Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Murderess of Dr. Will Visnon

Here is an interesting story of one of our relatives, Dr. William D. "Will" or "Willie" Vinson.

Will was born in the Lickskillet section of Cherokee County in 1860.  He became a dentist.  He married a redhead, Katie Tribble.  They had two sons.  Katie died of tuberculosis  on March 1, 1898. 
Will married their housekeeper, widowed Jennie Clark Hogan.   

One story by Doctor Vinson's granddaughter handed down this story:  At some point after Will and Jennie's marriage she sent him out to draw water from the well.  It was getting dark.  A fog was settling in, and while he was there it descended into the yard and took the shape of Will's ex-wife Katie's face and hovered over a fence post.  Willie stood there just staring at it Jennie came out and saw the image too and fainted.

Jennie and Willie's marriage did not last very long.  Their divorced was final on Dec 3, 1900.

In 1903 William Dean Vinson married a third time Cora Lou Jackson Tallent, a divorcee with one daughter.  The doctor and Cora had two daughters and one son together.  The couple often quarreled and separated several times.  The doctor took steps to procure a divorce from Cora but she refused, afraid she would get nothing.

On March 30, 1922, Cora hired a taxi to take her to Will's office on Marietta Street, in Atlanta.  She walked  into the waiting room passed the patients, went to the doctor's office where he was bent over writing a prescription, she called his name and when he looked up she shot him right in the eye.  She emptied the chambered shooting him in the head and throat.  She walked back out through the waiting room, passed the  patients, and got back into the waiting cab.  She was immediately apprehended.

She was found guilty of murder , sentenced to die but was not executed.  A second trial commuted her sentence t life imprisonment, where she grew bitter and not the least bit resentful.  She made it known when she was released she was going to shoot Willie and Tillie, her stepsons.

Willie carried a pistol where he went until he died in 1945.

Cora lived on until 1953, having been pardoned some twenty years earlier.  She lived in Atlanta with her daughter.

The story was sent to me by  relative and  articulate detailed  researcher F. Tucker of South Carolina.    

As I typed it I reworded it to conform to my own style but  facts remained the same.

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