Racial Tension During The Great Migration Essay

1699 Words7 Pages
Cierra Stevens
Professor Rankin
FYS100ZA Discovery: America Now
11 November 2016
Racial Tension in the North During the Great Migration
1910-1920
After the post-Civil War reconstruction era in 1879, white supremacy was at an all-time high. There was economic deprivation as the boll weevil and flooding exterminated cash crops like cotton, resulting in poor crop yields and an uncertain economy(Clark); threats from the supposedly subdued Ku Klux Klan, the need for better jobs, and segregation due to the Jim Crow Laws were some reasons why African Americans decided to flee the South. By 1919, one million African Americans had left the South by train, boat, bus, cars, and even horse drawn carts (Great Migration). This massive migration with little space in the North led the African Americans to make their own city with their own cultures.
African Americans were more likely to flee to the North from areas with abundant lynchings and racial violence. On February 12th, 1918, Jim McIlherron, an African American from Estill Springs, Tennessee, was accused of murdering two white men. Twenty masked men tortured him with hot irons, forcing other residents to watch. He was then chained to a tree and burned while he was still alive in front of a crowd of one thousand-five hundred. Many African Americans in Estill Springs left after that (Racial Violence and Black Migration in the American South). In 1912, Ernst Cox was accused of murdering and raping a young, white girl. Afterward,
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