Most Americans are familiar with the brutal history of lynching, the mob violence that killed more than 4,000 Black people across the United States. But when we think about racial terror, we often think about the South. This new research initiative is dedicated to unearthing and documenting a history that remains largely unexplored and untold: The story of lynchings in the North.

Between 1877 and 1950, scores of African Americans were lynched in northern and mid-Atlantic states. In New York. New Jersey. Maryland. Pennsylvania. Delaware. Ohio. Illinois. Kansas. Nebraska. Minnesota. North Dakota. For more than half a century, their stories have remained largely unknown.

The Hidden Legacies project at New York University’s Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute is compiling archival records about the Black men and women who were killed and the white mobs who killed them. Our journalism students are researching the lives of the victims and telling their stories to help our nation better understand how families and communities today are grappling with the legacy of this racial violence.

Collage, From left: Octavius Catto, House, Fifth ward murders clipping

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