Initially, it appeared that there would be no justice for Julia. The citizens and local enforcement of Glen Gardner felt that the law was indeed served. Julia’s father turned her away so there was no support from her parents. Her Uncle who lived in nearby Hell Mountain took her in, along with her sister Sarah and Edward Lisk. They were present at the attack but managed to get away. The local Methodist Minister proclaimed his outrage over the rough treatment of Julia and the national news picked up the story. Shortly thereafter the fine people of Glen Gardner were visited by the County Sheriff who possessed 11 arrest warrants.
The men were arraigned on 19 November 1891 at the Humphrey Hotel in Glen Gardner, a justice was brought in from a neighboring town since it was determined that the local fellow was not impartial. If the scene which was described in one news article was true, it took quite a bit of courage for Julia to stand up to her attackers.
During the arraignment it was noted that many of the attackers wore women’s clothing, or covered their faces with rags. During the trial witnesses were interviewed to help identify who actually committed the crime. Initially, eleven men were arrested:
- John Banghart
- Benjamin Banghart – discharged arrested in error
- Austin Lisk
- Clark Lisk
- George Siegfried
- Austin Brown
- Henry Brown
- Michael Collins
- Edward Shannon
- Harry Thatcher
- Frank Miller
The trials were held in Flemington, Hunterdon County in December 1891, John Banghart and Austin Lisk were identified as the “ringleaders” so much of the news and court records focus on these two individuals. John Banghart was found guilty, which appeared to be a bit of a shock to all. His face was covered, and Julia could only identify him based on his voice. However he spent a great deal of time trying to gather people to attack Julia, and bragging about it afterwards, which left plenty of witnesses. One young man, Edward Lisk was with Julia and her sister, testified that his father Austin was one of the attackers. Not much is stated about the remaining eight vigilantes, but likely they quietly plead guilty after the ring leaders
It appears that the men ended up paying a fine, and jail time was waived. A collection was collected for Austin Lisk, and he was released once his fine was paid. This was as close to justice as Julia was going to receive.
The news attracted the attention of some prominent
individuals who were interested in helping Julia. If there was a silver lining
this would be it.
There’s more to the story so stay tuned
Banghart Case File
“For Tarring a
Woman,” The Sun [New York], 20 November
1891, page 1, column 1, digital image; Newspaper.com,
(http:///www.newspaper.com : accessed 21 October 2017).
[ii] “The Julia Beam Outrage,” The Courier News, 31 December 1891, page 2, column 2, digital image; Newspaper.com, (http:///www.newspaper.com : accessed 2 February 2019).
[iii] “A Girl Tarred and Feathered,” The Daily Republican, 8 December 1891, page 4, column 2, digital image; Newspaper.com, (http:///www.newspaper.com : accessed 2 February 2019).