Bibliography

Below you will find the published sources that were used as lynching data for this website. Extreme effort was taken to stitch together these sources carefully under the following guiding principle: more recent, geographically-specific, or updated studies are allowed to correct the details given in a source that is older, more general, or less confident.

The data for the MonroeWorkToday Dataset Compilation (version 1.1) began with Tuskegee Institute, where 4,616 records are currently stored in Box 132 at the Tuskegee University Archives. This was merged with the Tolnay & Beck inventory of lynchings [1995 database] in a manual process to integrate all its additions and corrected information for the ten Southern States. The data assembly was then repeated for 62 more scholarly sources in order to include research published recently: lynching studies in other states, narrative accounts mentioned in books, as well as academic journal articles for Sicilian-Americans, Chinese-Americans, Mexican-Americans, and others. Each new source was integrated by hand to prevent the duplication of records.

Thus the MonroeWorkToday Dataset Compilation is not original research into primary documents of the 1800–1900s. Rather, it is a compilation of the most credible secondary sources that have ever been published.

 

Number of records in version 1.1: 8,045
Number of persons of color: 5,647
Number of persons of unknown race:     305
Number of persons visualized on map: 4,807
View metadata

Note: There are 5 important caveats which accompany the data.

This bibliography is also available in a traditional academic format: PDF

1
Tuskegee University Archives
Box 132.020 - database typed on paper
Guzman, Jessie (Editor)

Early definition of Lynching:

When Monroe Work first began itemizing lynchings, there was no nationally accepted definition of lynching. According to his biographer, he followed these guidelines to decide whether to count a reported death as a lynching:

• There had to be evidence that a person was killed (not just rumors); At least three people had to be involved to consider it a lynch mob;
• The person must have met their death outside the law – OR, in cases where a sheriff deputized a posse of privates citizens, he counted a lynching when the posse zealously maimed and killed the suspect rather than return him to custody as should be expected;
• If a maimed body was found with unknown circumstances, the brutality of the death would determine if he counted a lynching (that it was improbable a single murderer alone could mutilate, tie up or weight down a body in a river.)
• Mr. Work emphasized that lynching involved a mob supplanting the legal process, as he wrote himself: [See quote] The group must have acted under the pretext of serving ‘justice’ for some sort of transgression (real or not). Under this definition, Monroe Work did not classify indiscriminate racist killings as lynchings, such as the randomly hanged or dismembered victims during white supremacy riots.

1940 Tuskegee definition:

Leading activists met at Tuskegee Institute in December 1940 to agree upon a definition that could be shared among the differing perspectives of the NAACP and ASWPL:

(1) There must be legal evidence that a person was killed.
(2) That person must have met death illegally.
(3) A group of 3 or more persons must have participated in the killing.
(4) The group must have acted under the pretext of service to justice, race or tradition.

This "Tuskegee definition" became widely quoted since then. It is often still used by many (but not all) scholars today.

Tuskegee University Archives
Box contains 4616 cases of the 4743 historical tally by the Tuskegee Institute Department of Records

26 records for South Dakota are missing

geographic extent: all 48 states
2
Tuskegee University Archives
Box 132.061 - "Lynchings by County"
Guzman, Jessie (Editor)
Tuskegee University Archives
Box contains 31 cases of the 4743 historical tally by the Tuskegee Institute Dept. of Records and Research
geographic extent: all 48 states
3
Tuskegee University Archives
Box 365.001 - "Manuscript Lynching, Texas"
Raper, Arthur (Commission on Interracial Cooperation)

Typed manuscripts, Apr–May 1931

thumbnail image for Source 3.12

Read more about Arthur Raper

12 records 〈1896–1930〉
geographic extent: Brazos, Jefferson, Grayson, Fannin, Wheeler counties
5
A Festival of Violence: An Analysis of Southern Lynchings, 1882-1930
Tolnay, Stewart and E.M. Beck

Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1995
Obtained via Project HAL website, dated 2001‑11‑05

Definition of lynching: adheres as closely as possible to the 1940 Tuskegee Institute definition

book cover of Source 5

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2804 records 〈1882–1930〉
geographic extent: KY, TN, NC, SC, GA, AL, MS, AR, LA, FL
6
Lynching Beyond Dixie: American Mob Violence Outside the South
Pfeifer, Michael J. (Ed.)

Univ of Illinois Press, 2013

book cover of Source 6

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578 records 〈1837–1943〉
geographic extent:
7
Lynchings in Missouri, 1803-1981
Frazier, Harriet C.

