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Henry Berry Lowrie, the Native American "Robin Hood," in Civil War North Carolina
1864 - Archive, 1864-1872. Eight documents relating to the Lowrie (also spelled Lowry) Gang, a group of outlaw men and women who resisted the Confederate Home Guard. Based in Robeson County, North Carolina, they lived off of the land and the succor of sympathetic neighbors, and defied local and state authorities. The first item, printed on Confederate necessity paper, appears to provide evidence on the origins of the dispute which began the "Lowry War." The second item is a warrant for Lowrie's arrest, and with its struck word, "Confederate," shows the transition back to U.S. sovereignty in North Carolina. Several documents pertain to the trial of Thomas Brady, accused of murdering a local supporter of Lowry. .01 "Seely Dial, Allen Lowrie, Martha Lowrie (free negroes) late of the County of Robeson [on November 10, 1863, stole] with force and arms . eight sides of leather of the value of one dollar each, one set of carpenter tools comprising chisels, files, rasps, brace and bracebits, . compasses, .hatchet &c. of the value of one hundred dollars . of one Dugald McDugald."Document Signed by the State Solicitor, a grand jury presentation against Seely Dial, Allen Lowrie, and Martha Lowrie in the Superior Court of Law. Robeson County, Fall term, 1864.02 "To the Sheriff of Robeson County . You are hereby commanded to take the body of Henry B Lowery . to answer the State of North Carolina upon a bill of indictment found against him for Murder."Document Signed by Hugh B. Regan, a warrant for the arrest of Henry B. Lowery. With the word "Confederate" struck, and "United" added. Robeson County, April 2, 1868.03 "You are hereby commanded to take the body of Henry Berry Lowry if to be found in your county . to be held for the County of Robeson . to answer unto the State of North Carolina, upon a Bill of Indictment, for Murder."Document Signed by a county clerk, a warrant to the Sheriff of Columbus County (N.C.) for the arrest of Henry Berry Lowry for murder. Robeson County, May 21, 1869.04 ".it would be difficult for the State to have a fair trial . in the County of Robeson, for that there exists in the County . a band of outlaws, known as the 'Lowerie Outlaws'."John A. Richardson, Manuscript Document Signed, as prosecutor for the state. A motion for change of venue in trial of Thomas Brady, accused of murdering Stephen Locklier, who "was in sympathy" with the Lowery Gang. Robeson County, March 4, 1872.05-.08 Four documents, each signed by the Robeson County clerk, receipts for payment for services as witnesses in the aforementioned murder trial of Thomas Brady, issued to Mary Locklear, Charlotte Locklear, James McMillan and Peter Dial. Robeson County, February 28-March 4, 1872.Historical BackgroundGeorge Alfred Townsend's 'The Swamp Outlaws' (1872), describes Lowrie as being of mixed Tuscarora, mulatto, and white blood: "The color of his skin is of a whitish yellow sort, with an admixture of copper-such a skin as, for the nature of its components, is in color indescribable, there being no negro blood in it except that of a far remote generation of mulatto, and the Indian still apparent."During the Civil War, Henry Berry Lowrie (sometimes spelled Lowry or Lowery) led a group of renegades in Robeson County who refused to abide the Home Guard's orders to impress their labor for the construction of military fortifications, specifically at Fort Fisher, which protected the critical port city of Wilmington, North Carolina.Many of the men associated with Lowrie were accused of thievery (of which the first item in this archive gives direct evidence), and of harboring escaped slaves and Confederate and Union deserters. After Berry's apparent murder of two men in late December 1864, the details of which are unclear, the County arrested his father and brother on various charges and promptly executed both. This set off a decade-long guerilla war, during which members of the Lowry Gang we. (See website for full description)
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Last Found On: 2014-10-02           Check availability:      AbeBooks    


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