The Rosewood Massacre

   

On January 1, 1923 a massacre was carried out in the small, predominantly black town of Rosewood in Central Florida. The massacre was instigated by the rumor that a white woman, Fanny Taylor, had been sexually assaulted by a black man in her home in a nearby community.  A group of white men, believing this rapist to be a recently escaped convict named Jesse Hunter who was hiding in Rosewood, assembled to capture this man. Prior this event a series of incidents had stirred racial tensions within Rosewood.  The next day the white mob burned the Carrier home before joining with a group of 200 men from surrounding towns who had heard erroneously that a black man had killed two white men.  As night descended the mob attacked the town, slaughtering animals and burning buildings. At the end of the carnage only two buildings remained standing, a house and the town general store. Many of the black residents of Rosewood who fled to the swamps were evacuated on January 6 by two local train conductors, John and William Bryce. Other black residents of Rosewood fled to Gainesville and to northern cities.  As a consequence of the massacre, Rosewood became deserted. The initial report of the Rosewood incident presented less than a month after the massacre claimed there was insufficient evidence for prosecution.  Thus no one was charged with any of the Rosewood murders.  In 1994, however, as the result of new evidence and renewed interest in the event, the Florida Legislature passed the Rosewood Bill which entitled the nine survivors to $150,000 dollars each in compensation.

 

This information is from blackpast.org, for more information on the Rosewood Massacre, click HERE.


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