Campbell-Little Murder - 1873 - Montgomery InGenWeb Project

Go to content

Campbell-Little Murder - 1873

Source: Crawfordsville Weekly Journal 21 August 1873 p 2

“Alamo News” - The Campbell-Little murder overshadows all other matters. The excitement is intense, and the feeling against Campbell is exceedingly bitter. As the whole case will no doubt undergo a searching and impartial legal investigation and as I can give nothing but a near-say account of the affair, I will say nothing further of the melancholy tragedy; and yet I can not refrain from lifting a warning voice to the young against the use of intoxicating liquors. 25 years ago John Campbell then 8 or 9 years of age was a schoolmate of mine and he was the brightest, smartest and most manly little fellow I ever saw although my experience of nearly 20 years as a teacher has brought me in contact with a great many very smart boys. His natural endowments, with proper cultivation would have fitted him to grace any position in society, either public or private but strong drink and his unrestrained, bad temper have wrought his ruin: “his bright prospects are wasted, and his sun is set never to rise.” And the man who sold him the whisky!  What shall I say of him? If he has a conscience I would show him the murder’s stricken wife and heartbroken mother, and also the desolated hearthstone of his hapless victim; and I would ask him in the name of God, if at the sight of these he feels no compunction.

Source: Crawfordsville Daily Journal Wednesday, 5 August 1891
Since John Campbell was sent to prison for life 17 years ago for killing John Little, both he and his friends have been looking forward to the day when a pardon should be procured. An unsuccessful effort was made two years ago and now another petition is being circulated by the convict’s friends. A systematic work is going on and all societies, classes and organizations are to be represented as such on the petition. All the jurymen except one have signed, most of the court officers, and numerous others connected with the trial have also signed. It is said that the petition will be presented to President Harrison who conducted the prosecution of Campbell. The other night the petition was presented to both the Good Templar lodges in this city and they signed. As he committed the deed while drunk, his friends are pleased to have the temperance societies working in his interest. Miss Edna Campbell, the sister of John Campbell has the matter in charge and feels confident of securing her brother’s pardon. His health is breaking rapidly and his family greatly desires to have him pass his last days in the air of freedom. Hon. M. D. White, who assisted Senator Vorhees in the defense, states that the pardon should be granted by all means. “For the last seven years,” said he, “John Campbell has been serving sentence unjustly. Ten years would have been sufficiently severe for his crime, which was nothing but manslaughter, at the worst.”

Back to content