The Rosewood massacre was a violent, racially motivated conflict that
took place during the first week of January 1923 in rural Levy County,
Florida. Six blacks and two whites were killed, and the town of
Rosewood was abandoned and destroyed during what was characterized as a
race riot. Florida had an especially high number of lynchings in the
years before the massacre, including a well-publicized incident in
December 1922. Rosewood was a quiet, primarily black, self-sufficient
whistle stop on the Seaboard Air Line Railroad. Spurred by unsupported
accusations that a white woman in nearby Sumner had been beaten and
possibly raped by a black drifter, white men from nearby towns lynched
a Rosewood resident. When black citizens defended themselves against
further attack, several hundred whites combed the countryside hunting
for black people, and burned almost every structure in Rosewood.
Survivors hid for several days in nearby swamps, and were evacuated by
train and car to larger towns. Although state and local authorities
were aware of the violence, they made no arrests for the activities in
Rosewood. The town was abandoned by black residents during the attacks.
As of 2009, none have returned. Although the rioting was widely
reported around the country, few official records documented the event.
The massacre was the subject of a 1997 film directed by John Singleton.
In 2004 the state designated the site of Rosewood as a Florida Heritage
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Wiktionary's word of the day:
So difficult or taxing as to make one exhausted; backbreaking
Wikiquote quote of the day:
Throughout American history, there have been moments that call on us to
meet the challenges of an uncertain world, and pay whatever price is
required to secure our freedom.
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