Noah Hezekiah Burns

Noah Hezekiah Burns

Macon County, North Carolina, USA
Death 15 Feb 1874 (aged 33)
Swain County, North Carolina, USA
Burial Bryson City, Swain County, North Carolina, USA
Plot Burns
Memorial ID 5804313 · View Source
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Son of Uriah Charles Burns and Sarah Louise Burchfield.
Husband of 1st: Mary Angeline Cline; 2nd: Elizabeth Weeks, not married.

Noah Hezekiah H Burns was the son of Uriah Charles Burns and Sarah Louise Burchfield.

He enlisted in the Civil War on 27 Apr 1861 in Jackson Co, NC and was assigned as a Private in Co A, 16th NC Infantry Regiment.

He was mustered out of service on 30 Nov 1862 and immediately transferred to Co K, 39th NC Infantry Regiment.

Later, on 31 Oct 1863 he was promoted to Full Sergeant.

Noah would finally be mustered out of service on 04 May 1865 in Citronelle, Alabama. He survived the war ...

After his return home from the Civil War in 1865, Noah would marry Mary Angeline (Cline) Burns, daughter of Absolum B. Cline and Rhoda Kirkland ca. 1869 in Jackson County. To this union, one child would be born, Mary C. Burns in 1872 in the newly formed Swain County.

Noah became a Deputy US Marshall serving during the Moonshine Wars (1872-1913). Following is a quote from the Springfield, Missouri, Advertiser, May 1876 which indicates that "Of all the duties in this country, that of U.S. Marshal is the most dangerous and onerous. The people of the neighboring counties seem to have the idea that the chief use of any officer of the law is to afford a target for their rifles and pistols, and we too well know how many United States Officers have fallen victims to duty."

He worked very hard to bring an end to the illicit moonshining in Swain and surrounding counties and bring those who were charged to face justice. In February 1874 Noah, along with Mr. W.P. Allman, left Swain County on their journey to Cheoah, located in neighboring Graham County, to serve warrants and then return to Swain County where they would complete the task at hand.

While at an illicit distillery home in Cheoah, they were found inside and was surrounded by an angry mob of distillers where the two men were forced to remain overnight. It wasn't until such time as a local Indian man approached the home to obtain whiskey, that Noah and Mr. Allman were able to seek their freedom after a bit of "negotiating" skills with the Indians, whom Noah knew personally.

After being freed, Noah would then hide Mr. Allman in Cheoah and returned to Swain County where he had left some important legal documents at his home which he needed.

On Sunday the 15th, Noah was returning to Cheoah, traveling along the Tennessee River approximately 15-miles west of Bryson City, when he was shot through the heart and killed instantly by William R. Dills. He was killed at such close range, the patching of the bullet was lodge in the wound where the ball penetrated his body. Dills was accompanied by two other men (Walls and Freeman).

Dills was arrested and placed in jail at Webster, located in Jackson County, under close confinement.

Noah left behind his wife, Mary Angeline (Cline) Burns, and daughter Mary C. Burns.

He was 33-years of age.


Beating of Mrs. Angeline Burns
11 Nov 1874, The Daily Journal, Wilmington, NC

On Monday night of last week three men entered the dwelling of Mrs. Angeline Burns dragging her out of bed and whipped her unmercifully with hickory withes. She begged the men to killed her, but spare the life of her daughter, Mary C. Burns, and care for her.

She recognized two of the men, Samuel Taylor Burns and Uriah McBride "M.M." Burns, her brother-in-laws and a third man she believed to be Mr. Robinson, whom was also a brother-in-law.

The men were arrested the following morning, being brought before W.T. Battle, Magistrate under a $200 Bond.

The Burns brothers coveted and wanted her off the land she now occupied. This land, in which she possessed a marital interest, had belonged to her late husband and prior to that, to his father, Uriah Charles Burns.

Of Note: Within five months, following the brutal ordeal with her in-laws, Angeline would remarry on 18 Apr 1875 to Abraham "Abram" Wiggins, son of James Holland and Mary Elvira "Polly" (Sherrill) Wiggins, in Swain County. After their marriage, her daughter, Mary C Burns, born 1872, would assume the surname of and was raised by her step father.


Acquitted in the Murder of Hezekiah H.H. Burns
02 May 1875, Wilmington Morning Star

William R. Dills was acquitted in the North Carolina State Court of charges for the brutal murder of U.S. Deputy Marshall Hezekiah H.H. Burns but, would serve a one year sentence in Albany Penitentiary after he pled guilty of armed conspiracy to obstruct the course of justice.

Bio by: Bill Grimm

Gravesite Details Killed in Va. in the Civil War. Husband of Mary Angeline (Cline) Burns


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  • Created by: jean thomas
  • Added: 26 Sep 2001
  • Find a Grave Memorial 5804313
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Noah Hezekiah Burns (20 Jul 1840–15 Feb 1874), Find a Grave Memorial no. 5804313, citing Burns Cemetery, Bryson City, Swain County, North Carolina, USA ; Maintained by jean thomas (contributor 46502106) .