Lynching redux

George Thompson george.thompson at NYU.EDU
Mon Aug 8 17:10:32 UTC 2005

----- Original Message -----
From: Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM>
Date: Friday, August 5, 2005 5:29 pm
Subject: Re: Lynching redux

> OED believes that an origin in reference Capt. W. Lynch has been
> "clearly establish[ed]."  His extrajudicial tribunal was evidently
> set up in Virginia in 1780.
> JL

About 60 years ago there was an index printed to the Virginia Gazette.
I don't see anything in this index under the name Lynch that seems to
refer to this.  There is an entry "Lynching, in Cork, Ire" but the
word "lynching" was supplied by the indexer.  The story dealt with the
killing of an informer by a mob; the word "lynching' did not appear.
Virginia Gazette, January 26, 1769, p. 2, col. 1, the 2nd story from
the top.

I also looed at the full text of the Pennsylvania Gazette from the
early 1760s through 1800 (on CD-Rom from Accessible Archives).  It
didn't didn't show "lynching" and all references to "lynch" seemed to
be to people of that name.


George A. Thompson
Author of A Documentary History of "The African Theatre", Northwestern
Univ. Pr., 1998, but nothing much lately.

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