Jefferson, NC: McFarland Publishers, 2009

book cover of Source 7

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241 records 〈1803–1981〉
geographic extent: MO
8
The Making of a Lynching Culture: Violence and Vigilantism in Central Texas 1836-1916
Carrigan, William D.

Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2004

Definition of lynching: same as 1940 Tuskegee Institute definition

book cover of Source 8

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186 records 〈1836–1916〉
geographic extent: Bell, Bosque, Coryell, Falls, Hill, Limestone, and McLennan counties TX
9
"The Lynching of Sicilian Immigrants in the American South, 1886 to 1910"
Webb, Clive

American Nineteenth Century History 3:1 (Spring 2002), pp 45-76

book cover of Source 9

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29 records 〈1886–1910〉
geographic extent: NC, MS, LA, FL
10
Lynching in Colorado, 1859-1919
Leonard, Stephen J.

Boulder: University Press of Colorado, 2002

book cover of Source 10

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195 records 〈1859–1919〉
(14 are uncertain)
geographic extent: CO
11
Judge Lynch's Court: Mob Justice in Maryland During the Age of Jim Crow
Maryland State Archives
http://msa.maryland.gov/

Visit website

39 records 〈1854–1933〉
geographic extent: MD
12
Lynchings in the West, 1850-1935
Gonzales-Day, Ken

Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2006

Definition of lynching: same as 1940 Tuskegee Institute definition

book cover of Source 12

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354 records 〈1850–1935〉
geographic extent: CA
13
Lynching in the New South: Georgia and Virginia, 1880-1930
Brundage, W. Fitzhugh

Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1993

book cover of Source 13

Find this book

544 records 〈1880–1930〉
geographic extent: GA, VA
14
Racial Violence In Kentucky, 1865-1940
Wright, George C.

Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1990

book cover of Source 14

Find this book

353 records 〈1866–1940〉
geographic extent: KY
15
Lynching in North Carolina: A History, 1865-1941
Newkirk, Vann R.

Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Company Inc, 2009

Definition of lynching: North Carolina officials defined lynching as the murder of a person who was taken from a jail or the custody of law enforcement officials. (This would exclude cases where a victim was murdered at large by a mob.)

book cover of Source 15

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169 records 〈1865–1941〉
geographic extent: NC
16
Rough Justice: Lynching and American Society, 1874-1947
Pfeifer, Michael J.

Champaign-Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2004

Definition of lynching: same as Tuskegee Institute

book cover of Source 16

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726 records 〈1836–1981〉
geographic extent: CA, IA, LA, NY, WA, WI, WY
17
"Wisconsin's Last Decade of Lynching, 1881-91: Law and Violence in the Postbellum Midwest"
Pfeifer, Michael J.

American Nineteenth Century History 6:3 (Sept 2005), pp 227-239

Definition of lynching: same as Tuskegee Institute

book cover of Source 17

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6 records 〈1881–1891〉
Discusses 1 major lynching case and clarifies 3 others from Wisconsin
geographic extent: WI
18
"Lynching in the Mid-Atlantic, 1882-1940"
Barrow, Janice Hittinger

American Nineteenth Century History 6:3 (Sept 2005), pp 241-271

Definition of lynching: same as Tuskegee Institute

book cover of Source 18

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8 records 〈1882–1940〉
Discusses several case studies from the 38 lynchings that occurred in Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.
geographic extent: DE, MD, NJ, NY, PA
20
The Wyoming Lynching of Cattle Kate, 1889
Hufsmith, George W.

Glendo, WY: High Plains Press, 1993

book cover of Source 20

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2 records 〈1889〉
geographic extent: Carbon County WY
21
Lynching to Belong: Claiming Whiteness through Racial Violence
Nevels, Cynthia Skove

College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 2007

book cover of Source 21

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6 records 〈1896–1930〉
geographic extent: Brazos County TX
22
Sundown Towns: A Hidden Dimension of American Racism
Loewen, James W.

New York: New Press, 2005

Definition of lynching: "A public murder done with the considerable support of the community." (The lynchings discussed in this book also meet the 1940 Tuskegee Institute definition)

book cover of Source 22

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23 records 〈1894–1931〉
geographic extent: Hardin County IL, Stephens County OK
23
Without Sanctuary: Lynching Photography in America
Allen, James (ed.)

