Victim Name: Philip Mabry/Mobry
Method of Death: Hanged
Accusation: Murder of a prominent and influential white dentist
Mob Composition: Masked
Summary: Philip Mabry (or Mobry) was lynched on December 24th, 1890 in Boydton, Mecklenburg for the murder of Dr. Riggan, a prominent white dentist. Two other African American men are suspected to have been lynched in connection with the murder of Riggan.
On Saturday, December 20th, 1890, a 56-year-old white resident of Mecklenburg county, Dr. E. H. Riggan, “was brutally murdered at his store […] by a party of negroes. The murdered man’s skull was crushed in and his throat cut from ear to ear” (Alexandria Gazette). On December 24th, 1890, five black individuals were arrested and put in Mecklenburg’s County Jail in Boydton with the accusation of having murdered Dr. Riggan. On that night, according to the Evening Star, one of the accused murderers, Philip Mabry, “was taken from the jail at Boydton by a large body of masked man and lynched. He was carried a short distance from the jail, where a rope was placed around his neck and he was hung to a limb of a tree.” Several other reports suggest that two more African American men accused of participating to the murder of Dr. Riggan were lynched later on; in particular, the Richmond Dispatch on January 1st 1891 reported that three persons were “swung up to trees and placarded, ‘Whoever interferes with or cuts down this body will be similarly dealt with'”. The Roanoke Times and the Shenandoah Herald instead reported in mid-January 1891 that “two negroes […] have suddenly disappeared. The prevailing impression is that the negroes have been lynched by ‘White Caps'” (The Roanoke Times), or that they “have been summarily dealt with by White Caps” (Shenandoah Herald). These possible two lynching victims have not been further confirmed.
News Coverage: Alexandria Gazette; Evening Star; Richmond Dispatch; Shenandoah Herald; The Roanoke Times; The TimesArticle Link (from Evening Star published on 1890-12-26)
Article Link (from Alexandria Gazette published on 1890-12-24)
Article Link (from Alexandria Gazette published on 1891-01-14)
Article Link (from Shenandoah Herald published on 1891-01-16)
Article Link (from The Times published on 1890-12-27)
Article Link (from Richmond Dispatch published on 1890-12-25)
Article Link (from Richmond Dispatch published on 1890-01-01)
Article Link (from The Roanoke Times published on 1890-12-25)
Article Link (from The Roanoke Times published on 1891-01-14)