Tag Archives: Deaths

Major Pryor born about 1789: VA, SC and Savannah, Georgia

Major Pryor
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Death of William Pryor b. 1864

The report of the death of a William Pryor from Virginia, son of Captain Pryor, in 1889:

Wm Pryor a young man 25 years of age committed suicide yesterday by taking morphine. He was on a Western North Carolina train, and between Ashville and Hickory he swallowed 40 quarter grains he took the drug had no labels on it and it was not until the young man had fairly loaded himself that attention was attracted to him. A passenger saw him dump the whole contents of the box into his mouth and throw the empty box to the floor. Shortly afterwards he began to show the effects of the drug, and his tongue became so swollen that it bulged from between his lips. He was put off at Hickory and medical attention was summoned, but his death quickly ensued. The unfortunate young man was a son of Capt. Pryor who was formerly road master of the Richmond & Danville Company at Charlotte.
The Daily Review (Wilmington, NC – 20 May 1889)

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More on The Murder of Beverly Pryor

I obtained a copy of the article on the racetrack death of Beverly Pryor which was published 17 May 1836 in The Democrat (Huntsville). It doesn’t add anything to ID this Pryor (see earlier post), however there is an extra paragraph of commentary– Almost 180 years ago “gun control” had entered the dialog in the US.

Comment upon this melancholy rencoutre is not, we presume, called for from us. One remark, however, we cannot refrain from making. The practice which is becoming so common, of carrying pistols and knives, cannot be too much condemned. If public sentiment does not restrain the strong arm of the law ought to be brought in to put it down.

History is interesting. It’s interesting that the commentary was run in the Alabama paper and by the time the story had made it’s way to the Gettysburg, PA newspaper, the commentary was discarded. I don’t know the history of the time so I don’t know if there was a difference of sentiment in the North vs the South (it was 25 years before the Civil War). Or did the PA paper have limited space and they cut the only paragraph that didn’t give details of the murder?

While this may be something for historians to ponder, genealogy researchers should always look for the difference in news articles… one paper may print a more complete article while another many carry an edited version.  Read each article…. you never know what you may be missing.

1930 Pryor Murder in Morgan County, IN

26 September 1930 a report in The Indianapolis News reported the investigation of the suspicious death of Carrie Thelma Pryor of Martinsville. Her husband, who had taken out a $3000 life insurance policy on her life was being questioned after arsenic was discovered in her system.

The Pryors appear on the 1930 Census in Martinsville
Ernest T. Pryor 31 born in IN, both parents born in IN, Thelma 21 born in IL, son Francis 2 10/12, and cousin Elsie Hamm age 25. The news account reported that Elsie was Thelma’s first cousin.

What happened to Earnest? What happened to young Francis?  I didn’t find them on the 1940 Census. The same newspaper reported on October 2nd that Earnest Pryor made a full confession and plead guilty.

Perhaps this will help someone find some Pryors missing from their family tree.

Category: Indiana Pryors | Tags: ,

Notice of the Estate Auction of Capt. Samuel Pryor


To be SOLD at public auction, at the Butterwood Spring, in Dinwiddie county, on the first day of January next, About FOURTEEN very likely NEGROES, Part of which for ready money, the other part one year’s credit will be allowed the purchasers, giving bond and security. Also the whole flock of horses, cattle, and hogs, with the corn and fodder, working tools, etc. The whole is the estate of Capt. Samuel Pryor, deceased.
WILLIAM PRYOR, administrator.
All those indebted to the estate are desired to make immediate payment. They will have no father notice.
[Rind’s Virginia Gazette, (Williamsburg, VA), 23 Nov. 1769 , p. 4]