'Murder in Coweta County' producer to speak

Two nights of planned activities will take place July 10-11 as the city of Newnan and Coweta County partner to celebrate the story of “Murder in Coweta County,” which aired on CBS television network 31 years ago.

According to Coweta County events services coordinator Tray Baggarly, on July 10 at 7 p.m. in the historic 1904 Courthouse in downtown Newnan, one of the movie’s producers, Dick Atkins, will give a presentation and talk about what went into turning local author Margaret’s Anne Barnes’ book into a made-for-TV movie starring Andy Griffith and Johnny Cash. In addition, several local residents will display memorabilia they have associated with the movie, and some who were extras in the production will talk about their experiences.

The next evening, July 11, at 7 p.m. at the Carnegie Library on the Court Square, Atkins will talk about the production of the movie, followed by a screening of the movie.

“Murder in Coweta County” is the true story of a brutal murder that took place in 1948 and pitted John Wallace of Meriwether County against Coweta County Sheriff Lamar Potts. The trial was the first in Georgia in which a white man was convicted on the testimony of black witnesses. The trial was held in the second floor courtroom at the Coweta County courthouse, and the guilty verdict was read there on June 18, 1948 – 65 years ago this week. 

Light refreshments will follow both of the July events and there is no charge to attend. 

For more information, contact the Coweta County Convention & Visitors Bureau at 770-254-2627 or the Carnegie Library at 770-683-1347.

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