Without trial: shocking facts about the history of lynching and bloody performances
Without trial: shocking facts about the history of lynching and bloody performances
Protests against lynching

On September 22, 1780, the first case was recorded in the United States. lynching - mass execution of a criminal without trial and investigation. Captain William Lynch subjected robbers and horse thieves to corporal punishment, after which the tradition of lynching became so widespread in the United States that in the 19th century it became widespread and practically legalized. 70% of the people lynched were black, and many of them suffered for misdemeanors. The practice of lynching has been practiced for two centuries, with the last recorded in 1981.

The "know-how" of lynching is often attributed to others, for example, Colonel Charles Lynch, a participant in the War of Independence, who organized his own court. After the court hearing, he independently passed a sentence, usually a death sentence, and immediately carried it out. If William Lynch punished black slaves, Charles Lynch sentenced deserters, looters and embezzlers to be hanged, regardless of skin color. There is a third version: the word "lynching" did not come from a proper name, but from the verb to linch - "beat with a club", "scourge".

Whoever was the legislator of this "fashion", the massacre took place according to the same scenario: the street crowd executed the criminal by hanging, burning at the stake, beating with sticks, etc. Most often, the disenfranchised black population of the United States became the victims of the lynching trial. In the period from 1882 to 1951. 4,730 cases of lynching have been officially identified, of which 3,657 concerned blacks. Only in 2005 did the US Congress apologize for its inaction in relation to the practice of lynching.

Leo Frank

One of the loudest was the lynching of Leo Frank, who was hanged by the crowd for the rape and murder of a 13-year-old girl. The suspect served as a manager at a pencil factory where Mary Fagan's body was found in a warehouse. The accusation was based on the testimony of only one witness, who saw Leo Frank going somewhere with this girl. The court sentenced the defendant to life imprisonment, but an outraged crowd rushed into the prison, pulled Frank out of there and pulled him up on a branch near the place where the girl was buried. Many of those present were photographed against the background of the hanged man. It wasn't until 1982 that it became known that another man was responsible for Mary Fagan's death. He was not punished, since he passed away 20 years ago.

As a rule, the massacres attracted thousands of spectators, turning into bloody performances. The massacre of 17-year-old black criminal Jess Washington was indicative. In 1916 he was tried for the murder of a white woman. In court, he pleaded guilty and was sentenced to death by hanging. But the angry crowd wanted to carry out the sentence right there. The convict was seized, dragged out into the street, stripped and beaten with sticks, shovels and bricks. And then, right in front of the building of the city authorities, they lit a fire and burned the murderer in front of 15 thousand people. The fingers and toes were cut off and taken away as souvenirs.

Photo of the murdered, which became a postcard for mom

Those present were happy to take pictures against the background of the executed victims. Photos of the murdered Jess Washington became postcards.A Texas guy sent this postcard to his mother, writing on the back, “This is the barbecue we had last night. I am on the left at the pillar with the cross. Your son Joe. " In the 1900s. postcards with the hanged became fashionable.

In 1919, Will Brown, a black man, was tried in Nebraska for raping a 19-year-old white girl. The crowd stormed the court, dragged the criminal out of there, immediately hanged him, then they fired a hundred bullets into the corpse, dragged him through the streets, chopped off his limbs, doused him with gasoline and burned him.

Such outrageous cases of mass atrocities became more and more. As a result, anti-lynching organizations emerged. Journalist Ida Wells conducted an investigation, during which she found that out of 728 blacks, 70% were executed for minor offenses. At the beginning of the twentieth century. a campaign against the methods of lynching began, and gradually this practice began to decline, although isolated cases of lynching in the United States were recorded until the end of the twentieth century.

Until the 1960s. lynching was practiced by racists from Ku Klux Klan - an ultra-right organization, the mention of which is still chilling

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