Tuesday, October 6, 2015

July 25, 1910: Laura Porter

Today we have what appears to be a lynching in Louisiana. Our first article comes to us through the pages of The Star-Gazette (Sallisaw, Oklahoma) dated July 29, 1910:

DIVEKEEPER MAY BE DROWNED

Indignant Citizens Believed to Have Thrown Divekeeper Into River.

Monroe, La.—What appears to have been a lynching took place here when Laura Porter, a notorious divekeeper, was quietly taken from the city jail about midnight by a party of masked men and spirited away. Since then no trace of the woman has been found.

According to the other women prisoners, she was taken out nude and that an hour later the men returned for her clothing. Just what happened to the woman may never be known, but there seems to be a well-founded belief that she was drowned in the Ouachita river, after having iron weights tied to her. The woman has g9iven the police more trouble than all the other denizens of the tenderloin together. Her most frequent offense was robbing white men, it being charged that she had two or three negro men confederates.


Our next article comes to us from the Abilene Daily Reporter (Abilene, Texas) dated July 25, 1910:


KEEPER OF A RESORT IS THROWN IN RIVER

Negro Woman Who Robbed White Men Taken From Jail by Unidentified Men. 

By Associated Press.

MONROE, July 25—A party of unidentified men broke into the city jail here early this morning and carried off Laura Porter, a negro woman prisoner, and it is presumed that she was carried to the Ouachita river, where she was thrown in and drowned.

The woman was keeper of a resort where it is reported white men were robbed on several occasions. She was jailed on a charge of assault growing out of trouble with a white man who had accused her of taking a stick pin from his shirt. No investigation of the acts of the mob has been demanded.


The same night five men in the county jail for short sentences were busted out. It is not believed to have been related, but interesting nonetheless. According to various articles, Laura Porter had been told to leave town several times. A few articles claim that she was abducted by one man. Thank you for joining me and as always, I hope I leave you with something to ponder.

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