On April 22, 1896, Martin Begnaud was brutally murdered in his general store in Scott Station, Louisiana. He was bound, gagged, blindfolded, stabbed more than fifty times, and robbed of over $5,000. Ten months later, after one of the most extensive manhunts in nineteenth-century Louisiana, public shock and outrage reemerged when two teenage brothers from France, Ernest and Alexis Blanc, were arrested for the crime. William Arceneaux sets the story of Begnaud's murder, the Blanc brothers' trial, and the media circus surrounding it all against the backdrop of Acadian histor—”from the 1604 establishment of a French colony in the Canadian maritime provinces to the eventual creation of a "New Acadia"in South Louisiana. By intertwining a suspenseful account of this heinous crime with an exploration of the citizens it affected, No Spark of Malice provides insight into a fascinating people, place, and era.
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