Friday, October 17, 2008

This Week in Texas Methodist History October 19

W, G. Veal Murdered by Angry Husband, Ocrober 25, 1892

Last week’s post recounted the passing of a prominent Methodist preacher who lived an honorable life and died with the universal respect of Texas Methodists. This week’s post tells another story. W. G. Veal, prominent supporter of Southwestern University, ex-Confederate officer, and independently wealthy minister, was murdered while attending the Texas State Fair at Dallas. The murderer was the husband of a woman Veal had seduced some ten years earlier. Here is how the New York Times (Oct. 26,1892) covered the story

Killed His Wife’s Betrayer

Dr. H. Jones, without a word of warning, shot W. G. Vial (sic)1

Dallas, Texas, Oct. 25.—Dr. H. Jones, a prominent physician, to-day shot and killed W. G. Vial at Ex-Confederate Headquarters2. This is Confederate Day of the Texas Fair. A great crowd, including Gens. Reagan, Ross, Harriet, and Mrs. Hayes, daughter of Jefferson Davis, were present. Capt. Vial was in a room at the Confederate Headquarters2 writing at a table at 9:30 o’clock, when Dr. Jones appeared and without a word of warning shot Vial in the right temple, killing him instantly. Vial’s head fell over on the table, and so presented a sad sight to his fellow-ex-Confederates. Jones was arrested and placed in jail.

Two years ago Vial was a prominent Methodist preacher at Waxahutchie (sic), and was afterwards expelled from the Church and ministry and also from the Masonic order for immoral conduct and efforts to seduce a young woman he had just baptized. Since then he had been a real estate and railroad boomer at Fort Worth and Dallas.

Jones is an Alabamian. He said he killed Vial because of his wife. It is reported that Jones this morning charged Vial with having seduced his wife some time ago.

Jones was tried, found guilty and sentenced to prison. He appealed successfully and died awaiting a new trial.

1Veal’s name is spelled incorrectly every time it is used.
2At the corner of Commerce and Lamar.


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