Vernon Macord went from one of the most loved of Maundbury's residents of the 1800s to one of the most reviled.
He was one of the key architects of the time, building many of the towns residences and town buildings. He put much of the money he earned back into the community and funded several major community programs of the time including a shelter for the homeless and an orphanage.
A church going man, Vernon Macord spent some time as a traveling preacher along the Appalachian Trail.
He returned to much acclaim and began work on a new Town Hall and a residential home.
Macord was seen as a pillar of the community until 1815 when the body of a man was discovered in his cellar when some children were playing in the area. The man was badly beaten and gagged. Several crosses were carved into the man’s back, arms and face. The man's name was Mathew Tate and he was able to recount the tale of Macord's doings. He said that Macord was "possesed with evils" and that he spent time trying to convert Tate to Christianity even though he was already a Christian. Tate said that Macord spoke in tongues and "had fits of rage that made him a wild thing". The man was cared for, but died several days later.
When the home was searched, the body of a young woman was found in the attic. She was thought to be a prostitute, but her identity was never confirmed due to the severe wounds she had and the decomposition of the body.
Another woman was found in a shed at the back of Macord’s property. It was said that “No God fearing soul could ever inflict such horrors on another human being, let alone one of the fairer sex.”
Various, handmade devices were found in the home that were used by Macord when dealing with his victims.
Two groups hunted down Vernon Macord - a group that had been organized by Hamilton Armitage to bring him to the law and a trial and a lynch mob that had spun up and out of control like a wild blaze. Armitage’s group found him first and brought him in.
At the trial, Macord showed no remorse and remained silent. He brought nothing to his own defense, nor offered up any reason for the events. When asked about the number of victims, it is reported that Macord smiled a wide, sickening smile and remained quiet. He was sentenced immidately - death by hanging. He was taken to Maundbury Jail to await his fate. Angry groups were barely able to be held back as he was taken away.
Vernon Macord was spirited away from his jail cell under cover of darkness that night by a group of men. He was tortured, beaten, and hung from his neck at Arborgaunt Weald .