1905 – Middlesboro, Kentucky – John Golden kills James Smith in self-defense

Golding / Golden / Goulding et al Family History on Facebook

To what Golden family does John and Powell (Paul?) Golden belong?


“Killing at Middlesboro”

Middlesboro, Ky., July 24 (1905) — John Golden, the eighteen-year-old son of Powell Golden, of this place, shot and instantly killed James Smith. Golden emptied the contents of a shotgun into Smiths heart.

There were no eye-witnesses to the shooting, but Golden claims that Smith was beating a boy named Marion Branscomt, when he interfered and Smith struck him with a beer bottle, whereupon he shot in self-defense.”

Source: The Paducah Evening Sun (Paducah, Kentucky), 24 Jul 1905, Monday, page 2.

Middlesboro, Kentucky
Source: The Paducah Evening Sun (Paducah, Kentucky), 24 Jul 1905, Monday, page 2.


It appears that Marion Branscom survived the attack. He died on September 22, 1968 (b1894) and is buried in the Rains Cemetery, Middlesboro, Bell Co., KY. His parents were Thomas Branscom & Annie Mayes … should that ring any memories.

I can find no reference to any Powell Golden in any of my resources. My guess is that Powell may well be Paul; phonetically they are the same depending upon the pronounciation. W is ‘double u’ … so if you pronounce Powell as Pou-uell …

You are welcome to add to or to correct this story by contacting: Bill Golden, Norfolk1956@gmail.com

BTW – I look forward to sharing your stories, photos and in-search-of quests. Contact me at the email address above.