Aug. 7, 2019

Bitter Fruit, We Must Never Allow Ourselves To Forget The Savageness Of This Nation

August 7, 1930, Real History The Savage Mob

Today's historical moment in time takes us back 87 years to August 7, 1930, when 2 black men were lynched and one miraculously saved. Back in the dark days of Jim Crow America white mobs terrorized blacks throughout the nation. There was no talk of the lone wolf terrorist who stalked the communities of black America. It was the white wolf mobs that create hatred and mayhem not only in the former confederate states but in states throughout this nation. 89 years ago we should never forget the names of Thomas Shipp and Abram Smith who were taken from a jail cell in Marion, Indiana by mobs thousands of so-called citizens white men.

Shipp and Smith were savagely brutalized, burned alive and shot and butchered with a crowd of 15,000 whites, men, women, and children watching in a carnival atmosphere. There was no trial for Smith and Shipp, they were no testimony from witnesses detailing the crimes that Smith and Shipp were accused of. The mob convicted them and carried out the sentence for all of this nation to see. The photos of the strange fruit hanging from the massive Indiana tree bore the illegitimacy of a twisted nation reveling in the racial hatred of whites against the entire race of blacks.

Had it not been for the fact that one survivor James Cameron, a young black teenager who was saved from the hangman's noose and the butchery when a lone white voice called out his innocence. Mr. Cameron lived 92 full years and became an advocate against racial terror that came in the mode of lynching blacks. During his life, James Cameron became an entrepreneur, father of five, civil rights activist, and founder of this museum. He taught people to “forgive but not forget” and to be “better, not bitter.”

However, Thomas Shipp or Abram Smith didn't live long lives. They had their lives snuffed out in the main town square of Marion, Indiana. They were never convicted of any crime. Yet, one accusation caused the hated mania of those mobs of white men, rape and neither Shipp nor Smith stood a chance after that accusation. They would not last the night and the visible sign of both Shipp and Smith hanging mutilated from that Indiana tree was a sign for any other blacks in Marion to not step across the line, or they would face the same treatment.