Milton Cross Barron

Written by Gene Barron

Milton Cross Barron

Some die-hard Southerners and hot heads in the area began joining a new organization called the KKK or Ku Klux Klan. An offshoot of the KKK that operated in Spearsville was called the Night-Riders. It is rumored that Milton Cross Barron was an active participant in the group. Milton was the grandson of Henry and Sarah Barron. According to family members that remember their father talking about him, say that Cross was a wicked man. He lived up to his name and seemed not to have a good mood. Family lore says that he even beat his wife from time to time, which might have led to his demise.

Many think that the law was getting close to catching him so he packed up his family and moved to Texas where on March 16, 1909 he was shot and killed by his son-in-law, Walter W. Pratt. Pratt was from Texas, the son of  Joseph J. and Adeline Pratt. It seems that some of the family members had discussed killing Cross, but nothing ever came of it until that faithful day in 1909. Walter had been squirrel hunting and came up on Cross, his wife and one of their son’s, William, clearing new ground. Walter approached William, who was about Walter’s age, and asked how he was feeling. The boy told him he didn’t feel well. Walter told him to come go to the house with him and help clean his squirrel and he’d feel better. When Cross saw Walter, he yelled at him from some distance away, “What are you doing here? Get out of here!” Walter walked toward Cross and, when Cross repeated his demand, Walter raised his shotgun and fired. Cross slumped to the ground. Walter walked a little closer and fired again. The autopsy stated that Cross died of buckshot wounds. Strange, since Walter had been squirrel hunting and no one uses buckshot to hunt squirrel.

Walter was tried and convicted and sent to prison. He had only served a short time in prison, however, when he was released. He then disappeared.

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Gene BarronGene Barron is a native of Spearsville, Union Parish, Louisiana. He has a genealogy database of 182,000 names, who are all connected to his family.

Gene has also written two historical books on Union Parish. I highly recommend both.

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