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Opelousas Massacre

  • White Mob in Opelousas, Louisiana killed nearly 300 Blacks Over The Right To Vote.


  • September 28, 1868, The violence started when three local white men beat up another white person and friend of the black community Emerson Bentley, he was also a school teacher and editor of a local newspaper. Bently was beaten for registering blacks to vote, especially for an upcoming sheriff's election. . False rumors spread throughout the black community in Opelousas that Bently was murdered. Several local armed African Americans came to the defense of Bentley and held the town of Opelousas under siege for several days.. Because of a city ordinance passed by outlaw politicians banning blacks only from owing guns, not many had weapons at their disposal. That day, at least two dozen unarmed African Americans  were arrested and hung that same night. The following days, local whites went on an animalistic savage rampage against blacks. At least 200 unarmed African Americans were killed in the fields and swamps. 30 to 50 whites were killed when they confronted blacks with arms.

                                                  
 
Other tactics used to suppress black voting rights were to allege charges of larceny, robbery and other property offenses against prominent blacks and whites sympathetic to voting rights causes. This was a another tactic used in addition to murder in order to influence an election in their favor. In many instances, the charge of stealing chickens was used to justify the lynching of blacks and whites of the Republican party trying to register blacks to vote. Many emanate black politicians also met with the same fate on trumped up charges of stealing hogs, chickens and cattle. Regularly accusing white republicans of inciting blacks to murder and robbery, White newspapers all over the state including the Opelousas Courier downplayed black casualties and justified attacks against blacks, whites and  republican newspapers sympathetic to the black cause and as a result, became greater targets of white racist rage..


Most African-Americans and white sympathizers during this period belonged to the Republican Party aka “The Party of Lincoln. The white confederate racist belonged to the Democratic Party. The Republican Party of this period should in no way be mistaken for the Republican party of today, In fact many of the racist white descendants of the Democratic Party switched parties and now belong to the Republican Party of Today.

There were many incidents causing their switch to the republican party: Lyndon Johnson passing of the civil rights act, Ronald Reagan's southern campaign strategy beginning in Philadelphia, MS a hot bed of southern racism, and the strong democratic primary performance by the Rev. Jessie Jackson in the presidential races of 1984 and 1988, All were factors in getting southern racist like Strom Thurman, Jessie Helms, George Wallace and their followers to abandon the democratic party.
African Americans began to leave the democratic party when democratic candidate John Kennedy in October of 1960, less then three weeks before the presidential election, Martin Luther King Jr., already recognized as Black America’s most prominent civil rights leader, had been arrested in Georgia on a traffic technicality: he was still using his Alabama license, although by then he had lived in Georgia for three months.

A swift series of moves by the state’s segregationist power structure resulted in King being sentenced to four months of hard labor on a Georgia chain gang. He was quickly spirited away to the state’s maximum security prison, and many of his supporters, fearing for his life, urgently called both the Nixon and Kennedy camps for help.

Nixon, soon to campaign in South Carolina with hopes of wining the state's majority Democratic vote, said nothing. Kennedy took action. He telephoned a frantic Coretta Scott King, telling her, “If there’s anything I can do to help, please feel free to call on me.” King was soon released after the call and many African-Americans remembered the gesture by voting for him. Another important event was the signing of the Civil Rights Bill by President Lyndon Johnson the most any president had done for blacks since Lincoln and Grant including Kennedy.

The old south still has not changed much when it comes to race relations, with polls showing most whites in the southern states of Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Arkansas, Kentucky and Tennessee, would not vote for an African-American even though they where not happy with the republican candidate or party. Voter Suppression and false allegations against opposing party candidates are still very much a part of the old confederate strategy within the new republican party.


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Here Are More Incidents In Opelousas History and African-American Life In Louisiana During This Holocaustic Era



The Louisiana Democrat Party’s taste for blood didn’t stop there. Just six years after The Opelousas Massacre, and eight years after the “Massacre of the Innocents”, Louisiana Democrats again turned violent.

  • September 14, 1874: Racist white Democrats stormed Louisiana’s statehouse to oust GOP Governor William Kellogg’s racially integrated administration; 27 are killed.

Emboldened by the federal hands-off policies, 3,500 armed White Leaguers a KKK like organization originating from Opelousas assembled in New Orleans on September 14, 1874, and demanded that Republican Gov. William Kellog resign. Opposing the White League were 3,600 policemen and black militia troops under the command of ex-Confederate General James Longstreet. Supported by two Gatling guns and a battery of artillery, Longstreet’s force formed a battle line from Jackson Square to Canal Street, guarding the Customs House, in which the governor and other Republican officials had taken refuge. The White Leaguers fled when Union reinforcements arrived. Total casualties in the one-hour fight that has become known as the Battle of Liberty Place were 38 killed and 79 wounded.



