On this approximate spot on May 10, 1889 three members of the Baldknobbers were hanged for murder.
The name came from the Bald Knob hilltops on which the Taney County group met.
After the Civil War justice on the area was minimal. In the beginning the Baldknobbers were a group of men dedicated to bring law and order back to the area. While starting out to punish criminals, they eventually harmed innocent people, culminating on the deaths of two members of the Edens and Greene families in Oldfield.
After extensive trials, four Baldknobbers were sentenced to death. Before the hanging one member escaped jail and was never recaptured.
It was expected that the Governor would commute the sentences of the remaining three. This did not happen and the executions were carried out. This ended the reign of Baldknobber justice in the Ozarks.
"This marker is not to commemorate the violent acts resulting in many deaths, including those hanged here. It has been erected so that we will remember what happened, so it does not happen again. We would like to forget this part of our past, but must not."
Erected 2009 by Christian County Historical Society.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Law Enforcement. A significant historical date for this entry is May 10, 1889.
Location. 37° 1.212′ N, 93° 12.331′ W. Marker is in Ozark, Missouri, in Christian County. Marker is on 2nd Street south of Elm Street, on the left when traveling south. Marker is on the southeast grounds of the county courthouse. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 101 N 2nd St, Ozark MO 65721, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Commercial Block (within shouting distance of this marker); Commercial Building (within shouting distance of this marker); Veterans Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); Christian County (approx. half a mile away); Jackie Marie Stiles (approx. 6.9 miles away); William Payne Stewart (approx. 6.9 miles away); Jack Buck (approx. 7 miles away); John Q. Hammons (approx. 7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Ozark.
Also see . . .
1. End of the Baldknobbers. (Submitted on September 29, 2012, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. Bald Knobbers: The Ozark Vigilantes. (Submitted on September 29, 2012, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
Additional keywords. vigilantism, vigilantes,
Credits. This page was last revised on May 3, 2021. It was originally submitted on September 29, 2012, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 2,231 times since then and 678 times this year. It was the Marker of the Week May 2, 2021. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on September 29, 2012, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.