|Birth: ||Jun. 12, 1896|
|Death: ||Nov. 3, 1950|
The death of his father forced John Wallace to become a man at the age of eleven. He tried so hard but there was only so much that a boy of that age and time could do. He and his mother eventually moved back home to Meriwether County, GA where his grandparents still lived.
From that point on, he was raised a Strickland. He got into the moonshine business for a while to get his hands on some ready cash, as many men did back then. He bought land and cattle with the money. He became a dairy farmer.
In 1948 a cow rustling gang originating out of Carroll County formed but one of the men belonging to this gang used to be a sharecropper on Wallace's farm. He remembered the expensive cows that Wallace owned. the gang decided to steal some of Wallace's cows. This was a fatal mistake for William, aka Wilson Turner.
Turner was caught and arrested in Carroll County and transported back to Meriwether. The local officials for reasons unknown decided they didn't have enough evidence to prosecute Turner. They turned him loose. Wallace had gone to the jail to intergate Turner before the local officials turned him free. When he got there he discovered that Turner had already been released. Turner was spotted at a local gas station. A chase occurred. Wallace and one of his friends, caught up with Turner in Coweta county and brought him back to Meriwether. Wallace having the idea to take Turner back to where the crime had been committed in an effort to get Turner to tell him where his other stolen cows where. (Many law enforcement of that time frame did the same thing with their prisoners.)
But this is where things went wrong for Wallace and Turner. Wallace being exhausted from staying up night and day for five consecutive days while he helped the Carroll County chief of police 'case out' the location of one of his stolen cows. Wallace states he had a shot gun in his hand, an item that was not uncommon for dairy farmers to carry around with them during this time frame, anyway, he heard a noise to his left, he turned, the gun dropped into the curve of his right elbow and went off. When he turned back around the top of Turner's head had been blown off. Wallace went into shock at what he had down, he couldn't remember for a long time after that what followed.
Eventually he did remember but he had long since been sentenced to the electric chair for the murder of Turner. He fought for his life for two years trying to get authorities to listen to the truth but to no avail. He was convicted of murder in 1948 based on manufactured evidence and was electrocuted in 1950. He proclaimed that Turner's death was an accident with his dying breath.
After reading the court trial and with the assurance of cremation experts that there is no way to burn a body to ashes overnight with a load of fresh cut pinewood and gasoline. The fire would not stay hot enough, long enough for cremation. I do not find any reason for not believing that Turner's death was anything more than a terrible accident. Manslaughter but not murder.
John Wallace is not famous except in a little county in Georgia where his death seems to still be making Coweta county money.
Thomas Welsey Wallace (1864 - 1907)
Myrtie Strickland Wallace (1865 - 1941)
Josephine Leath Wallace (1912 - 2005)
John Walton Wallace (1896 - 1950)
Louie Wallace (1904 - 1904)*
I kept the pleasant memory
Just rest in peace
Created by: Ivey
Record added: Feb 05, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 65250831