Sheriff Hardin Harvey Vickery, Sr.

Sheriff Hardin Harvey Vickery, Sr.

Douglas County Sheriff's Office, Missouri

End of Watch Saturday, March 8, 1879

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Hardin Harvey Vickery, Sr.

Sheriff Hardin Vickery was shot and killed as he attempted to arrest the former sheriff of Douglas County for a murder he had committed in Arkansas in 1872.

A warrant had been issued for the former sheriff almost two years earlier, but it could not be enforced while he was still in office. When the former sheriff was defeated in his bid for re-election by Hardin Vickery in 1878 Arkansas authorities began pushing for the warrant to be served.

Sheriff Vickery and a posse of twelve men went to the former sheriff's home in the Fox Creek area approximately 15 miles outside of Ava to arrest him. Seeing their approach, the man barricaded himself in his house and claimed that he would have to be taken by force. Sheriff Vickery, foreseeing that the situation would become violent, urged the man's wife to remove herself and her children from the home. The woman refused and the former sheriff opened fire on the posse. The posse returned fire but stopped when they realized that the house might be too durable for their bullets to penetrate it.

Sheriff Vickery decided to approach the house to get a closer look at its construction and, as he was examining the structure, the man suddenly fired at him from inside the home. Sheriff Vickery was struck in the chest and killed instantly.

The posse immediately returned fire and killed the subject. The man's young child was also killed in the exchange.

Sheriff Vickery was a Union Army veteran of the Civil War and had served with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office for just only four months. He was survived by his wife and three children.


  • Age 36
  • Tour 4 months
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Shot and Killed

murder suspect, warrant service

Most Recent Reflection

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I asked one of my Facebook groups and was told he is buried on Water Tower Hill.

K. Rhodes
Local resident

March 14, 2021

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