Southern Anti-Lynching Movement Arises>Lewis Nordyke
Lewis T. Nordyke, "Ladies and Lynchings," Survey
Graphic, 28 (November 1939)
Mob violence, masquerading as the champion of southern womanhood,
is petering out below the Mason and Dixon line. And the weaker
sex is largely responsible. Nine years ago a small group of thinking
women who had long realized that there was more blood-thirst than
knight-errantry in howling mobs, organized the Association of
Southern Women for the Prevention of Lynching. Today, backed by
women's social, civic and religious groups that have more than
two million members in the southern states, the women are massed
in one of the most effective social programs ever attempted in
the United States and certainly one of the most vital and constructive
movements in the South -- that of preventing white men from lynching
Negroes for any cause whatsoever. . . .
tell part of the dramatic story of the patient anti-lynching campaign.
In the eight years previous to the founding of the women's association,
there were 211 lynchings in the nation. In 1930, the year the
association was founded, there were twenty-one lynchings in the
South. Records of the Tuskegee Institute show that in the first
eight years the women were organized there were 105 lynchings,
only half as many as in the previous eight years. . . .
the records show that in forty instances sheriffs and police officers,
many of them committed in writing to the women's program, prevented
lynchings in 1938.