White mobs and individuals lynched at least 2,000 more Black Americans than previously documented, according to a new report from the Equal Justice Initiative. The report, released Tuesday, documents confirmed lynchings during the Reconstruction era, from 1865 to 1876, after the end of the Civil War and Black Americans’ emancipation from slavery. The group’s previous report on the subject, from 2015, detailed 4,500 racial terror lynchings from 1877 to 1950 — adding up to nearly 6,500 confirmed lynchings of Black people in the U.S. from 1865 to 1950. EJI notes that thousands more lynchings “may never be documented,” defining lynchings as when Black people were “attacked, sexually assaulted and terrorized by white mobs and individuals” who were largely “shielded from arrest and prosecution.”
A Ferguson activist claims that her son was recently killed by lynching. Melissa McKinnies took to Facebook to share news of her son Danye Jones‘ death. The 24-year-old, who would’ve turned 25 on November 19, was found dead by his mother on October 17. In a since-deleted Facebook post, McKinnies shared graphic images of Jones hanging from a tree. The images have since been shared on social media. Unverified accounts from social media accounts claim that police have ruled Jones’ death a suicide. (Both hyperlinks include the graphic images of Jones. Viewer discretion is advised.) McKinnies participated in numerous protests in Ferguson following Michael Brown‘s death. She was a former member of Ferguson grassroots activist group Lost Voices according to ColorLines.
JONESBORO, Ga.—I boarded the Gone With the Wind Tour bus outside the train depot built in 1867 to replace the depot burned during the Civil War. The building now houses the Road to Tara Museum. It has displays of “Gone With the Wind” movie memorabilia including dolls of Mammy, played in the film by Hattie McDaniel, and the pantalettes and green hat worn by Vivien Leigh, who played Scarlett O’Hara. Rick, the bus driver, switched on the audio track, written and narrated by a local historian, Peter Bonner. We listened to the familiar story of the noble South and its “Lost Cause.” We heard about the courage of the Confederate soldiers in Jonesboro who fought gallantly on Aug. 31 and Sept. 1, 1864, in a failed effort to block the Union Army from entering Atlanta.
The National Memorial for Peace and Justice is a six-acre site that overlooks Montgomery, the state capital. It uses sculpture, art and design to give visitors a sense of the terror of lynching as they walk through a memorial square with 800 six-foot steel columns that symbolize the victims. The names of thousands of victims are engraved on columns – one for each county in the United States where a lynching took place. In Alabama alone, a reported total of 275 lynchings took place between 1871 and 1920. U.S. history books and documentaries that tell the story of lynching in the U.S. have focused on black male victims, to the exclusion of women. But women, too, were lynched – and many raped beforehand. In my book “Gender and Lynching,” I sought to tell the stories of these women and why they have been left out.
By Jessica Wang for Alternet - Recent events in Charlottesville have renewed the debate around whether to take down Confederate memorials and statues, but the latest short film from the Equal Justice Institute’s Lynching in America project shows that much more is needed to truly confront the bitter legacy of slavery and racial injustice. Abbeville chronicles the unveiling of a historical marker dedicated to the brutal death of Anthony Crawford a century ago. Lynched in the town square of Abbeville, South Carolina, Crawford was a successful African-American farmer who argued with a white merchant for a fair price for cottonseed. For his “crime,” he was publicly stabbed, shot and hanged by a white mob, and his family was subsequently run out of town. Crawford’s murder counts as just one of the 4,084 racial terror lynchings identified by EJI in 12 Southern states between the end of Reconstruction in 1877 and 1950, and yet is one of only a handful of deaths recognized today by public markers. In fact, the Abbeville memorial is one of six lynching markers erected by EJI as part of an effort to force Americans to face our history of racial terror and reshape the national narrative about race. The other five can be found in LaGrange, Georgia, and four cities in Alabama.
By Dave Zirin for The Nation - Richard Collins III was about to graduate from Bowie State University on Tuesday. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the US Army. He was airborne certified. He was a son, a friend, and active in his church. To Sean Urbanski, a University of Maryland student, he was black. At around 3 am on Saturday, May 20, Collins waited for an Uber ride along with two friends who were students at UMD at an on-campus bus stop. Urbanski walked up to them, and, according to witnesses, said, “Step left, step left if you know what’s best for you.” Collins simply replied, “No.” He stood his ground. Urbanski then stabbed him in the chest and fled the scene. Collins died at the hospital. Make no mistake about it—this was a lynching, a lynching committed by a UMD student. A lynching 10 minutes from my damn house. Urbanski, as has been widely reported, is a member of a racist Facebook group called “Alt-Reich: Nation.” But that’s also not all he is. He’s a college student who grew up in the leafy suburban environs of Severna Park, Maryland. He hung out at Adele H. Stamp Student Union, studied at McKeldin Library, and wore his Baltimore Ravens gear around campus. He was not an interloper or an outsider. He is a homegrown terrorist who grew out of the soil of this college campus
By Staff of the Equal Justice Initiative. The Equal Justice Initiative plans to build a national memorial to victims of lynching and open a museum that explores African American history from enslavement to mass incarceration. Both the museum and memorial will open in Montgomery, Alabama, in 2017. From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration will be situated within 150 yards of one of the South's most prominent slave auction sites and the Alabama River dock and rail station where tens of thousands of enslaved black people were trafficked. The museum will contain high-tech exhibits, artifacts, recordings, and films, as well as comprehensive data and information on lynching and racial segregation. The museum will connect the history of racial inequality with contemporary issues of mass incarceration, excessive punishment, and police violence. The Memorial to Peace and Justice will sit on six acres of land in Montgomery and become the nation's first national memorial to victims of lynching.
By Janaya Khan for The Real News Network - Welcome to the Real News Network. I'm Janaya Khan. If you've been watching the news, if you've been having conversations around the dinner table, what you've heard and what you've seen in the world with Black Lives Matter having uprisings across the States, with five police officers in Dallas who were recently shot and Obama's speech on that, I think we're all wondering, what's next?