The scenes in many of Oliver Clasper’s photographs are utterly mundane, bereft of any dazzling camera tricks or rich colors. They are quiet, almost too much so. But once you learn what happened in these scenes from small towns, big cities or verdant fields, their almost unemotional first impression gives way to horror: Someone was lynched there.
New Executive Director of LSP...
We are excited to announce that John Ashworth will take on the role as Executive Director of the Lynching Sites Project of Memphis. John previously served as Project Manager for the May 21, 2017 centennial commemoration of the lynching of Ell Persons.
John Ashworth has served as Chairman of the Elbert Williams Memorial Committee in Brownsville, Tennessee. Mr. Elbert Williams was a lynching victim in 1940 as a result of his leadership in organizing a chapter of the NAACP in Brownsville (Haywood County).
Listen to Christie Taylor's recent (Jan 14, 2018) WRBO radio interview with our own John Ashworth and Margaret Vandiver, for an account of the work of the Lynching Sites Project and how it connects with the issues of race in 2018. It is about a half hour in length but begins with 3-5 minutes of music - feel free to skip ahead to the interview.
The Lynching Sites Project of Memphis enthusiastically supports the removal of the statues of Nathan Bedford Forrest and Jefferson Davis. Our deep thanks goes out to TakeEmDown901, the Mayor, city legal team, the City Council and many others. Our mission is to locate and memorialize all the sites of lynchings that took place in Shelby County.
On April 26, 2018, EJI will unveil two new national institutions designed to deepen and amplify the national conversation about racial justice.
The Legacy Museum tells the little-known true story of slavery in America and its legacy. Located on the site of a former warehouse where black people were enslaved, this narrative museum uses interactive media, sculpture, film, and exhibits to immerse visitors in the sights and sounds of the domestic slave trade, racial terrorism, the Jim Crow South, and the world's largest prison system.
Servente’s other award was for “An Accidental Drowning” in the MLK50 Hometowner category, a special competition for films with racial and social justice themes created in recognition of the upcoming observance of the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s trips to Memphis in support of striking sanitation workers, which ended in the civil rights leader's assassination at the Lorraine Motel.
In this soil, there is the sweat of the enslaved. In the soil there is the blood of victims of racial violence and lynching. There are tears in the soil from all those who labored under the indignation and humiliation of segregation. But in the soil there is also the opportunity for new life, a chance to grow something hopeful and healing for the future.
- EJI Director Bryan Stevenson
Representative Johnnie Turner, whose comments from the Boxley Soil collection in Crockett County are shown in this video, will be speaking to the Lynching Sites Project at the Monday Meeting on October 23, 2017. The meetings take place at First Baptist Church on East Parkway, and are from 5:00pm to 7:00pm. We hope you will join us!
Facing History and Ourselves is an organization that helps high school students recognize racism, anti-semitism, and all forms of bigotry so they can prevent it from happening in the future. It empowers students through knowledge of self and history so that they can become upstanders, people who will stand up and act for justice on behalf of their community.