A Jury of Her Peers

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“A Jury of Her Peers” chronicles the discovery of and subsequent investigation into John Wright’s murder. The story begins on a cold windy day in Dickson County with Martha Hale, being abruptly called to ride to a crime scene with Lewis Hale, her husband; Sheriff Peters, the county sheriff; and Mrs. Peters, the sheriff’s wife. She rushes out to join them in the buggy and the group sets off. They arrive at the scene of the crime, the Wright’s lonesome-looking house. Immediately Mrs. Hale exhibits feeling of guilt for not visiting her friend Minnie Foster since Foster had married and become Mrs. Wright (the dead man's wife) twenty years prior. Once the whole group is safely inside the house, Mr. Hale is asked to describe, to the county attorney, George Henderson, what he had seen and experienced the day prior. Despite the serious circumstances, he delivers his story in a long-winded and poorly thought-out manner, tendencies he struggles to avoid throughout. The story begins with Mr. Hale venturing to Mr. Wright’s house to convince Wright to get a telephone. Upon entering the house he finds Mrs. Wright in a delirious state and comes to learn that Mr. Wright has allegedly been strangled. The women's curious nature and very peculiar attention to minute details allow them to find evidence of Mrs. Wright's guilt and of her provocations and motives, while the men are unable to procure any evidence. The women find the one usable piece of evidence: the dead bird in the box. It's stated that Minnie used to love to sing and her husband took that away from her. But now finding her bird is dead, it is evident Mrs. Wright killed her husband. The women, finding justification in Mrs. Wright’s actions, go about hiding what they find from the men. In the end, their obstruction of evidence will seemingly prevent a conviction. The story ends here, and does not move into the occurrences after they leave the house.
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