Moore’s Ford lynchings and anti-lynching movement resources in the DLG

Stetson Kennedy's handwritten notes on the Moore's Ford lynching in Monroe.
Stetson Kennedy’s handwritten notes on the Moore’s Ford lynching in Monroe. Lynching, 1936-1949; undated. Local identification number: L1979-37_1514_40. Stetson Kennedy papers, Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library.

July 25 is the seventieth anniversary of the Moore’s Ford lynchings, where George W. Dorsey, Mae Murray Dorsey, Roger Malcom and Dorothy Malcom, all Walton County sharecroppers, were killed by a white mob near Moore’s Ford Bridge in Monroe, Georgia. The lynching was reported in the national press, and was investigated by both the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and the FBI. Despite these efforts to seek justice, no one was ever indicted for the crime.

On July 25, the Moore’s Ford Movement is hosting the 12th annual reenactment of the lynchings that begins at 10 a.m. at First African Baptist Church in Monroe, and travels to the Moore’s Ford bridge.

There are numerous resources in the DLG, the New Georgia Encyclopedia, and the Civil Rights Digital Library about people who worked for the anti-lynching movement.

Here are a few:

Lynching, 1936-1949; undated

Clippings and notes regarding lynching collected and written by investigative reporter and labor activist Stetson Kennedy.  Page 30 of the PDF includes Kennedy’s handwritten notes on the Moore’s Ford lynching in Monroe.

 

Commission on Interracial Cooperation

New Georgia Encyclopedia article about the Commission on Interracial Cooperation (CIC), founded in Atlanta in 1919, which worked until its merger with the Southern Regional Council in 1944 to oppose lynching, mob violence, and peonage and to educate white southerners concerning the worst aspects of racial abuse.

 

Oral history interview with Willie Snow Ethridge, December 15, 1975

During the 1920s and 1930s, Ethridge was actively involved in the anti-lynching movement. Working primarily within the Association of Southern Women for the Prevention of Lynching, Ethridge both wrote and spoke about lynching and its implications for African Americans and poor whites.

Here is an excerpt from her oral history interview where she discusses working for the anti-lynching movement in the 1920s and 1930s.

 

Oral history interview with Clark Foreman, November 16, 1974

This interview covers three separate conversations with Clark Foreman regarding his career in race relations, public service, and politics. His childhood in Georgia and his travels in Europe led to his work for the Commission on Interracial Cooperation in Atlanta. Foreman witnessed a lynching while he attended University of Georgia. The event seemed horrific and barbaric to him and to his family members. Here is an excerpt from his oral history interview where he discusses witnessing the lynching.

 

Oral History Interview with Broadus Mitchell, August 14 and 15, 1977

This interview with economic historian John Broadus Mitchell , who, while teaching at Johns Hopkins University in the 1930s came under the administration’s scrutiny when he publicly spoke out about a lynching in Salisbury, Maryland. Here is an excerpt about that experience.

 

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Remembering Horace T. Ward

WSB-TV newsfilm clip of a panel of African American leaders including Georgia state senator Leroy Johnson, Reverend J. D. Grier and attorneys Horace T. Ward and William H. Alexander explaining recent demands to the Board of Education, Atlanta, Georgia, 1967 September 25, WSB-TV newsfilm collection, reel 1411, 00:00/05:40, Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection, The University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Ga, as presented in the Digital Library of Georgia.
WSB-TV newsfilm clip of a panel of African American leaders including Georgia state senator Leroy Johnson, Reverend J. D. Grier and attorneys Horace T. Ward and William H. Alexander explaining recent demands to the Board of Education, Atlanta, Georgia, 1967 September 25, WSB-TV newsfilm collection, reel 1411, 00:00/05:40, Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection, The University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Ga, as presented in the Digital Library of Georgia.

United States District Court Judge Horace T. Ward died on Saturday, April 23.

In 1950, Horace T. Ward became the first African American to challenge the racially discriminatory practices at the University of Georgia (UGA).

Although the all-white UGA School of Law rejected Ward’s application and a federal court subsequently upheld the university’s decision, Ward’s challenge to the university’s segregationist policies began a legal process that would eventually bear fruit in 1961 when Ward returned to Georgia to assist Donald Hollowell and Constance Baker Motley in their renewed efforts to desegregate UGA. On January 6, 1961, Judge William A. Bootle ordered UGA to admit two African American students, Hamilton E. Holmes and Charlayne A. Hunter,  ending 175 years of segregation at the university.

Ward served as a partner of the law firm of Hollowell, Ward, Moore, and Alexander during the early 1960s. From 1965-1974, he served in the Georgia state senate. U.S president Jimmy Carter appointed him to a federal judgeship on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia in 1979, which made Ward the first African American ever to sit on the federal bench in Georgia.

The Civil Rights Digital Library includes numerous archival collections, reference resources, and educator resources that refer to Horace Ward, they are available at:

http://crdl.usg.edu/people/w/ward_horace_t_horace_taliaferro_1927/

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