Santa Fe: Twin Palms Publishers, 2000

Definition of lynching: not stated

book cover of Source 23

Find this book

74 identifiable photo records
geographic extent:
25
"History of Lynchings in Kansas"
Yost, Genevieve

Kansas Historical Quarterly 2:2 (May 1933)

book cover of Source 25

Available online

208 records 〈1850s–1932〉
These are later clarified in Source 32
geographic extent: KS
26
"Murder in Masquerade: A Commentary on Lynching and Mob Violence in North Dakota’s Past, 1882-1931"
Vyzralek, Frank

North Dakota History: Journal of the Northern Plains 57:1 (Winter 1990), pp 20-29

book cover of Source 26

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10 records 〈1882–1931〉
geographic extent: ND
27
Lynchings in Oklahoma: Vigilantism and Racism in the Twin Territories and Oklahoma, 1830-1930
Kiktode, Charles N.

Charles N. Clark Kiktode, 2008

book cover of Source 27

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147 records 〈1830–1930〉
geographic extent: OK
28
"The Chinese in Whitman County 1870-1910"
Wilbert, William F.

Bunchgrass Historian: Whitman County Historical Quarterly 10:1 (Spring 1982), pp. 20-29

book cover of Source 28

Find this article

1 narrative record 〈1888〉
geographic extent: WA
29
Driven Out: The Forgotten War Against Chinese Americans
Pfaelzer, Jean

New York: Random House, 2007

Documents victims of murder and mob violence /
not necessarily defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 29

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2 records of lynching 〈1885–1887〉
72+ victims of massacre
geographic extent: CA
30
Forgotten Dead: Mob Violence against Mexicans in the United States, 1848-1928
Carrigan, William D. & Clive Webb

New York: Oxford University Press, 2013

Definition of lynching: "the summary killing of one or more individuals by a self-appointed group without regard to established legal process." (This book avoids the term lynching in favor of ‘mob violence’ which is more certain.)

book cover of Source 30

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878 records of mob violence 〈1849–1928〉
(173 are uncertain)
geographic extent:
32
Lynchings in Kansas, 1850s-1932
Frazier, Harriet C.

Jefferson, NC: McFarland Publishers, 2015

book cover of Source 32

Find this book

241 records 〈1850s–1932〉
(2 are uncertain)
Corrects 17 records from Source 25
geographic extent: KS
33
Lynch Ropes & Long Shots: the True Story of an Old West Train Robbery
Alexander, Bob

High-Lonesome Books, 2006

Definition of lynching: (none declared, but discusses the same lynching case as recorded by Tuskegee Institute)

book cover of Source 33

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5 records 〈1884〉
geographic extent: (Gage) Silver City, NM
34
Popular Justice: A History of Lynching in America
Berg, Manfred

Chicago: Ivan R. Dee, 2011

Definition of lynching: this book narrates the periodic changes in definition of lynching from very early colonial times. This source added no new records of lynchings, but clarifies some cases of lynchings already identified.

book cover of Source 34

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(narrative cases only)
Corroborates 20 records from Source 1
Corroborates 29 victims of massacre from Source 29
35
Thirteen Loops: Race, Violence, and the last lynching in America
Hollars, B.J.

Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 2011

book cover of Source 35

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1 record 〈1981〉
36
American Lynching
Rushdy, Ashraf H. A.

New Haven: Yale University Press, 2012

Definition of lynching: "a lynching is an act of extralegal collective violence by a group alleging pursuit of summary justice."

book cover of Source 36

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(narrative cases only)
1 new record 〈1998〉
37
Blood at the Root: A Racial Cleansing in America
Phillips, Patrick

W.W. Norton & Company, 2016

book cover of Source 37

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1 record 〈1912〉
38
"Lynching in America: A Community Remembrance Project" (PDF)
Equal Justice Initiative
http://eji.org/reports

Montgomery: Equal Justice Initiative, 2012-2015

Definition of lynching: not stated

book cover of Source 38

More on EJI

17 of 3959 records are available to the public 〈1877–1950〉
39
"Lynching in America: Targeting Black Veterans" (PDF)
Equal Justice Initiative
http://eji.org/reports

Montgomery: Equal Justice Initiative, 2016

Definition of lynching: not stated

book cover of Source 39

More on EJI


40
Civil Rights and Restorative Justice Project
northeastern.edu/civilrights/
themarshallproject.org/

Boston: Northeastern Univ. School of Law, 2007-2017

Definition of lynching: not stated

Visit website

5 records are available to the public
〈1930, 1933, 1941〉
41
Clinton, Louisiana: Society, Politics, and Race Relations in a Nineteenth-Century Southern Small Town
Thompson, V. Elaine

Lafayette: Univ. of Louisiana at Lafayette Press, 2014

Definition of lynching: not stated

book cover of Source 41

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2 records 〈1875〉
42
"The Lynching of Katsu Goto"
Kubota, Gaylord C.

