THE SOUTHWESTERN HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
VOL. LXVI JANUARY, 1963 No. 3
eorge WashiHytoN Diamod's
Accouit of the Great Aaigr9
at faiesVille, 1862
Edited by SAM ACHESON and
JULIE ANN HUDSON O'CONNELL*
AUNIONIST "PEACE PARTY PLOT" aimed at revolt against the
Confederate government in Texas, was discovered in Sep-
tember, 1862, in the North Texas area including Cooke,
Grayson, Wise, Denton, and Collin counties. Prompt action by
local authorities broke up the organization in October, 1862.
Following a declaration of martial law in Cooke County, a "Cit-
izens Court," or jury, of twelve men composed of army officers
and civilians was formed at Gainesville. It found thirty-nine of
the participants guilty and sentenced them to be hanged for con-
spiracy and insurrection. Three other prisoners who were members
of military units were permitted trial by court martial as they
requested and were subsequently hanged by its order.
Since that time the only reliable and lengthy account of the
awesome event has been the one written by a member of the jury,
Thomas Barrett, The Great Hanging at Gainesville, Cooke
County Texas, October, A. D. 1862 (Gainesville, 1885). An ex-
tremely rare item of Texana, it was reprinted in 1961 by the
Texas State Historical Association.
Soon after the "Great Hanging," George Washington Diamond,
a newspaper editor and publisher of Henderson, who had joined
*The editors wish to express their appreciation for the assistance and counsel in
editing the manuscript of members of the Diamond family and of H. Bailey Carroll.
They also wish to thank Kathryn S. Hughes and Ruth Harris of Dallas for
transcribing the manuscript for publication. Full responsibility for all decisions
and interpretations of textual matters in the editing is assumed by the editors. The
author's sentence structure and punctuation have been carefully preserved.
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101196/. Accessed November 28, 2015.