There are very few documented incidents that tell of the Night Rider activities in Crittenden County. Two that I know of are the beating of Henry Bennett at Dycusburg and the burning of the Cardin tobacco barns that were located a short distance from the community of Crayne.
This story is about the beating of Henry Bennett. The Bennett Brothers owned an independent factory at Dycusburg, and they had been reported as buying tobacco from non-association growers. This caused the Night Riders to pay Mr. Bennett a visit.
The picture at right was the sight of the terrifying visit paid Henry Bennett by the Night Riders on Feb. 3, 1908. This home was located just outside the town of Dycusburg on Hwy. 295. It was built in 1897 and was one of the handsomest residence in the county. The attractive gabled home must have been a grand sight in its day. It sat empty many years and was torn down in 2000. What a shame we had to lose this important part of our past history.
Henry Bennett's name is etched in Crittenden County history as the man that was called from this home on the night of Feb. 3, 1908 and severally beaten by the Night Riders. In March 1910 when the trial of these Night Riders came to Court, Henry Bennett was there to identify some of them. Bennett alleged that the night riders took him from his home when he was caring for his sick child. He declared that they stripped him of all his clothing but his trousers and undershirt, and he begged them to allow him to put on his socks that he might walk over the frozen ground, he alleged they said: "d.. your socks."
Bennett also said that more than seventy thorns were taken from his body after the whipping. He also said that his face was badly beaten and great lumps were on his head.
Mr. Bennett is buried in the Dycusburg Cemetery. He died Oct. 20, 1910.
His wife had engraved on the back of his stone, "Killed By The Night Riders". Etched on the stone and in our history the cause of his death.