Saturday, April 23, 2016

Letter to the Editor: The Pittsburgh Press

Today I am featuring a letter to the editor of The Pittsburgh Press (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) found in the January 4, 1928 edition from the Principal of the Tuskegee Institute:


Editor of The Press:

I sent you the following concerning lynchings for the past year as compiled by Tuskegee institute in the department of records and research. I find there were 16 persons lynched in 1927. This is 14 less than the number, 30, for 1926; one less than the number, 17, for 1925; the same number, 16, as for 1924, and 17 less than the number, 33, for 1923. Twelve of the persons lynched were taken from the hands of the law, six from jails and six from officers of the law outside of jails. Four of the persons were burned to death; two were put to death and then their bodies burned.

There were 42 instances in which officers of the law prevented lynchings. Eight of these were in northern states and 34 in southern states. In 24 of the cases the prisoners were removed or the guards augmented, or other precautions taken. In 18 other instances armed force was used to repel the would-be lynchers. Sixty-eight persons, 15 white and 53 Negroes, were thus saved from death at the hands of mobs.

All of the persons lynched were Negroes. The offenses charged were:  Murder, 7; attempted murder, 2; rape, 2; attempted rape, 3; improper conduct, 1; charge not reported, 1.

The states in which lynchings occurred and the number in each state are as follows:  Arkansas, 3; Kentucky, 1; Louisiana, 1; Mississippi, 7; Missouri, 11; Tennessee, 2; Texas, 1.


Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute.

Thank you for joining me and as always, I hope I leave you with something to ponder.

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