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Skyline - Houston, Texas

Saturday, April 29, 2006

LYNCHING - MOB RULE


Both genders were lynched but black men were more often the
victims. Right, 5 were lynched at the same time.

S
Southern trees bear a strange fruit
Blood on the leaves and blood at the root
Black body swinging in the Southern breeze
Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees.

Pastoral scene from the gallant South
the bulging eyes and the twisted mouth
Scent of magnolia sweet and fresh
And the sudden smell of burning flesh.

Here is a fruit for the crows to pluck
For the rain to gather, for the wind to suck
For the sun to rot, for a tree to drop
Here is a strange and bitter crop.

***********************************
People were lynched for petty crimes like
shoplifting, or merely for the accusation
of stealing something, or sassing a white
person, being perceived as disrespectful.
****

FOR ARTICLE ON HISTORY OF PRACTISE OF LYNCHING, PURPOSE
GO TO:
http://www.english.uiuc.edu/maps/poets/g_l/lynching/lynching.htm

PREVALENCE OF LYNCHING, INDEX BY STATE:
http://www.nathanielturner.com/lynchingindex.htm

3 Comments:

  • At Saturday, April 29, 2006 1:58:00 PM , Blogger JBlue said...

    Such a shameful history.

    Those statistics on the lynchings by race, state, etc., were very interesting. Another good post, WA.

    Also, just yesterday, I heard something about Billie Holliday (see comment to post above).

     
  • At Saturday, April 29, 2006 5:55:00 PM , Blogger Worried said...

    Billie Holiday was a beautiful, talented woman with a tragic history. In spite of cassettes and CDs I cling to my record albums of Billie's songs. One of my favorite songs of hers is "God Bless the Child".

    Re: the stats on lynching. These are records of only those brought to authorities' attention. Many killings, especially in small towns and rural areas were not recorded, often with the collusion of local legal authorities who wanted no trouble for the home town folks.

    I am fortunate to descend from ancestors who have genetics for long life, on both maternal and paternal sides. On the maternal side, the practise of maintaining oral and written family history has been preserved to a great extent. My 96 yr.old mother's father and my mother's grandmother often told stories of the "old days" and these stories, oral histories, were passed down. Due to their long lives, some of these stories stretched far back in time, especially those tales related as told to them by their parents and grandparents. It is fascinating and sometimes deviates somewhat from official histories of the days. I regret the passing of these stories as younger generations have more interest in TV and video games than in listening to grandparents' tales. Family history and history from the perspective of the citizens who lived those times is being lost. A pity.

     
  • At Sunday, April 30, 2006 4:44:00 PM , Blogger JBlue said...

    WA, have you continued the tradition of writing those stories down? That's fascinating.

    Yes, I did wonder how many of these things went unreported. I remember stories of atrocities from the small towns down around Hell, Missouri, where I grew up.

     

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