The Death Of Toni Jo Henry Essay

The Death Of Toni Jo Henry Essay

Length: 1225 words (3.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Toni Jo Henry
From 1608-2002, Louisiana has only executed 658 (ProCon). There have been several different methods from hanging, the electric chair, and now lethal injection. On November 28, 1942, the first woman was executed by the electric chair in the state of Louisiana. Her name was Toni Jo Henry and she suffered in many ways throughout her life. From losing her mother and enduring an abusive father, to working in a brothel where men used her as they pleased, to having her husband locked up in jail with no way out. Does that excuse her killing an innocent man?
and through the loss of her mother and enduring her abusive father, she ended up in a brothel where she met her husband. Through marrying him, she stuck by his side even through murder. That brought on committing murder herself and ended in her death.
Toni Jo Henry was born Annie Beatrice McQuiston in Shreveport, Louisiana on January 3, 1916. Her parents were James Leslie Mcquiston and Ella Beatrice Mcquiston. She was the third of five children. Her mother died of tuberculosis when she was six years old (Toni). She worked in a macaroni factory at the age of thirteen. After that she worked in a brothel, a house for prostitutes where men go to have sex (Clark). “I was awful ashamed of the things I did there,” she said. “But they wouldn’t let me quit. It’s that kind of a racket.” (Gribben). Toni Jo was a popular girl there because she was very pretty. She was small and petite with jet black hair (Gribben).
In 1939 she met Claude ‘Cowboy’ Henry. He was a not-so-lucky prized fighter who would go to the brothel Toni Jo worked at. They fell in love and got married on November 25, 1939. They honeymooned in California and Claude helped Toni off of her ...

... middle of paper ...

...make something of your life”. According to a prison officer, Claude was crying and Toni Jo was cheerful and bright (Clark). On the day of the execution, she was very sad because she found out they had to shave her head. They allowed her to wear a scarf on her head and she wore a black dress with black pumps. She descended the stairs with Father Wayne and they let her hold a crucifix in her hand. They asked her if she had any last words and she replied, “No”. They flipped the switch and Toni Jo Henry died at 12:12 p.m. at age 26. Her last request was that they let keep the crucifix in her left hand at burial. Father Wayne officiated her funeral and she is buried in Lake Charles today. As for Burks, his execution happened on March 23, 1943 despite the fact that Toni Jo tried to take all of the blame for the murder. He is buried in an unmarked grave (Clark).

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay about Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye

- Communities shape the way we think about ourselves and the people around us. They are a reflection of the ideas, beliefs and socio-economic realities that we share as a collective whole. Who we interact with and how they react to us can foster a sense of belonging or lead to rejection and isolation. In Toni Morrison's novel The Bluest Eye, we see a community affected by poverty, institutionalized racism, sexual abuse and the influences it has on a little girl named Pecola Breedlove and how it shapes her own self image, as she is constantly reinforced with negative messages about herself and her family everywhere she goes....   [tags: Pride and Pecola, character analysis]

Strong Essays
1268 words (3.6 pages)

Analysis Of Toni Morrison And The Red Convertible By Louise Erdrich Essay

- American soldiers have battled in conflicts they were involuntarily forced into by the draft, only to recognize the war formed within their minds would never truly cease and become a destructive syndrome hampering their ability to cope with society. In 1919, by Toni Morrison and The Red Convertible, by Louise Erdrich, Shadrack and Henry Lamartine are both attempted to reintroduce themselves into society, but suffered extreme psychological damage implanted by their experiences in military conflict....   [tags: Vietnam War, Guerrilla warfare]

Strong Essays
1027 words (2.9 pages)

The Bluest Eye Essay

- The Bluest Eye The major characters in The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison were Pecola Breedlove, Cholly Breedlove, Claudia MacTeer, and Frieda MacTeer. Pecola Breedlove is an eleven-year-old black girl around whom the story revolves. Her innermost desire is to have the "bluest" eyes so that others will view her as pretty in the end that desire is what finishes her, she believes that God gives her blue eyes causing her insanity. She doesn't have many friends other than Claudia and Frieda....   [tags: Toni Morrison]

Free Essays
1343 words (3.8 pages)

Should The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison Be Considered a Great American Novel?

