MQW Book Review

Review: by Mike G.
The Black Man's Burden, The Horrors of the Southern Lynchings, written  by Irenas J. Palmer in 1902.
From the preface:
Fifty years ago it was not an uncommon occurrence to see in the newspapers in certain sections of our country, the picture of a colored man with a stick across his shoulder to which a bundle was attached. Below the picture would be an advertisement offering a reward for the capture and return of a runaway slave. Nor was it an uncommon occurrence to see in the papers a few days later, the account of where a fugitive slave had been overtaken, but who, having retreated into the bogs and mire of a swamp beyond the reach of the pursuing blood hounds, and refusing to surrender and return to his pursuers, had been shot dead in his tracks. Even in these latitudes the affair would create but a temporary sensation, which would disappear in a few days.
   There were then men who denounced these outages and who appeal to the law-making powers for relief, but no relief was afforded. The people of this country stood before the world, darkened by the shadows of injustice and crime that pictured them as a cruel and half-civilized race. But down in the hearts of the American people there were justice and mercy. There were the underlying principles of humanity which needed but the awakening touch, to arise with irresistible force and right the wrongs of centuries.
   It is said that history repeats itself. Today we read the accounts of where colored men are shot, hanged or burned to death, and tomorrow it is forgotten. These outrages have been denounced, and the law-making powers have been appealed to for relief, but no relief has been afforded. We stand before the world as a heartless people, who permit the perpetration of cruel and fiendish crimes against man. The charge is true. But down in the souls of the people today are the principles of justice, humanity and civilization, that will someday be awakened to action and these wrongs will be righted.

Let me start off by saying… Wow!!!  This book is a powerful history lesion that begins with the American Revolution. It pinpoints the sacrifice and contributions of African Americans from the very beginning of the United States.
The author provides statistics, a speech by John Hancock, a proclamation from General Jackson and a documented statement from President Lincoln.
Never losing site of the books intent to bring attention to the lynch mobs that murdered thousands of African Americans, the author gives several detailed accounts of brutal, horrific lynchings. The interview of Julius Gardner, a man who was actually lynched and survived to relate his experience is an incredible, moving story. This book is a five star must read.

1 comment:

  1. History should be passed along; the truth to be not distorted. These aweful incidents occur in the past, in the South. It is even happening today in third world countries. No person, of any race, gender or any other not acceptable character uniqueness should be prosecuted like these unfortunate victims. Any one willing to bring the truth to the light should receive 5 stars.


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