Over the years people driving along Highway 15 just a few miles north of New Albany have driven by this white picket fence without realizing what it represents. Apparently, around the turn of the century, a chain gang was working along the railroad tracks seen in the background. At the time, the present highway didn't exist, the area was only farmland. Perhaps the crew had been clearing the weeds and brush alongside of the tracks on a hot, sticky Mississippi summer day. At any rate, one of the convicts evidently couldn't take it any longer. He made the mistake of trying to escape, and was shot dead by a guard. They buried him on the spot. Justice was swift in those days... As far as I can tell, his name has been lost to history.
I've often wondered who built the fence...perhaps they could fill in some blanks on this tragic story.
© 2002, by Melissa McCoy-Bell. All rights reserved.