Murder in Roanoke County: Race and Justice in the 1891 Susan Watkins Case (Paperback)
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A drama played out in the mountains of southwestern Virginia in 1891 that attracted nationwide attention and held the citizens of the Roanoke Valley spellbound. It was a story of violence, bigamy, race and a quest for justice. The tale of the trial of Charles Watkins for the murder of his wife was marked by threats of lynching, a fugitive manhunt, a disappearing witness, mistaken identities, claims of insanity and finally a secret letter to break the case wide open. In its day, the story was as closely followed as a modern televised murder trial. Despite the rapt attention of the public then, it has entirely faded from the history books--until now. Historian John Long resurrects the truth of who killed Susan Watkins. Did her rival for a man's love get away with murder?