Edgar Thomas

Location(s): Union Springs, Alabama

Decade: 1940s

On October 13, 1945, Edgar B. Thomas Sr., a 63-year-old wealthy businessman and shop owner, was shot to death in Union Springs, by Officer Dewey Bradley. On December 1, 1945, Officer Bradley shot and killed Jessie Hightower. Three days after the Hightower shooting, Bradley was relieved of his duty as a police officer. The matter of Edgar Thomas’s and Jessie Hightower’s deaths was brought before the Circuit Grand Jury, but no indictments were issued. The FBI investigated these incidents but declined prosecution.

The collection includes: correspondence between Louis E. Burnham and Bernice E. Brile; news articles; Thomas’s death certificate; Hightower’s death certificate; Josh Jenkins’ Report on Jessie Hightower; Kenneth C. Kennedy report; census records; Union Springs ILD Pamphlet; and CRRJ student, Hunter Keil’s essay, “Union Springs, Alabama 1945: Three Months and Three Victims.” See summary report for Jessie Hightower, who was also shot and killed by Officer Bradley in Union Springs.

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