History Detectives: Special Investigations

Texas Servant Girl Murders

Episode Guide »
In 1885, six African-American servants and two white society women were killed in Austin, Texas - almost all bludgeoned with an ax, dragged from their beds and raped. As quickly as the killings started, they stopped. No killer was ever identified. Desperate to find someone to blame, the authorities first rounded up hundreds of black men. Later, they pointed the finger at a white man, James Philips, whom they accused of murdering his teenage bride. Although Philips was eventually acquitted, the trial was akin to the OJ Simpson trial, with sensational, lurid details spilling out in court. After the furor and panic died down, so did the memory of the killings. Can the History Detectives solve these murders? They pore over the records and apply cutting-edge police techniques to determine who killed the servant girls of Austin.



Share your thoughts, questions, and comments on "History Detectives: Special Investigations" here.

Vermont PBS educates, informs, entertains and inspires Vermonters to be lifelong learners and engaged in their community.

Vermont Votes
From Local Debates to National Conventions, Vermont PBS Has You Covered.
Watch Discover Jazz!

Recorded live at the 2016 Burlington Discover Jazz Festival, we're back with Season 2 of Discover Jazz

Spooky Saturday Oct 29 at our studio!

Family-friendly Halloween party for kids grade 5 and under!

Kids & Family

Join our Vermont PBS Kids' Club!

PBS Kids - many videos and games for children!

Educator Resources - for teachers and parents.

PBS Parents - your child's first, best teacher.

Vermont PBS PLUS!

Learn about our second HD broadcast service offering alternative programming and more content from local and regional producers.

Sign up for the Vermont PBS Weekly

Our weekly email newsletter highlighting upcoming shows and important station news. Sign up today!



Upcoming and featured!

People talk about Vermont PBS!

Vermont PBS

204 Ethan Allen Avenue
Colchester, VT 05446
(802) 655-4800
© 2016 Vermont PBS
All Rights Reserved

Facebook Twitter YouTube LinkedIn