Killed with an Axe.
Liberty, N.C. – Alex Heath, an old colored man who lived about 2 ½ miles east of here, just over in Alamance County, was found dead in bed on the morning of Feb. 7th. Someone had gone there the night before and killed him with an axe. He was struck right over the eyes and his skull broken in. It appeared that the old man had gone to bed and was asleep when he was killed. Uncle Alex, as we all called him, was a good, honest old man, and his word was his bond. He had many friends among his white neighbors. He had always been a free negro. Quite a number of Liberty people went down to see him last Sunday and they say he was the most pitiful sight they have ever seen. He had a negro man and his wife living in the house with him and they had some words the morning before and the man and his wife spent the night at a neighbor’s house about ¼ of a mile distant. He was away from the house two hours or more and suspicion was so strong he was put under arrest.
I have thought for some time that the meanest man on earth was the one who wrote letters and signed no name to them and slipped them under doors at night with the purpose of causing hard feelings among neighbors, but I reckon the man who killed Alex Heath was just a little meaner, and if we had the right man I think he ought to be beheaded and let the devil get him before his feet get cold.
… — Liberty correspondent.
Asheboro Courier, 12 February 1903.