Southern Women in the Anti-Lynching Campaign: Part A

This question is based on the accompanying documents (1-8). The question is designed to test your ability to work with historical documents. Some of the documents have been edited for the purposes of this question. As you analyze the documents, take into account both the source of each document and any point of view that may be presented in the document.

Historical Context:

After the end of Reconstruction in the South, a system of segregation emerged that was in part maintained by the threat of lynching, an act of violence in which white mobs seized, tortured and murdered black victims. Lynchings hit their peak in 1892, when mobs murdered 230 African Americans. Southerners rationalized this sadistic practice by claiming that its main purpose was to protect the virtue of southern white women from Black men. However, many of the victims of lynching were not even accused of sexual violence, including the many women and children who were lynched.

African-American women led the growing vocal opposition to lynching in the 1890s. After 1920, white southern women also began to protest lynching. The Association of Southern Women to Prevent Lynching, formed in 1930 under the leadership of Jessie Daniel Ames, hoped to eradicate mob violence by educating the southern public about the falseness of common justifications for lynching.


Using information from the documents and your knowledge of United States history, answer the questions that follow each document in Part A. Your answers to the questions will help you write the essay in Part B, in which you will be asked to:

• Describe the practice of lynching in the United States

• Discuss black women's activism to prevent lynching

• Describe methods used by the Associaton of Southern Women to Prevent Lynching

• Evaluate the results.

Part A: Short-Answer Questions

Directions: Analyze the documents and answer the short-answer questions that follow each document in the space provided.

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