Yesterday, I shared how my great, great-grandfather escaped the Ku Klux Klan. Well, not all of my relatives may have been so lucky.
A few weeks ago I heard a new family story – that one of my great, great-grandmother’s sons was lynched. The news came from a 92 year-old man who actually met my great, great-grandmother, Tempy Burton when he was a child. He remembered hearing that her son was lynched, but nothing more. I don’t know why he was lynched, if it was the Klan that lynched him or someone else. I don’t even know which of Tempy’s sons may have been lynched. Besides her oldest boy, Alfred, she had two: Warren and Louis born in the late 1860s probably in New Orleans, Louisiana or Ocean Springs, Mississippi. Both boys probably died sometime after the 1870s when they last show up on the Jackson Educable Index cited on oceanspringsarchives.net.
Investigating a lynching is not exactly what I signed up for when I started this blog less than a year ago. I just wanted to find out what happened to my great, grandmother, Josephine Burton Ford. But, now that I have this clue, I have to follow it. This man was Josephine’s brother. His history is my history. He deserves to be found too even if it’s exceedingly painful to see where he ended up.
So far, I’ve checked the following databases that list lynching victims in the United States:
Anywhere else I should look?
Thank you for always sharing your stories. It gives me the courage to share mine, even when they’re not pretty.