On October 3, 1908 a black man named David Walker became involved in a dispute with a white woman, what the dispute was about is unknown till this day. It was said that David did swore at the white woman and upset her. The night of October 3, 1908 the Night Riders paid a visit to the Walker’s farm surrounding his cabin and ordering David Walker out, when David refused the Night Riders saturated his farm with coal oil and lit it aflame. David then pleaded with the Night Riders to spare his family and when David opened the door and stepped out he was riddled with bullets. David Walker’s wife came out holding their infant son and pleading with the Night Riders for mercy, but she too along with her infant son was gunned down. When the Walker’s three youngest children saw their mother laying in her blood they came out screaming for their mother and they too shared the same fate. The Walker’s eldest son refused to leave the cabin and he was burned alive inside the Cabin.
The Fulton County Night Riders justified their murders by declaring Walker had a bad reputation and was a ” Surly Negro” due to him swearing at a white woman.
The Governor of Kentucky Reaction
Augustus E. Willson denounced the Night Riders for the lynching of David Walker and his family in Hickman. Willson said, “If two or three men had gone to this poor cabin and murdered this family, the crime would have shocked humanity with its revelation of incredible weakness, brutality and dastardly cowardice. That a larger number—some fifty men—joined in such a crime, multiplies it’s cowardliness and wickedness fiftyfold, and makes every member of the band guilty of murder in the first degree.” Willson took the Lynching of the Walker Family as “an outgrowth and the logical results of the toleration of night rider crimes in the state. It is only one step removed from Civil War.” Augustus offered a five hundred dollar reward for the arrest and conviction of any Night Rider who participated in the Walker family lynching. Willson also urged law-abiding citizens to defend themselves, promising a Governor’s pardon to anyone who shot and killed a Night Rider.
David Walker, his wife , and their 5 children perished at the hands of the Night Rider’s on the night of October 3, 1908.
Nobody was prosecuted for this crime.