The Colfax Massacre: The Largest Acts Of Racial Violence In The Reconstruction Era

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The “Colfax Massacre” was undoubtedly one of the largest acts of racial violence in the “Reconstruction era”. In 1872-1873 after the civil war, Ulysses S. Grant granted politicians from the north political power in order to keep the Confederates away from writing laws which would render the entire point of the Civil War useless. Although because of this, the Confederates wanted to continue dehumanizing the African-American population. They continued restricting the rights of the African-American people and began terrorizing them with the “Ku Klux Klan” and “White League” organizations. Eventually in April 1873, a mob made up of more than 150 white Democrats showed up at the “Colfax Perish Courthouse” and would attempt to take control of the …show more content…
No mercy was shown from the Democrats during this attack as both sides opened fire onto each other until the African-American defenders were forced to surrender due to the attackers herding them into the courthouse and set it on fire. This is the point where the battle turned into a massacre, as even though the defenders attempted to arrange for surrender, the Democrats continued to open fire and chase down those who attempted to escape in order to execute them. After the massacre took place, it was confirmed that three white men died, but as for the African-Americans, only an estimated amount were confirmed to have died. It is usually estimated that about 150 African-Americans died during this massacre, which can be confirmed due to a plaque at the site where the “Colfax Massacre” took …show more content…
Not only did the African-Americans suffer a large amount of deaths, but when the aforementioned trails against the attackers completely failed and showed the White Supremacists exactly what they could get away with, it was all but certain that they were to be terrorized and be never fully free for a long time to come. During the massacre, the African-Americans were the front line of defense for the Republicans between the attackers and the courthouse, whereas the Democrats had African prisoners in order to of push the idea that the African people were the cause of the violence, which would work and eventually give the massacre a second name, “The Colfax Riots”. The White side of the spectrum was split in half, there were the Republicans which at the time attempted to create laws to help the African-American people, and the Democrats which organized this massacre and wished to dehumanize and terrorize those of

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