Feb. 29, 2020

The Forgotten History of America’s Worst Racial Massacre

As I end February 2020, Black History Month, I will discuss the single most documented savage act of white mob violence on blacks in our black history. We’ve read about the events of Elaine, Arkansas multiple times on The Blackman Read Aloud Hour. Before Greenwood there was this act of savagery. During a period of time when open hostilities against our ancestors simply because of the color of their skins.

The Blackman Read Aloud Hour Project
Uncovering Our Black Experience: Elaine Arkansas Massacre
Hundreds of black citizens were killed in Elaine, Ark., a century ago + 1 year

By Nan Elizabeth Woodruff
Dr. Woodruff is a historian and the author of “American Congo: The African American Freedom Struggle in the Delta.”

In the year 1919 in this nation, multiple events of white mob violence occurred during that hate-enraged year of black oppression. The worst of the Red Summer acts occurred in the small town of Elaine, Arkansas in the Fall, 1919. Today, I will be reading from an article that appeared in the New York Times on September 30, 2019, which looks at this act of barbaric proportions a century later. This was by far the most vicious act of race induced rage inflicted on black African Americans after the Civil War. Listen closely to the details that Dr. Woodruff pieced together because it will outline how government forces solicited the aid of the white mob to silence the voices of blacks who were demanding​ simple human and civil rights.