Young Ty Cobb showed grit in Asheville courtroom

“As idyllic as his days in Royston [Georgia] seemed to be, [young Ty Cobb] was always delighted to visit Grandpa Johnnie, the antislavery Reb, in rural Murphy, North Carolina….

“Once, when he was about 11, he accompanied Johnnie Cobb to Asheville, where the ‘squire’ was serving as foreman of the jury in a civil matter, probably a dispute over land. When the verdict was announced by his grandfather, the loser in the case ran up and grabbed Johnnie by the shirt, an act that caused Ty to also come charging out of the audience and attempt to boot the man in the shins. The angry litigant, unaware of what a pair of Cobb-kicked pants might bring one day on the memorabilia market, swatted him away, but when he turned back to Johnnie Cobb the squire had drawn his pistol. ‘Be on your way,’ Ty’s grandpa said, and the man left peaceably.”

— From “Ty Cobb: A Terrible Beauty” by Charles Leerhsen (2015)

 

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