Reparations for a history of violence committed against African Americans.

When people talk about “reparations” for African Americans they usually mean reparations for slavery—250 years of chattel bondage—but African Americans deserve compensation for a long list of crimes committed against them well after emancipation.

The Reconstruction Era

White supremacists, often including the Ku Klux Klan, carried out many acts of violence during the Reconstruction era in an effort to stop African Americans from advancing.

Illustration of a group of hooded Ku Klux Klan members preparing to lynch president Abraham Lincoln, circa 1867

African American families gather the dead and wounded of Louisiana's state militia in Colfax, Louisiana on April 14, 1873

Click on each city for the horrific details

Memphis, TN

01_Memphis

May 1866

New Orleans, LA

02_NewOrleans

July 1866

Pulaski, TN

03_Pulaski

January 7, 1868

Albany, GA

04_AlbanyGA

September 1868

Opelousas, LA

05_Opelousas

September 1868

St. Bernard Parish, LA

06_StBernardParish

October 1866

Meridan, MS

07_Meridian

March 1871

Colfax, LA

08_Colfax

April 1873

Barbour County, AL

09_Barbour

November 1874

Vicksburg, MS

10_Vicksburg

December 1874

The Jim Crow Era

The Klan used public violence against black people and their allies as intimidation. They burned houses and attached and killed black people, leaving their bodies on the roads.

Nocturnal gathering of robed and hooded Ku Klux Klan men in 1921-1922. Photo by National Photo Company and was likely taken within 100 miles of Washington, D.C.

Click on each city for the horrific details

Danville, VA

11_Danville

May 1866

Carrollton, MS

12_Carrollton

July 1866

Thibodaux, LA

13_Thibodaux

January 7, 1868

Polk County, AR

14_PolkCounty

September 1868

Wilmington, NC

15_Wilmington

September 1868

Springfield, IL

16_Springfield

August 1906

Atlanta, GA

17_Atlanta

September 1906

Slocum, TX

18_Slocum

July 1910

East St. Louis, MO

19_EStLouis

July 1917

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The "Red Summer" of 1919

Throughout 1919, and especially during the summer months, white supremacist terrorism and racial riots occurred in more than fifty cities and towns across the United States, as well as several rural areas. In addition, white mobs lynched at least 43 African Americans, with 8 men were burned at the stake

The anti-black violence was caused by a variety forces following World War I, including an economic slump, labor unrest, and increased competition in the job and housing markets between ethnic European Americans and African Americans. In addition, many feared socialist and communist influence on the black civil rights movement following the 1917 Russian Revolution

Click on each city for the horrific details

Jenkins County, GA

April

Charleston, SC

May

Washington, DC

July

Indianapolis, IN

July

Chicago, IL

July-August

Knoxville, TN

August

Omaha, NE

September

Elaine, AR

September

Corbin, KY

October

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Ocoee, FL

November 1920

Rosewood, FL

January 1923

Johnstown, PA

September 1923

Catcher, AR

December 29, 1923

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Tulsa, OK

May 31 + June 1, 1921

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The Civil Rights Era to the Present

Birmingham, AL

September 1963

Orangeburg, SC

February 1968

Greensboro, NC

November 1979

Philadelphia, PA

May 1985

Charleston, SC

June 2015

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What is being done to begin to make reparations for all of these crimes?

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National African American Reparations Commission (NAARC)

The NAARC has developed preliminary recommendations to guide the struggle for reparations for people of African descent in the U.S.:

  1. A formal apology and establishment of a MAAFA/African Holocaust Institute.
  2. The right of repatriation and creation of an African knowledge program.
  3. The right to land for social and economic development.
  4. Funds for cooperative enterprises and socially responsible entrepreneurial development.
  5. Resources for the health, wellness and healing of black families and communities.
  6. Education for community development and empowerment.
  7. Affordable housing for healthy black communities and wealth generation.
  8. Strengthening Black America’s information and communications infrastructure.
  9. Preserving Black sacred sites and monuments.
  10. Repairing the damages of the “criminal injustice system.”

From the preamble:

A political and economic system infected with white supremacy and structural/institutional racism persisted in retarding the dreams and aspirations of a people courageously striving to sustain families, build institutions and create healthy communities in a hostile land. The devastating damages of enslavement and systems of apartheid and de facto segregation spanned generations to negatively affect the collective well being of Africans in America to this very moment. Indeed, despite the civil rights/human rights “gains” achieved by the Black Freedom Struggle, the crises that continue to plague millions of Black people are incontrovertible proof that the disease of white supremacy still permeates the socio-economic and political culture, structures, institutions and systems of this society.”

Please support legislation pending in the House of Representatives: H.R. 40 – Commission to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African Americans Act.

To address the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality, and inhumanity of slavery in the United States and the 13 American colonies between 1619 and 1865 and to establish a commission to study and consider a national apology and proposal for reparations for the institution of slavery, its subsequent de jure and de facto racial and economic discrimination against African-Americans, and the impact of these forces on living African-Americans, to make recommendations to the Congress on appropriate remedies, and for other purposes.