Manage episode 325447196 series 2885711
BlackFacts.com presents the black fact of the day for April 13.
The Colfax Massacre.
During the Reconstruction era following the American Civil War, the South was in turmoil.
Many Republican politicians, who controlled the federal government, wanted equality for African Americans.
In 1872 a bitterly contested election for Louisiana governor left both Republicans and Democrats declaring their candidate the winner.
Federal troops and a Black militia supported the Republicans, while the Democrats formed a militia made up of local white residents including members of the Ku Klux Klan and other white supremacist organizations.
A Black armed militia unit occupied the Grant Parish courthouse to prevent the Democrats from overthrowing the local Republican government.
The white militia surrounded the courthouse, fired a cannon, and forced a Black man to set the courthouse on fire.
As many as 150 African Americans and three white people died during and immediately after the incident.
The Colfax Massacre was more or less ignored until the 1920s, when local officials raised a monument honoring the three white men who died in the attack on the courthouse, which called the massacre a “riot.”
The marker was removed on May 15, 2021, for eventual placement in a museum.
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