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Money and Blood

Money and Blood Cover

Hard Cover, 284 Pages,
48 Photos

Money and Blood is true.  Taken from police files, newspaper morgues and Mississippi history, the story is about the flow of dollars and death along old US Highway 80; the highway that has come to be known as the highway of broken dreams.  When Interstate 20 was completed along side US Highway 80 in Mississippi, it took all of the interstate traffic from the old route and left economic chaos.

To survive, most of the business places along Highway 80 turned into dangerous gambling joints and honky tonks, where those who survived learned to sit with their backs to the wall.

The story begins along a maze of tiny little dirt roads, some barely wagon trains, that would within a few short years become US Highway 80.  The year was 1915 when a Gypsy caravan entered Meridian to bury their queen who died in childbirth in Alabama.  Many years later a killer stopped young women on the highway with flashing lights near the mysterious Irvin Motel.

Ten miles west of Meridian at Meehan Junction, two promising young men were murdered and placed on the railroad tracks where a train ran over them.  The authorities closed the cases as accidental deaths, but were they... really?

A few miles farther west we enter the town of Hickory with a population of 499 people, we we encounter the entrepreneurs.  Georgia Tann got rich sending babies to the rich and famous.  In Hollywood and New York , a black man born in Hickory named Robert Johnson sold BET TV and put a billion dollars in his pocket.

All along the way recent events are tempered, explained and measured against similar events of the distant past.  Count on Hewitt Clark to get the whole story for you.


More about Money and Blood:

U.S. Highway 80 travels nearly 2,500 miles on the journey from Savannah to San Diego.  One hundred sixty four of those miles are in Mississippi.  This segment is the focus of Hewitt Clarke’s book, “Money and Blood:  Along the Highway of Broken Dreams.”

In Part One:  The Dagger, Clarke covers the story of the 1983 Highway 80 stalker, Larry Fisher.  Beginning with his first victim, Patsy Jo Rivers, in February of 1983, Clarke follows the Larry Fisher Case to its conclusion at Parchman farm where Fisher still wears number 41417 and continues paying his life-long debt to society.  Along the way we learn about the tricks of the trade and dedication of the officers of the Lauderdale County Sheriff Department who pull out all the stops to trap this dangerous predator.

In another historical vignette, we consider the Irvin Motel, a Lauderdale County landmark for many years.  Before having been demolished, it loomed over U.S. 80 like a medieval castle in Scotland.  It was unique has a fascinating history.  For years it was one of the finest, if not the finest motel along Highway 80 anywhere in the South.  In the early days, movie stars and famous celebrities stayed at the motel.  There were stories about Mafia chiefs from the north hanging out there when things got too hot at home.

Money and Blood:  Along the Highway of Broken Dreams, Part Two:  Mayhem at Meehan explores a number of unusual historical and recent cases including the unsolved Reynolds/Mabry Case, while Part Three:  The Entrepreneurs of Hickory, discusses the so-called “baby seller,” Georgia Tann and takes a look at the self-made multi-millionaire and owner of Black Entertainment Television (BET), Robert Johnson.

  • Publisher:  Lone Star Press
  • Date Published:  May 2012.
  • ISBN:  978-0-9649231-6-5
  • Pages:  284

To order directly from Lone Star Press, please send check or money order for $30.00 (includes $5.00 shipping and handling) to: Lone Star Press, P.O. Box 1901, Spring, TX 77383.  Please visit our order page for pricing on all of Lone Star Press' Hewitt Clarke books.



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