The Fact of Southern Lawlessness

“the great migration of Negroes from the South is itself a fact that overbears all contradiction and proves conclusively that great causes must exist at the South to account for it.” These causes were crimes against “the citizenship, lives, and the personal rights of these people,” and “a faithful and honest discussion of this subject compels a reference to the darkest, bloodiest, and most shameful chapter of our political history.”55 Democrats, Northern and Southern, refused to admit to the fact of Southern lawlessness because many of the crimes had been perpetrated by Democrats, usually for their own parties advancement.

  • 55 Senate Report 593, I: pp. xxi-xxiv
  • P.254, Exodusters – Nell Irvin Painter, ISBN 0-393-00951-3



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