- I believe that The Bluest Eye is a very good piece of literature, but it should not be considered a “Great American Novel”. I do believe that the novel is eye-opening to the horrors of being an African-American child during the 1940’s, but that these awful situations are not enough to make it a “Great American Novel”. This novel is supposed to become reality for the reader, which is successfully done, except when there are coincidences that occur seemingly to drive whatever plots, if any, that the novel contains....   [tags: african american, pecola, boring]

Strong Essays
787 words (2.2 pages)

The Sacred Language of Toni Morrison Essay

- The Sacred Language of Toni Morrison         Toni Morrison makes a good point when, in her acceptance speech upon receiving the Nobel Prize in Literature, she says, “Narrative . . . is . . . one of the principal ways in which we absorb knowledge” (7).  The words we use and the way in which we use them is how we, as humans, communicate to each other our thoughts, feelings, and actions and therefore our knowledge of the world and its peoples.  Knowledge is power.  In this way, our language, too, is powerful....   [tags: Toni Morrison]

Strong Essays
1817 words (5.2 pages)

The Ghost of Toni Morrison's Beloved Essay examples

- The Ghost of Beloved One of the most engaging arguments about Toni Morrison’s book Beloved is centered around the nature of the girl Beloved. The argument is whether Beloved is simply a young woman who herself had suffered the horrors of slavery, or the ghost of Sethe’s crawling already. baby girl. The evidence shows that Morrison intended Beloved to be the ghost of the crawling already. girl. It has been said that there are basically two reasons why ghosts walk: they have either unfinished business to attend to of have died a very violent death....   [tags: Toni Morrison Beloved Essays]

Strong Essays
1501 words (4.3 pages)

Essay about Memory in Toni Morrison's Beloved

- Memory in Toni Morrison's Beloved     Memories are works of fiction, selective representations of experiences actual or imagined. They provide a framework for creating meaning in one's own life as well as in the lives of others. In Toni Morrison's novel Beloved, memory is a dangerous and debilitating faculty of human consciousness. Sethe endures the tyranny of the self imposed prison of memory. She expresses an insatiable obsession with her memories, with the past. Sethe is compelled to explore and explain an overwhelming sense of yearning, longing, thirst for something beyond herself, her daughter, her Beloved....   [tags: Toni Morrison Beloved memorybel]

Strong Essays
803 words (2.3 pages)

Rememory in Toni Morrison's Beloved Essay

- Rememory in Toni Morrison's Beloved To survive, one must depend on the acceptance and integration of what is past and what is present. In her novel Beloved, Toni Morrison carefully constructs events that parallel the way the human mind functions; this serves as a means by which the reader can understand the activity of memory. "Rememory" enables Sethe, the novel's protagonist, to reconstruct her past realities. The vividness that Sethe brings to every moment through recurring images characterizes her understanding of herself....   [tags: Toni Morrison Beloved Essays]

Strong Essays
1241 words (3.5 pages)

Paradise by Toni Morrison Essay

- Paradise by Toni Morrison Would you be embarrassed if you were in love with an ugly person, and were very attractive yourself. In the world today, appearance is of most importance and if you love an ugly person when you are beautiful, you are seen as dating below yourself....   [tags: Paradise Toni Morrison]

Free Essays
871 words (2.5 pages)

Toni Morrison's Sula Essay

- Toni Morrison's Sula In the book Sula by Toni Morrison, Morrison’s ambiguous link between good, evil, and guilt, she is able to show that these terms are relative to each other and often occur mutually. In her comparison of good and evil, Sula states that "Being good to somebody is just like being mean to somebody. Risky. You don't get nothing for it" (145). Good and evil are being compared as if they are equal and that is how the book is structured. For instance, Eva's burning of Plum is a complex conjunction of motherly love and practicality and cannot be described as simply being a good act or a bad one....   [tags: Toni Morrison Sula Essays]

Free Essays
526 words (1.5 pages)