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Charles Leo Gibbs
(May 2, 1879 - December 12, 1934)
Charles Leo Gibbs was born in Hyde County to Charles William Gibbs and Margaret Ann Gibbs. While Charles was said to have been a very good and supportive husband to his wife, Dora Lima (Cox) Gibbs, and a good provider for his seven children, he was also reported to have been rather unpopular in the community. Charles was said to have associated with unseemly types like bootleggers and gamblers. In fact, a night of gambling was his final night. According to the December 13, 1934 Washington Daily News, Charles was shot to death. After the murder, the body was placed on a mule-drawn cart and taken to a ditch only 200 yards from his Middletown farm house. He was then dumped and later found the next morning frozen in the snow. The body was discovered by J. E. Swindell, the local postmaster. At first it was presumed that Charles died of exposure from being in the ditch over night. But then bullet wounds were found, indicating a homicide. Charles was murdered two weeks before Christmas in 1934. A man was later arrested when tracks of a mule and cart leading to the body were then traced to his house. Blood was found on the man's car, and a missing shoe on the hoof of the mule also corresponded to the tracks found in the mud.
Following obituary was found in the Hyde County Messenger, Fairfield Monthly, Fairfield, North Carolina, January 1935
Chapter of Sorrow
Funeral services were held for C. Leo Gibbs at Amity Methodist Church on Friday at 2 o’clock. The rites were conducted by Rev. J.L. Stanford, pastor of the Methodist Church of which the deceased was a member. Interment was in Amity Cemetery. Mr. Gibbs was found dead on the Swan Quarter-Engelhard highway early Wednesday morning. The deceased was born, reared, and lived near Middletown and was a farmer and merchant. The pallbearers were: S.M. Fisher, DeWitt Lavender, J.E. Swindell (discovered the body), J.D. Silverthorne, Murrell Gibbs and Ernest Gibbs. He is survived by his widow who was the former Miss Dora Cox of Wysocking; two sons: Cecil and Russell of Lake Landing; three daughters: Mrs. Joe Swindell of Middletown, Miss Claudine Gibbs of Newport News, Virginia, and Miss Sidney Gibbs of Lake Landing; two brothers: O.B. Gibbs of Lake Landing and Jule Gibbs of Farmville; and his mother, Mrs. Margaret Gibbs of Lake Landing.
(Photo and information kindly submitted by Christopher Gibbs, great-grandson of Charles Leo Gibbs)
McGowan / Sheppard