Altavista in Campbell County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
Origin of Lynch Law
Erected 1997 by Department of Historic Resources. (Marker Number L-30.)
Location. 37° 7.75′ N, 79° 16.105′ W. Marker is in Altavista, Virginia, in Campbell County. Marker is at the intersection of Main Street (Business U.S. 29) and Wards Droad (U.S. 29), on the left when traveling south on Main Street. Touch for map. It is about one mile north
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 14 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Clement Hill (approx. 2.6 miles away); Shady Grove (was approx. 11 miles away but has been reported missing. ); New London (approx. 11.9 miles away); Callaway–Steptoe Cemetery (approx. 12.3 miles away); New London Academy (approx. 12.4 miles away); a different marker also named New London Academy (approx. 12.4 miles away); Hickey's Road (was approx. 13.7 miles away but has been reported missing. ); Old Rustburg (approx. 13.8 miles away).
More about this marker. This marker replaced a marker with the same name and number dating from the late 1920s that read “A hundred yards west stands a walnut tree under which Colonel Charles Lynch, William Preston, Robert Adams, Jr., James Callaway and others held an informal court for the trial of tories and criminals, 1780. Punishment usually consisted of whipping. From this rude justice the term ‘Lynch Law’ was evolved.”
Also see . . . William Lynch Wikipedia Entry. “The term “Lynch’s Law” was used as early as 1782 by a prominent Virginian named Charles Lynch to describe his actions in suppressing a suspected Loyalist uprising in 1780 during the American Revolutionary War. The suspects were given a summary trial at an informal court; sentences handed down included whipping, property seizure, coerced pledges of allegiance, and conscription into the military. Charles Lynch’s extralegal actions were retroactively legitimized by the Virginia General Assembly in 1782.” (Submitted on May 17, 2013, by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia.)
Categories. • Government • War, US Revolutionary •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on May 17, 2013, by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia. This page has been viewed 466 times since then and 56 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on May 17, 2013, by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia.