Deputy U.S. Marshal John D. Kirby

Deputy U.S. Marshal John D. Kirby

United States Department of Justice - United States Marshals Service, U.S. Government

End of Watch Thursday, March 5, 1896

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John D. Kirby

Deputy U.S. Marshal John Kirby was shot and killed in Holly Springs, South Carolina, while he and several other U.S. Marshals were bringing two men they had arrested to jail.

The Marshals had arrested the two adult brothers for operating an illegal still in the upper part of the county. They were transporting them to jail when the group stopped at a church in Holly Springs for a break. Deputy Marshal Kirby's two sons, who were also deputy marshals, had accompanied them and went to a nearby millpond to hunt ducks and a third deputy marshal had continued driving a second wagon loaded with the seized liquor.

The two prisoners were left with Deputy Marshal Kirby and one other deputy marshal. When Deputy Marshal Kirby set his rifle down to reach into their wagon one of the prisoners grabbed it and shot him in the head, killing him. The man then attempted to shoot the other deputy marshal but the rifle had no more ammunition in it. Both brothers fled the area.


  • Age Not available
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Location South Carolina
  • Weapon Rifle; Winchester
  • Offender Not available

alcohol violation, prisoner custody

Most Recent Reflection

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DUSM Kirby,
On today, the 125th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for our Country.


United States Border Patrol

March 5, 2021

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