Tag Archives: James Larkin Pearson


Balladeer’s Blog continues its examination of the many facets of Fool Killer lore. FOR PART ONE, INCLUDING THE HISTORICAL CONTEXT IN THE 1850s, CLICK HERE

Fool Killer wardrobePART FIFTY-TWO – Some of the targets from the December of 1911 edition of James Larkin Pearson’s version of The Fool-Killer:

*** The United States Supreme Court, authors of so many miscarriages of “justice” in the nation’s history, for the way that Pearson and his Fool Killer felt the court’s vaunted dissolution of the Tobacco Trust (American Tobacco Company) was a farce. ATC was, he felt, allowed too much say in their sentence to dissolve into four separate companies.

              There was certainly a lot of truth to that take on the situation. The “new” companies were soon being accused of colluding with each other to carry out the same monopolistic practices that they had before.  Three of those four companies were found guilty of this in 1938 after years of further investigation and litigation. This calls to mind the way Big Tech basically calls its own shots by virtue of all the political figures they own.

*** Churches which allowed Bingo, a game that the odd Pearson viewed as “gambling.”   

*** George W Perkins at U.S. Steel for what Pearson and his Fool Killer considered the miserly amount that Perkins made employees eligible for under the company’s new profit-sharing plan.   

*** The masked and armed men who tarred and feathered school teacher Miss Mary Chamberlain in Shady Bend, KS. What newspapers of the time called “gossip from jealous women” regarding the teacher prompted the ugly incident, which had been planned at the mill owned by wealthy citizen E.G. Clark. The masked, pistol-packing mob stopped Chamberlain in her buggy and carried out the deed.  Continue reading


Filed under Mythology, Neglected History, opinion


Balladeer’s Blog continues its examination of the many facets of Fool Killer lore. FOR PART ONE, INCLUDING THE HISTORICAL CONTEXT, CLICK HERE

Fool Killer 1910-1929PART SIXTEEN: James Larkin Pearson, poet and newspaper man, carried on the Fool Killer tradition from 1910 to 1917, then again from 1919 to 1929. Pearson’s fellow North Carolinian Charles Napoleon Bonaparte Evans had written the Fool Killer Letters of the 19th Century so it’s appropriate that another Tar Heel continue the lore for so many years of the 20th Century.

James Larkin PearsonIn August of 1917 Pearson’s nationwide publication called The Fool-Killer changed its title and format because of America’s entry into World War One four months earlier. That change from the hard-hitting satire of Fool Killing was made to show solidarity while the war raged.

In August of 1919 Pearson changed the name back to The Fool-Killer and resumed the hard-hitting political satire. For us fans of Fool Killer lore we can put tongue in cheek and assume that the figure had gone into hibernation for a few years, like he had during the Civil War.   Continue reading


Filed under Mythology, Neglected History