Night Riders of Reelfoot Lake: The Untold Story (SIGNED BY BOTH AUTHORS)
Union City, TN: Forrester Wood Publication, 2001. First Edition, First Printing. Hardcover. 6 X 9 1/4 Inches. 176 PP. Near Fine / Very Good. Item #733
Scarce private printing in original DJ. Signed by R.C. Forrester and Betty Burdick Wood directly on the title-page. Betty is the granddaughter of John Carlos Burdick, whose commercial fishing business of Reelfoot Lake precipitated much of the terror brought about by the so-called Night Riders. The Night Riders were a group of violent masked men who burned and murdered those who they believed stood against them in keeping Reelfoot Lake free and open to the public. A group, including Quentin Rankin (later murdered by the Night Riders), pushed to purchase the rights to land around the lake. The goal was to drain the lake and use the land for farming. This position stood directly against many locals who relied on the lake as a food source in the early 20th Century. J.C. Burdick owned the fishing rights to the lake as well as the commerical fishing docks. In addition to the murder of Rankin at the hands of the Riders, Burdick's docks were burned and he was threatened for his supposed connection to the imperialists behind the lake plans. Eventually, the Governor and the National Guard shut down the vigilantes. Many of them were imprisoned and sentenced to death, only to be released the following year.
A very rare first-hand account from the granddaughter of one of the notable figures of this struggle. Of particular interest to students of social movements in America as well as those with an interest in Tennessee history. Book is essentially AS NEW condition. Blue cloth with gold gilt lettering. DJ worn a bit at the edges with a few very small closed tears. SCARCE.