This Month in Stafford County History – November 2016

Jeremiah Carter (c.1810-1863) was a respected merchant who kept stores in the village of Aquia, at Stafford Courthouse, and in Fredericksburg.  He also ran a hotel and tavern near the courthouse, which is the location of the following event.  Jeremiah Carter and his wife resided at Eastern View, which was located about where the old Bolling's Lumber Mill used to stand on Courthouse Road (Route 630) east of the courthouse.  A newspaper reported:

"Distressing Event.  William Hewitt, we hear, was killed at Stafford court House on Wednesday last by Jeremiah Carter.  The facts of the case, as we have heard them, were these.  Hewitt and Henry Atchison were fighting in Carter's house.  Carter attempted to separate them, when Hewitt turned upon him and beat him severely.  Disengaging himself, he seized a gun near, and in a moment of uncontrollable passion shot him, causing instantaneous death.  Carter is a highly respectable man, of irreproachable character, and we understand most grievously laments the event.  He is a Merchant and Hotel keeper at the Court House.  This is the third murder in the last 12 months in Stafford--and all within some 8 miles of each other.  This would seem not very creditable to the county.  Yet we believe a more peaceable and orderly people are not to be found in any county in the State" (Fredericksburg News, Nov. 1, 1850).