Walt's Look Around: The Deason Home - WLBT.com - Jackson, MS

Walt's Look Around: The Deason Home

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT

With the opening of the movie, “Free State of Jones,” Newt Knight from Jones County, Mississippi, is getting a lot of attention right now.

One Newt Knight Legend from Ellisville tells us about a house that is still standing, where Knight is accused of assassinating a Confederate officer during the Civil War.

Amos Deason built the home back in 1845. Over the years it has been expanded and remodeled. Today the windows are being rebuilt. But it still retains the essence of that first little cottage.

The Tallahalla Chapter of the DAR owns the house. Justine Jones says there are plenty of reasons to keep up the Deason Home.

This is a very central part of Jones County history," said Justine. "A lot of events sort of circled around the house, particularly in the late 1800s, the Civil War, post Civil war era.

Back during the Civil War there was a band of deserters hiding out in the swamps along the Leaf River in Jones County under the leadership of Newt Knight. Both the North and the South were trying to root him and his little army out.

Because Knight thwarted the efforts of army raiders, both North and South, from confiscating the private property of the people who lived here, Jones County became known as the Free State of Jones.

And the Deason Home comes into play in that story, because Major Amos McLemore was sent by the confederacy to capture Knight and was staying in this house in 1863.

"And then, of course, the most important and infamous event that occurred here was the assassination of Major Amos McLemore by Mr. Knight, Newt Knight, here in the house in October," added Justine.

It was in this bedroom. One stormy evening McLemore was warming himself by the fire when Knight burst into the room from a door that opened onto a porch in those days, and shot the Major point blank. The story circulated that for years afterward, every time a storm approached, the bloodstain reappeared on the floor in front of the fireplace.

And today, no matter what else visitors to the home come to see, they always ask about the murder room and the bloodstain. Which, the bloodstain may still be there. But the original floor was been overlaid with another set of boards over the top of it decades ago, to hide it.

The Deason Home in Ellisville. Another place where history and infamy meet, and help nourish the legend of the Free State of Jones and Newt Knight.

The Deason Home is open this Saturday from 4 until 7:30 and then every 1st and 3rd Saturday during the rest of the summer from 1pm until 4pm.

Check out the Deason home’s web page here. 

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