Hawai‘i Chronicles: Island History from the Pages of Honolulu Magazine (Bob Dye, Ed.) University of Hawai‘i Press, 1996, pp 197-214

Definition of lynching: not stated

book cover of Source 42

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1 record 〈1889〉 that precedes Hawai‘i statehood
43
The Lynching Sites Project of Memphis
Research team: Carlson, Thomas, & Laryn Bakker & Margaret Vandiver
https://lynchingsitesmem.org/

Definition of lynching: same as 1940 Tuskegee Institute definition

Visit website

36 records 〈1851–1939〉
60
Encyclopedia of American Race Riots, Vols. 1-2
Rucker, Walter & James Nathaniel Upton (Eds.)

Westport: Greenwood Press, 2007

Documents victims of race riots /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 60

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349 victims of mob violence 〈1866–1946〉
61
In Pursuit of Gold: Chinese American Miners and Merchants in the American West
Chung, Sue Fawn

Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2011

Narrates victims of massacre /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 61

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Unknown number of victims 〈1855〉
This source was not utilized in the data
62
Eastern Washington’s Past: Chinese and other Pioneers 1860-1910
Gaylord, Mary

US Dept of Agriculture, 1992

Narrates victims of massacre /
not necessarily defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 62

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Unknown number of victims 〈1875–1890〉
(Some are disputed by Source 64)
This source was not utilized in the data
63
Gold Camps & Silver Cities: Nineteenth Century Mining in Central and Southern Idaho
Wells, Merle W.

Idaho Dept. of Lands, Bureau of Mines and Geology, 2nd edition, 1983

Documents victims of massacre /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 63

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5 records 〈1879〉
64
"A Massacre at China Point" (thesis)
History Undergraduate Theses, Paper 16 (2015)
Hartman, Michael P.

Documents victims of massacre /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 64

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Corrects 25 records from Source 62 〈1880〉
65
Massacred for Gold: The Chinese in Hells Canyon
Nokes, R. Gregory

Oregon State University Press, 2009

Documents victims of massacre /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 65

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34 victims of massacre 〈1887〉
66
"All Is Not Quiet in Our Hellish County": Facts, Fiction, Politics, and Race: The Ellenton Riot of 1876;
Smith, Mark M.

The South Carolina Historical Magazine, 95:2 (Apr 1994), pp 142-155

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 66

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28-103 victims of race riot 〈1876〉
67
"Racial Violence during Reconstruction: The 1876 Riots in Charleston and Cainhoy"
Hennessey, Melinda Meek

The South Carolina Historical Magazine, 86:2 (Apr 1985), pp 100-112

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 67

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9 victims of race riot 〈1876〉
68
"The Phoenix Riot and the Memories of Greenwood County"
Wilk, Daniel Levinson

Southern Cultures 8:4 (2002), pp 29-55

Documents victims of race riot / not necessarily defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 68

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9 records 〈1898〉
69
Carnival of Fury: Robert Charles and the New Orleans Race Riot of 1900
Hair, William Ivy

Baton Rouge: Louisiana State Univ Press, 1976

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 69

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17 victims of race riot 〈1900〉
70
Rage in the Gate City: The Story of the 1906 Atlanta Race Riot
Burns, Rebecca

University of Georgia Press, 2009

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 70

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27 victims of race riot 〈1906〉
71
Race Riot at East St. Louis, July 2, 1917
Rudwick, Elliot M.

New York: Atheneum, 1972

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 71

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48+ victims of race riot 〈1917〉
72
"The Houston Mutiny and Riot of 1917"
Haynes, Robert V.

The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, 76:4 (Apr 1973), pp 418-439

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 72

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19 victims of race riot 〈1917〉
73
"The 1917 Race Riot in Chester, Pennsylvania"
Smith, Eric Ledell

Pennsylvania History: A Journal of Mid-Atlantic Studies, 75:2 (2008)

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 73

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4 victims of race riot 〈1917〉
74
"The Philadelphia Race Riot of 1918"
Franklin, Vincent P.

Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography, 99:3 (July 1975)

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 74

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3 victims of race riot 〈1918〉
75
"Lest We Forget: The Lynching of Will Brown, Omaha’s 1919 Race Riot"
Menard, Orville D.

Nebraska History, 91:1 (2010), pp 152-165

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 75

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2 victims of race riot 〈1919〉
76
Anatomy of Four Race Riots: Racial Conflict in Knoxville, Elaine (Arkansas), Tulsa, and Chicago, 1919-1921
Williams, Lee E. & Lee E. Williams II

Univ Press of Mississippi, 1972

Documents victims of race riot / not necessarily defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 76

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25-238 victims of race riots 〈1919〉
geographic extent: Elaine, AR
77
Riot and Remembrance: The Tulsa Race War and its Legacy
Hirsch, James S.

