Maloy Allred – Just A Good Ole Boy…

by:  Linda Allred Cooper

Lineage:  Maloy, Jesse, John, John, unknown Allred woman and Samuel Finley, Solomon born 1680 England

I love researching the Bad Boys.  They are so much more interesting than the Good Boys.  Great stories!   One of the “bad boys” in my branch of the family tree was my Great Great Great Uncle Maloy Allred.  His older brother, Emsley, was my Great Great Grandfather. 

Maloy Allred was born in 1822, the youngest son of Jesse and Alsey York Allred.   No doubt the spoiled baby of the family, he grew up on a small farm in northeast Randolph County.  He was 22 years old and still living at home when his father died in 1844. 

Maloy married his first wife, Barbara Underwood, April 20, 1848.  One year later their son, Warren, was born.  Barbara became pregnant again, but died from complications of the pregnancy in 1851.  Maloy, left alone with a baby to support and care for, moved back in with his mother and sisters for while so they could help care for the baby. 

The young widower did not stay lonely for long.   Randolph County Bastardy Bonds document Lucinda Swift took Maloy to court, naming him as the father of her illegitimate child in December 1853.   Maloy appeared in court February 13, 1854 to answer the charges and admit he was the father of Lucinda's child.  November 8, 1854 Maloy and Lucinda were back in court.  This time, with the help of Henry Wheeler and James Hinshaw, Maloy posted a $500 bond to guarantee that Lucinda's child would be cared for. 

Maloy must have been a “smooth talking devil” because the Bastardy drama in court did not slow down his love life any.   In between appearances in court to answer for fathering Lucinda’s illegitimate child, Maloy courted and sweet-talked Rachel Marley into marrying him.  The wedding took place on August 10, 1854 and life for the newlyweds was challenging.  They spent their first few years living with Maloy’s widowed mother, Alsey, and his two sisters, Cynthia Ann and Elizabeth in a small 2 room log cabin house surrounded by extended family.  Rachel also became an instant mother to Maloy’s little 6 year old son, Warren.    

She settled into her new life quickly and in 1856 she gave birth their first child, Denny.   Maloy and Rachel had 8 children who survived to adulthood, 9 if you include Warren, Maloy's child from his first marriage.  The 1860 Federal Census for Randolph County shows Maloy and Rachel with Warren (10), Denney (4), Matthew (3) and Murphy (6 months).  Maloy was working as a Carpenter, living next door to his mother Alsey (70) and sisters Cynthia Ann (50) and Elizabeth (40). 

Everything appears to still be ok when the 1870 census was taken.  Maloy had moved a short distance away and was living in Liberty Township, Randolph County next door to his older brother, Emsley.  Maloy and Rachel had 6 children living with them:  Denny (14) Murphy (10), Joseph (5), Peter (6), John (4) and Nancy J. (3).  Oldest son Warren was living nearby and working on the farm of Peter Freeman as a laborer.  Maloy was working as a Shoe and Boot Maker.   Well…officially that was how he was making a living…

Maloy had never been a “hard worker”, preferring to make money any easy way possible, his preference being operating a moonshine still.  A little gambling on the side brought in some money occasionally, and when all else failed, he could fall back on his skill as a carpenter or shoe maker.   

Moonshine was big business in those days.  Everyone had at least one family member operating a still.  Maloy’s brother, Emsley, and nephew, George Scotton Allred, had several stills along the creek that ran behind their property.  The “liquor joints” in Greensboro and Fayetteville were always in the market for good ‘shine and the Allreds and others were eager to keep them supplied.  Whenever they had a “full batch” of ‘shine ready to sell, the Allreds would flag down a train and load it up with their home-brew.  The federal government didn’t get involved as long as the liquor tax was being paid.  The moon-shiners paid the tax by purchasing stamps that were supposed to be put on each jug of moon-shine.  Family stories tell how my Great Grandfather George Scotton Allred (Maloy’s brother) would keep the tax stamps in his pocket when he flagged down the train.  If the Revenuers were on the train and paying attention, he would put the stamps on each gallon of ‘shine.  If no Revenuers were onboard, the stamps stayed in his pocket until next time.  

Maloy, of course, grew up knowing how this “game” worked and, let’s face it, tending a still is much easier than having a “real job”.  Paid better too.   However, if caught, the consequences were dire.  Maloy’s brother-in-law, Haywood Marley, found this out in 1868 when his still was raided and destroyed.  50 acres of Haywood’s property was confiscated and sold at public auction as part of his penalty for “running” moonshine. 

A few years later, sadly, Rachel died January 10, 1877 and Maloy’s life began to spin out of control.   Just 6 short months after Rachel’s death, Maloy appears in a short article on page 2 of the newspaper The Alamance Gleaner from June 19, 1877:

Maloy Allred shot Deputy Sheriff Lamb on last Friday.  The sheriff was attempting to serve some process on him.  Allred concealed himself in his house and refused to come out.  After he had been called to three times to come out, he fired and hit Mr. Lamb in the face and breast with several shot.  Allred is still at large.

