This week in Memphis history: May 2-May 8

By Bill Dries

Members of the Memphis Red Sox, Martin Stadium, 1946

1950: Among the new privilege licenses listed in The Daily News was one for Martin Stadium, 476 Crump Blvd. The ballpark was the home of the Negro League Memphis Red Sox, named for the owner of the team. The new privilege license was filed three years after Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in major league baseball, although racial segregation off the field remained a fact of life for many years following Robinson’s integration of baseball.

1939: John Crump, the son of political kingpin E.H. Crump, died in a plane crash at Grenada, Miss. along with the pilot of the plane and a reporter from The Commercial Appeal. The young Crump was seen by some as a potential heir apparent to his father.

Source: “Mr. Crump of Memphis” by William D. Miller.

1932: Aurelia Puryear and her 8-year-old daughter, also named Aurelia, were hacked to death with an ax as they were sleeping at their South Memphis home. A police detective who lived nearby ran to the house when he heard several gunshots and discovered a fatally wounded man, Will Jamison, who lived long enough to tell the detective that Puryear’s husband, Stanley, had lured him to the house and then shot him to frame him for the ax murders. Puryear was acquitted of Jamison’s murder but was eventually convicted of the murders of his wife and daughter.