Face in the Courthouse Window Part 3: Nathaniel Pierce

Part 3

If you haven’t read the first two parts of this blog you will need to before you read this one.

After the courthouse of Carrolton, Alabama burned in 1876, the town immediately suspected Henry Wells of doing it.  Henry a former slave was known for being foul mouth and mean tempered.

In 1877, a totally unrelated incident to place in the small town.  Nathaniel Pierce, a black man, was being held in the local jail for suspicion of  murder, when a mob broke in and demanded him.  The deputy (not the sheriff) tried to stop them but soon gave in.   September 26, 1877, Nathaniel Pierce was lynched  You have to remember that this was post reconstruction south, racial tensions were very high.

While Pierce’s death had nothing to do with the courthouse burning, it does explain the part of the legend of the prophecy “spoken” by Henry Wells in the court house attic.  “I’ll haunt you forever.”  These words could just have easily been spoken by Nathaniel just a the mob put the noose around his neck.

As for the face.  yes there is a face or something in the lower right hand corner of the attic window of the courthouse in Carrolton, Alabama.  Is it Henry Wells, Nathaniel Pierce or someone else.  Is it man made or a freak of nature.  No one knows.   But all anyone knows is that a lone silent face keeps watch over this small southern town.




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