Wednesday, April 07, 2021

Today -100: April 7, 1921: Of peons, yapping, and involuntary deputies

Testifying in the trial of the Georgia plantation owner John Williams for the murder of Lindsey Peterson, Clyde Manning, the “coal black” negro who killed some of the 11 black workers on Williams’ orders, says he was afraid Williams would kill him if he disobeyed. Williams killed (or had killed) the men he was afraid would talk to federal investigators looking into peonage on the farm. 6 of the men were chained to rocks and thrown into rivers while still alive, the rest were shot or hit in the head. Of the several articles on this case, this is the first to confirm that Williams acquired the services of the men by paying their court fines.

Secretary of State Charles Evans Hughes writes to Britain, France, Italy and Japan refusing to accept the League of Nations decision to grant Japan a mandate over the island of Yap and indeed rejecting its power to grant any mandate without US permission, citing the “right accruing to the United States through the victory in which it has participated.”

The king of Italy dissolves the parliament and sets elections for May 15.

The sheriff of Polk County, Florida thwarts a lynching of a black prisoner by... swearing every member of the mob in as a deputy sheriff.

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