Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Kidnapped and Murdered: Five-Year-Old Skeegie Cash

My brother Zack C. Waters spent decades researching A Small but Spartan Band, about Florida’s Confederates in the War Between the States.  This book is now a classic in the genre.  He has also published a novel, and is currently working on another Civil War book.

Zack and I are co-authors of The Kidnapping and Murder of Little Skeegie Cash: J. Edgar Hoover and Florida’s Lindbergh Case.  This poignant true tale is set in rural Florida in the late 1930s.  Within a few months of the execution of Skeegie's killer, World War II erupted in all its tragic fury and the Cash case was largely forgotten.

Zack and I researched 4,000 pages from the original FBI files.  We were also able to obtain nearly a thousand pages of court documents, beginning with the trial of Franklin Pierce McCall, his appeals, and his execution.  We also gained access to a previously unknown archive of material about the local sheriff who fingered the suspect.

The kidnapping and murder of James Bailey “Skeegie” Cash, Jr. led to tragic consequences for all involved—except J. Edgar Hoover.  The FBI had nearly run out of money and Hoover needed a successful case that would pressure politicians to allocate additional funding.  He found his case in the kidnapping of Skeegie.  In his usual head-on, bullying style, Hoover flew down to the swamps of south Florida and turned disaster into a victory for himself and the Bureau.

Zack and I would like to invite everyone to purchase this book and read it.  It would also make a great gift for the crime reader in your family.  (NOTE: While the book is well-researched, it is written in a readable dramatic true crime style.)


Anonymous said...

When I was a kid, my mom was always chiding me to stay close to her for fear that I’d be “snatched.” When I got a little older, I decided my mom was crazy, paranoid, and overbearing. Kidnappings never really happen, right? But now that I’m much older and have heard and read countless news stories about abducted children and even adults, I realize that kidnapping is a very real threat. So I've decided that the best way to protect my family is to have them registered to SafeKidZone. It's a panic button application installed on my phone that whenver they're in trouble they will just press it and it will simultaneously alert their loved ones and the 24/7 call center that they need help and if needed, the call will be routed to the nearest 911 in their area. You can visit their site and you will find more of their interesting features

Unknown said...

Kids are always vulnerable. Kids can be easily deceived making them prone to child abduction or kidnapping. I am a father of two. They both go to school. Me and my wife go to work also. That is why I have this application downloaded on our phones. In case of an emergency, my children will just press the panic button. Then they will be connected to a response center that answers and gives help to you 24/7. This can be escalated to your nearest 911 station. Me, along with my wife and close friends as my children's safety network, will be notified also through text message or a conference call . This app certainly helps me since I am slightly busy with my work. Me and my wife worry lesser now. This can lessen yours too. Just visit their site to know more about this:!/page_home

Bill Wiley said...

My father was a reporter for the St. Petersburg Evening Independent. He witnessed the electrocution of Frank McCall and wrote a prize-winning eyewitness account of it. I have a copy of it if you would like to see it. Just leave a follow-up comment if you'd like to see it.

Robert A. Waters said...

Yes, I'd love to see a copy of the article. You can send it to kmmblog at Thanks for reading this blog.

Volgal5 said...

Skeegie was my second cousin. His mama was my great aunt. This happened way before I was born but I remember my mom talking about it and showing me newspaper clippings from when this occurred. I just found this info on your book and look forward to reading it.

Unknown said...

My mom was a classmate of Frank McCall and my uncle played football with Franklin. Your book states that the football team was the Hamilton County Trojans. This is incorrect. The Trojans did not materialize until 1972. Frank played for the Jasper Bulldogs.