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2002

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 77

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209+ victims of race riots 〈1898–1921〉
78
Tulsa Race Riot: A Report by the Oklahoma Commission to Study the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921,
"Confirmed Deaths: A Preliminary Report"
Snow, Dr. Clyde

Oklahoma Commission, 2001, pp 109-122

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 78

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59 victims of race riot 〈1921〉
79
Like Judgment Day: The Ruin and Redemption of a Town Called Rosewood
D'Orso, Michael

New York: GP Putnam's Sons, 1996

Documents victims of race riot /
not necessarily defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 79

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8 records 〈1923〉
80
"Forgetting strength: Coffeyville, the Black freedom struggle, and the vanishing of memory" (thesis)
Newman, Geoffrey Jay

Kansas City: Univ of Missouri, 2014

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 80

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4-12 victims of race riots 〈1920, 1927〉
81
"Harlem Riot, 1935: Urban Colonialism and Early Struggles for Civil Rights" (thesis)
Oxford, Robert

May 2014

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 81

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3 victims of race riot 〈1935〉
82
"Violence in an Arsenal of Democracy: the Beaumont Race Riot, 1943"
Burran, James Albert

East Texas Historical Journal, 14:1 (1976)

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 82

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3 victims of race riot 〈1943〉
83
The Color of the Law: Race, Violence, and Justice in the Post-World War II South
O'Brien, Gail W.

Univ of North Carolina Press, 1999

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 83

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2 victims of race riot 〈1946〉
84
The Detroit Race Riot: A Study in Violence
Shogan, Robert, and Tom Craig

New York: Da Capo Press, 1964

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 84

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34 victims of race riot 〈1943〉
85
Harlem at war: the Black experience in WWII
Brandt, Nat

Syracuse: Syracuse Univ Press, 1996

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 85

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6 victims of race riot 〈1943〉
86
The Bloody Shirt: Terror After the Civil War
Budiansky, Stephen

Plume, 2008

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 86

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7 victims of race riot 〈1876〉
87
Emancipation Betrayed: The Hidden History of Black Organizing and White Violence in Florida From Reconstruction to the Bloody Election of 1920
Ortiz, Paul

Univ of California Press, 2005

Documents victims of mob violence /
not necessarily defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 87

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20 records 〈1895, 1920〉
88
A Massacre in Memphis: The Race Riot That Shook the Nation One Year After the Civil War
Ash, Stephen V.

New York: Hill and Wang, 2013

Documents victims of mob violence /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 88

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31 victims of race riot 〈1866〉
89
1898 Wilmington Race Riot Report
Umfleet, LeRae (Principal Researcher, North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources)

1898 Wilmington Race Riot Commission, 2006, pp 121-152

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 89

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21 identifiable victims of race riot 〈1898〉
90
The Draft Riots in New York, July, 1863
Barnes, David M.

Applewood Books, 1863

Documents victims of race riot /
not defined as lynchings

book cover of Source 90

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12 identifiable victims of race riot 〈1863〉

Other works consulted:

100
Recorder of the Black Experience: A biography of Monroe Nathan Work
McMurry, Linda O.

Baton Rouge: Lousiana State Univ Press, 1985

book cover of Source 100

Read an excerpt

The only published biography of Mr. Work
101
Tuskegee University Archives
Box 97.001 - Papers of Monroe N. Work
Work, Monroe
Tuskegee University Archives
Autobiographical writings, correspondences, and newspaper articles of Monroe Work
102
"Microclimates of Racial Meaning: Historical Racial Violence and Environmental Impacts"
Ward, Geoff

Wisconsin Law Review 2016:3, pp 575-626

book cover of Source 101

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Examines the historical efforts of Ida Wells and Monroe Work in context to the many forms of racial violence
103
"Unsung Hero: Monroe Nathan Work (Theologian, Social Scientist, and Crusader for Social Justice and Civil Rights)"
Carter, Vivian L.

Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved 21:3 (Aug 2010 supplement), pp 3-5

book cover of Source 102

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Brief biographical sketch quoting some of Mr. Work's writing
104
Civil Rights and the Making of the Modern American State
Francis, Megan Ming

Cambridge University Press, 2014

book cover of Source 103

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A thorough history and analysis of the founding work of the NAACP
105
American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America
Woodard, Colin

Penguin Books, 2011

book cover of Source 104

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A conceptualization of distinct regions of the United States concerning their dominant cultural values, based on their historical legacies

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