Name: Crawford BURNETT
Birth: ABT 1785 in Hanover Co., VA
Death: 8 NOV 1845 in Fayetteville, Washington Co., AR
Reference Number: 46
---Source: Virginia Marriage Index, 1740-1850: Crawford Burnett - Viny Sharp, 29 Dec 1810, Patrick Co., VA
---Source: June Bork - The Burnetts and Their Connections, Vol. 1, page 276.
Crawford and Vina moved to Trigg Co., KY with brother Cornelius and moved again to Washington Co., Arkansas where he, his wife, and son John were hanged for murder in 1845.
---Source: History of Benton County, COURTS AND CRIME, page 191
In 1845 occurred the first legal executions in Washington County. In the autumn of that year Crawford Burnett, his wife Lavinia, and his son John, were hung for the murder of Jonathan Selby. Selby was a bachelor living some few miles from Fayetteville, and was murdered for the money he was supposed to keep in his house. Much excitement was aroused, and suspicion fell upon the Burnetts. They were taken
into custody, and a daughter, a young girl about fifteen years of age, confessed that her parents had planned the murder, and that her brother, John, had executed it. Before the arrests the latter had gone to Missouri, and only Burnett and his wife were taken into custody. They were tried at a special term in October, 1845. A. B. Greenwood was prosecuting attorney, and the judge assigned Isaac Strain and James P. Neal to defend the prisoners. Isaac Murphy also volunteered his services for the defense. The defendants were tried separately, and a verdict of guilty returned in each case. The trials were short, the principal witness being the daughter that had confessed to the guilt of the parents. They were sentenced to be hung on November 8, 1845, less than thirty days after the trial. At the appointed time a gallows was erected on the hill south of town, not far from the National Cemetery, and there in the presence of almost the entire county Crawford and Lavinia Burnett were landed into eternity. Soon after their execution John Burnett was arrested, and returned to the county. He was indicted, and after a brief trial found guilty, and on December 4, 1845, was sentenced to be hung on the 26th of the same month. His attorneys were Isaac Murphy and A. M. Wilson. They believed their client innocent of the crime, and did all in their power to save him, but, in the face of the two prior convictions and the testimony of the sister, that was but little; he was hanged on the day named, on the same scaffold where his parents had met their deaths less than two months before.
Father: John BURNETT III b: 1761 in Hanover Co., VA
Mother: Elizabeth TATE b: 1765 in Hanover Co., VA
Lavinia May "Vina" SHARP b: ABT 1785
29 DEC 1810
in Patrick Co., VA
- John BURNETT b: ABT 1811
- Minerva BURNETT b: ABT 1820