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The Moonshine Battle

submitted by William G. Prather

The Gordon County GAGenWeb Project



VOL. XVII, Page 7, Columns 3


The Jury of Inquest Says That the Revenue Men Were Justifiable.

Yesterday Postmaster Wilson received a telegram from Gainesville stating that the coroner's jury in the matter of the revenue killing, had returned a verdict that the killing was justifiable.

The Gainesville Southern has the following account of the preparation for the inquest which ended yesterday:

In another column of this paper will be found an account of the "midnight battle" between the United States revenue officers and moonshiners of the upper end of this county, on last Tuesday night, as reported in THE ATLANTA CONSTITUTION of Thursday, and which is substantially correct. On Wednesday evening, about fifty of our citizens went out to the scene of the battle, accompanied by Coroner Bagwell. They found a large crowd of excited people of the neighborhood upon the ground, where laid the dead bodies of Anderson Grant and Josiah Prater. Everything being in confusion the coroner concluded to adjourn the inquest to Gainesville on Thursday. Accordingly, at 10 o'clock on that day, the following jury was sworn:  W. M. Robertson, T. L. Robertson, Frank Watson, J. A. Elliott, J. H. Latham, G. E. Reeves, J. E. Blackstock, A. B. C. Dorsey, Z. T. Bird, W. S. Cox and W. M. Pinson. A. B. C. Dorsey chosen foreman. After several days' work on the inquest it has been determined to go back and do the work all over, keeping the witnesses separate. This will require at least another week; therefore we cannot with propriety say much about the matter in this issue.

Last night THE CONSTITUTION received the following special:

GAINESVILLE, Ga., December 24. ---(Special.)--- After six days' investigation the coroner's jury in the inquest over the bodies of J. A. Grant and Josiah Prater returned a verdict this evening find that the killing of the men by revenue officers justifiable.

Additional Comments:

James Anderson GRANT was the son of William B. and Elizabeth (SMITH) GRANT. They were married in Hall County, Georgia on the 2nd of May 1837.  Both had died before the event of this killing.  Josiah PRATER was the son of Josiah and Mary Jane (SHOOPMAN) PRATER. They were married on the 15th of February 1852 near Resaca, Gordon County, Georgia. Josiah PRATER Sr. was killed in action on the 22nd of July 1864 near Atlanta, Georgia, a victim of the Civil War. Mary Jane PRATER died on the 28th of January 1918 and is buried in Cool Springs Baptist Church cemetery.

File contributed for use in USGenWeb Archives by:

William G. Prather October 8, 2004, 12:20 am

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