1921 Tulsa race mas­sacre sur­vivors start speak­ing up

Tulsa World - - Front Page - By Tim Stan­ley • Tulsa World

Start­ing out as a land ac­qui­si­tion by black en­tre­pre­neur O.W. Gur­ley, Tulsa's Green­wood Dis­trict grew in just more than a decade into one of the most thriv­ing hubs of black-owned busi­ness in the coun­try.

That all changed over a night­mar­ish 48 hours in 1921. The Tulsa race mas­sacre re­duced much of “Black Wall Street,” as the dis­trict was known, to charred ru­ins, while of­fi­cially leav­ing 36 res­i­dents dead and thou­sands more home­less.

Many would stay on and re­build. But it would be decades be­fore the event was openly dis­cussed in Tulsa or taught in its schools. When the ag­ing sur­vivors even­tu­ally or­ga­nized to pur­sue jus­tice and repa­ra­tions, it helped raise long-over­due aware­ness of what re­mains one of the worst episodes of racial vi­o­lence in Amer­i­can his­tory.

STEPHEN PINGRY/Tulsa World file

Sur­vivors of the 1921 Tulsa race mas­sacre ap­pear at a 2003 news con­fer­ence with their lawyer, Charles Ogle­tree.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.