Posts tagged with "dr. steven ash"

The 1866 Memphis Massacre Remains a Dark Stain on American History

This historical account is yet another node of reflection of what Black folks have had to endure in the making of America under the brutality of slavery, and as Freemen. This is why the call for reparations continues to echo across the land, and rolls over mountains,  even crossing oceans and seas for all mankind to hear. The calls for reparations will never die, just like the memory and the legacy of our enslaved ancestors who built America without ever being paid for it. 

Today marks a tragic and unjust moment in American history, as we remember the racial brutality and sexual violence inflicted upon newly freed enslaved African Americans. The 1866 Memphis massacre, also known as the Memphis Riots, was a three-day racial massacre in Memphis, Tennessee, from May 1, 1866 to May 3, 1866, during the Reconstruction Era.


The massacre occurred in the context of widespread social and political tensions following the American Civil War and the abolition of slavery. African Americans in Memphis had made significant gains in terms of political and economic power during Reconstruction. They had won the right to vote and hold office, and many African Americans had established businesses and acquired property.

On May 1, 1866, a white mob attacked a group of African American veterans who were gathered at a polling place to vote in the municipal election. The mob shot and killed several African Americans and wounded others. The violence escalated over the next two days, as white mobs looted and burned African American homes and businesses and killed dozens of African Americans.


The massacre shocked the nation and led to widespread condemnation. The federal government sent troops to Memphis to restore order, and President Andrew Johnson appointed a commission to investigate the violence. The commission concluded that the massacre had been a deliberate and organized attack by white supremacists.

Despite the federal investigation, no one was ever held accountable for the massacre. The white perpetrators were never punished, and the African American victims received no compensation for their losses.

The 1866 Memphis massacre remains a dark stain on American history. It is a reminder of the racism and violence that African Americans faced during Reconstruction and the long struggle for civil rights that followed.

Watch a short YouTube video on the Memphis Race Riot HERE, or see the comprehensive lecture below by Dr. Steven Ash who authored, A Massacre In Memphis: The Bloody Race Riot Of 1866.

Dr. Steven Ash – “A Massacre In Memphis: The Bloody Race Riot Of 1866”