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The 1920’s and 30’s - Difficult Times for Blacks in America

Powerful Essays
The 1920’s and 30’s - Difficult Times for Blacks in America

The 1920’s and 30’s were some troublesome times for many blacks living in the United States. Even though they were free men, a lot of blacks were still treated like slaves. They were subject to unfair trials, beatings, lynchings, the presumption of guilty before trial, and were also least in priority to whites. Harper Lee also shows these same acts of prejudice in her book To Kill A Mockingbird.

It was much easier for a white man to go on trial than a colored man. In 1918, white troops from Illinois, in broad daylight, under the eyes of tens of thousands of people, shot, wounded and killed over one hundred Negroes without any reasonable or apparent provocation from the Negroes. No white soldier was even apprehended or tried in court for this act. Shortly after, Negro troops taunted by abuses, and provoked by prejudice were alleged to have “shot up the town of Houston”, killing a few people. The Negro soldiers were tried; the verdict was withheld from public; they were denied the right of appeal, and were hustled to the scaffold (Messenger 96). This example shows how the whites were by far favored over the blacks in the court of law. Also the quote “There is one law for the white man in this country and another for the black man”, shows how the courts were unfair (Messenger 96). During this time period all of the juries had to consist of white males. Most of the white males were prejudice. So, no matter what the evidence would say, the prejudice would take over and the thought that “all blacks are bad” would come in to play in the verdict. It would almost be dishonorable for a white man to not vote a black man guilty, no matter what the evidence poin...

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... Herbert. Vol. 2. Secaus: Citadel Press, Inc., 1973. 512-516

Hodges, Aimee and Strenth, Rob KKK Page. 10 Mar. 2001 1928. 1-2 http://www.coe.ufl.edu/courses/edtech/vault/SS/20s/kkk/kkkpage.html>.

Lee, Harper. To Kill A Mockingbird. Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott Company, 1960

Messenger, The. 1918. "A Statement of Fact On Lynching." A Documentary History of The Negro People In the United States. Ed. Aptheker, Herbert. Vol 2. Secaus: Citadel Press, Inc., 1973. 610-614

Pickens, William. "The Woman Voter Hits The Color Line." A Documentary History of the Negro People In the United States. Ed. Aptheker, Herbert. Vol. 3. New York: Carol Publishing Group, 1990. 305-309.

Walter, White. “A Statement of Fact On Lynching." A Documentary History of the Negro People In the United States. Ed. Aptheker, Herbert. Vol. 2. Secaus: Citadel Press, Inc., 1973. 610-614
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