specific details.

 

Ella, thirty-three, and Carrie, forty, disappeared according to Frank. He wrote a note to his brother that neither denied or professed his innocence but described the location where the attack took place. The dirt route from one brother’s house to the other was searched, and Ella and Carrie were found shot and beaten to the point of being unrecognizable. Pools of blood were found in the middle of the dirt road hastily covered with dirt. Ella and Carrie’s throats had been cut. Signs showed their throats were cut in the middle of the road and their bodies dragged to the woods.

1887 | August

Not far from Milledgeville in Bibb County early one morning, a rather young Thomas

G. Woolfolk, a twenty-seven year old Georgian, took an axe to the bodies of his

father, stepmother and seven other family members, including an eighteen-month-

old baby named Mattie as well as an 84-year-old aunt who was named Tempe. In all,

Thomas G. Woolfolk chopped nine of his family members to pieces.

 

Other reports say Woolfolk had a penchant for whiskey. Thomas Woolfolk left a

massacre legacy that has few rivals in American murders because he only used an

axe. To this day, it remains the worst body count of any killer who didn’t use a gun,

explosives, or a vehicle.

 

Accounts say Thomas Woolfolk wore nightclothes and socks, and his bloody sock

prints were found throughout the house amongst the blood and body parts. It later

came to light that he didn’t want his half-siblings to inherit his father’s land. Thomas

Woolfolk was hanged, and later a local vagrant named Jackson Dubose came under

suspicion, by his own admittance, as an accomplice in the Woolfolk murders.

Dubose was a black man, and, rather than being hung, Dubose was convicted of

lunacy and sent to the asylum in Milledgeville.

 

John L. Hardeman, the second cousin of Julia Force was the prosecuting attorney

who ensured that Thomas Woolfolk was hanged to death near Big Indian Creek near

 

Perry. It’s said thousands of people came to watch him hang, yet the executioner

didn’t tie the noose right. Woolfolk hung there near Big Indian Creek on the newly

whitewashed gallows for almost an hour before succumbing to death. A proper

noose placement snaps the neck immediately. Placed wrong, a person slowly chokes

to death. It’s anyone’s guess if the executioner wanted Woolfolk to think about his

deed a while longer.

1892

127 years before Marianne Shockley was found bruised, bloodied, drowned and

dead beside a hot tub, Reverend Simeon C. Leonard, the pastor of Black Springs

Church—just two miles north of Watson Reynolds Road where Marianne Shockley

died a brutal death—returned home late in the afternoon in March of 1892 to find

his sixty-year old wife Smithy Leonard laying in a pool of blood. Smithy Leonard was

still alive, but she was unconscious. She’d been hit six or seven times on the head

with an axe by an unknown trespasser, or friend. One of Smithy Leonard’s arms was

bruised from where she had tried to defend herself from the person splitting her

skull in two with an axe. Upon investigation, nothing in the Leonard house seemed

to be stolen. One day later, Smithy Leonard died having never regained

consciousness, and the murder remains unsolved. The Leonard’s nephew was the

Sheriff of Baldwin County: C.W. Ennis.

1893

On another Saturday in February of 1893, Miss Julia Force put a pistol to the

respective heads of her two sisters and killed them. A jury in Atlanta found Miss

Julia Force not guilty of calmly shooting her two older sisters (in their heads).

1889

Dixie, now, Anne rather than Annie, Haygood altered her name again to Annie

Abbott and became The Little Georgia Magnet because she was small, and a group of

men could not lift her or make her move on stage. She was a performer who could

make herself appear to be bound to the spot that she chose as if she possessed

supernatural strength. Some believed it was a hoax while others accused her of

witchcraft. Some said Dixie’s work was the work of the occult. Her performances

were seen across the country and across Europe. She performed for dignitaries and

heads of state such as Kaiser Wilhelm II, Emperor Franz Joseph, and Tsar Alexander

III.

1889

Dixie, now, Anne rather than Annie, Haygood altered her name again to Annie

Abbott and became The Little Georgia Magnet because she was small, and a group of

men could not lift her or make her move on stage. She was a performer who could

make herself appear to be bound to the spot that she chose as if she possessed

supernatural strength. Some believed it was a hoax while others accused her of

witchcraft. Some said Dixie’s work was the work of the occult. Her performances

were seen across the country and across Europe. She performed for dignitaries and

heads of state such as Kaiser Wilhelm II, Emperor Franz Joseph, and Tsar Alexander

III.

1889

Dixie, now, Anne rather than Annie, Haygood altered her name again to Annie

Abbott and became The Little Georgia Magnet because she was small, and a group of

men could not lift her or make her move on stage. She was a performer who could

make herself appear to be bound to the spot that she chose as if she possessed

supernatural strength. Some believed it was a hoax while others accused her of

witchcraft. Some said Dixie’s work was the work of the occult. Her performances

were seen across the country and across Europe. She performed for dignitaries and

heads of state such as Kaiser Wilhelm II, Emperor Franz Joseph, and Tsar Alexander

III.

1889

Dixie, now, Anne rather than Annie, Haygood altered her name again to Annie

Abbott and became The Little Georgia Magnet because she was small, and a group of

men could not lift her or make her move on stage. She was a performer who could

make herself appear to be bound to the spot that she chose as if she possessed

supernatural strength. Some believed it was a hoax while others accused her of

witchcraft. Some said Dixie’s work was the work of the occult. Her performances

were seen across the country and across Europe. She performed for dignitaries and

heads of state such as Kaiser Wilhelm II, Emperor Franz Joseph, and Tsar Alexander

III.

1889

Dixie, now, Anne rather than Annie, Haygood altered her name again to Annie

Abbott and became The Little Georgia Magnet because she was small, and a group of

men could not lift her or make her move on stage. She was a performer who could

make herself appear to be bound to the spot that she chose as if she possessed

supernatural strength. Some believed it was a hoax while others accused her of

witchcraft. Some said Dixie’s work was the work of the occult. Her performances

were seen across the country and across Europe. She performed for dignitaries and

heads of state such as Kaiser Wilhelm II, Emperor Franz Joseph, and Tsar Alexander

III.

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