The Tulsa, Oklahoma race massacre occurred in May 1921. On its 100th anniversary year, Oklahoma has decided to incorporate the account of this abominable incident into the statewide school curriculum. It had been kept a dark secret for decades, and had been deliberately kept out of the state’s historical narrative for over ninety nine years. Now the oldest survivor of the incident, Ms Viola Fletcher, 107-year-old, has asked for justice
All Tulsa needed, therefore, was a slight trigger for the situation to explode, and young Rowland had provided just that. The next day all it took was 16 hours for a white mob to wipe out Greenwood. It first began with indiscriminate firing at the Greenwood residents, almost everyone of African American descent. Airplanes are said to have dropped firebombs. At least 35 city blocks were burnt down and over 1,200 houses in the prosperous neighborhood completely destroyed. Over 800 men and women were injured. The official accounts said 37 people had succumbed to injuries, 25 of them blacks and 12 whites. Most believed, though, that the death toll was four times higher, perhaps even closer to 150.
Now, only if Dick Rowland hadn’t run to answer nature’s call and tripped over. How dare he?