Jessie Hightower

Location(s): Union Springs, Alabama

Decade: 1940s

On December 1, 1945, Officer Dewey Bradley shot and killed Jessie Hightower, an African-American resident of Union Springs, Alabama. Three days after the Hightower shooting, Bradley was relieved of his duty as a police officer. On October 13, 1945, Bradley shot and killed Edgar B. Thomas Sr., a 63-year-old wealthy business man and shop owner. Bradley’s involvement in the two deaths was brought before the Circuit Grand Jury, but no indictments were issued. The FBI also 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 case of Edgar B. Thomas, Sr., who was also shot and killed by Officer Bradly in Union Springs.

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