Bettye Gardner remembers her family telling her the tragic story of William Henderson Foote, her granduncle who was lynched in Yazoo City, Mississippi, in 1883.
In the early 20th century, the people of Waco dubbed their city the “Athens of Texas.” Waco, however, had another side.
Although lynch mobs primarily targeted Black people, the first effort to pass a federal anti-lynching law had nothing to do with African Americans. Instead, it followed the 1891 lynchings of 11 Italians in New Orleans.
On Nov. 4, 1883, a white mob, fearful of Black political power and riled up by false newspaper narratives, took to the streets of Danville three days before the election and used a fist fight between a white man and a Black man as justification for a violent massacre.