Although Maloy’s brother-in-law, Haywood Marley, apparently straightened up and behaved after his arrest – or at least never got caught again – Maloy had watched the whole arrest and trial process and figured out the informants and witnesses testifying against the moonshiners were getting paid.  Easy Money!  Maloy began guiding the Revenuers around the area, pointing out the moonshine stills and naming names – and some of the people named were upstanding members of the community.  True – some of them were actual moonshiners, but most were not and didn’t appreciate being arrested and hauled into court accused of various crimes.  Maloy, at least, didn’t discriminate.  He even accused his own nephew of burning down a barn per page 2 of the Greensboro North State on January 23, 1879.

By the way, a very interesting trial came off last night in the Court-house before Col. Moore and two other justices of the peace.  It was the State vs Bethel Allred, charged with burning a stable or barn, the property of one Maloy Allred.  I reckon most of the solicitors of Randolph, for some years back, have heard something of Maloy – have either heard of his virtues or his vices.  The defendant, Bethel Allred, was discharged – it appearing very clearly that he was not guilty of the charge and Maloy was ordered to pay the costs which he very reluctantly did. 

After being caught telling a few more lies like this while under Oath, Maloy’s new career came to a screeching halt. 

Maloy’s next endeavor put his artistic skills to “good” use.  He began to make and distribute counterfeit money – coins!!   An article on page 4 of The Observer, Raleigh, North Carolina’s daily newspaper from Dec 12, 1879 tells the story:

On last Saturday the notorious Maloy Allred was arrested by Deputies Dougan Brower and Jasper Frazier for counterfeiting and passing counterfeit money.  For five years he has been the terror of all true law abiding citizens of the Sandy Creek community.  Suspicion has been resting upon him as a heavy dealer in spurious money, for some time, but he successfully evaded detection until within the last few days when it was positively known that he had been passing counterfeit money in large quantities to several of his neighbors.  He was taken before Prestly Fox, Esq., and bound over to court, and in default of bail was brought to this place Sunday and lodged in jail to await the action of the law.  For years he was a notorious blockader, finding that did not pay him well enough, he acted as guide for the revenue officers, and never hesitated to have the most respectable citizens in that section arrested if he could get to be a witness in the Federal courts and receive his per diem.  After his arrest Saturday the officers found a large quantity of spurious money, three sets of moulds for making three, five and ten cent pieces – a large amount of ammunition and fourteen loaded guns and pistols.  He was well prepared to defend himself and doubtless would have done so had not the officers slipped upon him unexpectedly while he was cleaning his gun. 

Maloy wasn’t opposed to having help and luring his own children down the sordid path.  Page 3 of the newspaper Alamance Gleaner from December 24, 1879 tells us Maloy’s sons Peter and Norman were with him when he was arrested.

Maloy Allred and his two sons, Peter and Norman, have been arrested and lodged in Randolph jail charged with making and passing counterfeit hard money. 

Maloy’s arrest became state-wide news in North Carolina.  The Weekly Star, Wilmington, NC’s newspaper gives more information about the arrest.  (Page 3, December 12, 1879)

Maloy Allred was arrested in Sandy Creek neighborhood of Randolph County on the 29th of November last by Deputy Sheriff W. D. Brower, for counterfeiting hard money.  When arrested they found three sets of moulds, of the denominations of tens, twenty-fives and fifties.  He gave his pocket book to his little son and told him to run with it, but he was captured and the pocket-book with it, together with some of his counterfeit money.  He fought like a tiger but was overcome by the Sheriff. 

Maloy wasn’t content to remain in jail waiting for his trial.  Page 3 of The Alamance Gleaner from July 14 1880 tells us:

Maloy Allred, a noted counterfeiter, made his escape from Randolph jail a few days ago.  He was captured in Greensboro last Thursday and lodged in Guilford jail. 

Finally, he stood trial and the outcome was predictable.  Page 3 of the Greensboro North State from October 21, 1880 tells us:

Th.e United States Court, which had been in session for the past two weeks, adjourned on Saturday last.  Maloy Allred of Randolph County, who was convicted of counterfeiting United States nickels and dimes, was on Friday sentenced to two years imprisonment in the Albany penitentiary by Judge Dick.

As you can guess, the 1880 census shows Maloy as a Prisoner in the Randolph County jail.  Maloy’s youngest children were living in their grandparent’s house (Maloy’s parents Jesse & Alsey Allred both deceased in 1880) near the home of close family friends Peter and Letitia Freeman who were, no doubt, helping to raise them. 

Maloy returned to Randolph County after serving his time in prison.  The 1900 census shows him living in Clay Township, Guilford County, NC where he was working as a Shoemaker.  Page 3 of The Randolph Bulletin from February 14, 1907 tells us he remained in touch with at least some of his children:

            Maloy Allred passed here last Saturday on his way to Franklinville to visit his son Pete

Maloy disappears from all records after 1907.  His grave has not been found but he most likely is buried at Shiloh United Methodist Church in northeast Randolph County.  His parents, Jesse and Alsey Allred, and other family members are buried there along with both of his wives.  Although there are no church or other records to prove it, there is an unmarked grave between Barbara and Rachel’s graves where Maloy is most likely buried.   I wonder if he is causing as much mischief in “the Great Beyond” as he did on Earth