White League

 

The White League, organized in Louisiana in 1874, was a broad-based paramilitary movement consisting of autonomous local "clubs" committed to White Supremacy. It first appeared at Opelousas in April and then spread rapidly throughout the state. White Leagues held large rallies, disrupted court sessions, and threatened to assassinate Republican officeholders in order to coerce them to resign from office and to drive both black laborers and Republicans from their homes. On 30 August leaguers were involved with the murder of six Republican officials from Red River Parish, and on 14 September the Crescent City White League successfully battled the Metropolitan Police and occupied the city hall, statehouse, and arsenal in New Orleans. They withdrew the next day, when federal troops arrived in the city. The league disappeared after having attained its objective with the election of a Democrat as governor in 1876.



________________________________________________________________________

Police of Recently Emancipated Negroes
Town of Opelousas

ORDINANCE
Relative to the Police of Recently Emancipated Negroes or Freedmen, Within the Corporate Limits of the Town of Opelousas

Whereas the relations formerly subsisting between master and slave have become changed by the action of the controlling authorities; and whereas it is necessary to provide for the proper policing and government of the recently emancipated Negroes or freedmen, in their new relations to the municipal authorities;

Sect. 1. Be it therefore ordained by the Board of Police of the Town of Opelousas: that no Negro or freedman shall be allowed to come within the limits of the Town of Opelousas without special permission from his employer specifying the object of his visit and the time necessary for the accomplishment of the same. Whoever shall violate this provision shall suffer imprisonment and two days' work on the public streets, or shall pay a fine of two dollars and fifty cents.

Sect. 2. Be it further ordained that every Negro or freedman who shall be found on the streets of Opelousas after 10 o'clock at night without a written pass or permit from his employer, shall be imprisoned and compelled to work five days on the public streets, or pay a fine of five dollars.

Sect. 3. No Negro or freedman shall be permitted to rent or keep a house within the limits of the town under any circumstances, and any one thus offending shall be ejected, and compelled to find an employer or leave the town within twenty-four hours. The lessor or furnisher of the house leased or kept as above shall pay a fine of ten dollars for each offense

Sect. 4. No Negro or freedman shall reside within the limits of the Town of Opelousas who is not in the regular service of some white person or former owner, who shall be held responsible for the conduct of said freedman. But said employer or former owner may permit said freedman to hire his time, by special permission in writing, which permission shall not extend over twenty-four hours at any one time. Any one violating the provisions of this section shall be imprisoned and compelled to work for two days in the public streets, or pay a fine of five dollars.

Sect. 5. No public meetings or congregations of Negroes or freedmen shall be allowed within the limits of the Town of Opelousas, under any circumstances or for any purpose, without the permission of the Mayor or President of the Board. This prohibition is not intended, however, to prevent freedmen from attending the usual church services conducted by established ministers of religion. Every freedman violating this law shall be imprisoned and made to work five days on the public streets.

Sect. 6. No Negro or freedman shall be permitted to preach, exhort, or otherwise declaim to congregations of colored people without a special permission from the Mayor or President of the Board of Police, under the penalty of a fine of ten dollars or twenty days' work on the public streets.

Sect. 7. No freedman who is not in the military service shall be allowed to carry fire-arms or any kind of weapons within the limits of the Town of Opelousas, without the special permission of his employer, in writing, and approved by the Mayor or President of the Board of Police. Any one thus offending shall forfeit his weapons and shall be imprisoned and made to work five days on the public streets or pay a fine of five dollars in lieu of said work.

Sect. 8. No freedman shall sell, barter or exchange any articles or merchandise of traffic within the limits of Opelousas, without permission from his employer or the Mayor or President of the Board, under the penalty of the forfeiture of said articles, and imprisonment and one day's labor, or a fine of one dollar in lieu of said work.

Sect. 9. Any freedman found drunk within the limits of the Town shall be imprisoned and made to labor five days on the public streets, or pay five dollars in lieu of said labor.

Sect. 10. Any freedman not residing in Opelousas, who shall be found within its corporate limits after the hour of 3 o'clock P.M., on Sunday, without a special written permission from his employer or the Mayor, shall be arrested and imprisoned and made to work two days on the public streets, or pay two dollars in lieu of said work.

Sect. 11. All the foregoing provisions apply to freedmen and freedwomen, or both sexes.

Sect. 12. It shall be the special duty of the Mayor or President of the Board to see that all the provisions of this ordinance are faithfully executed.

Sect. 13. Be it further ordained, that this ordinance is to take effect from and after its first publication.

Ordained the 3rd day of July, 1865.

(Signed) E. D. ESTILLETTE,
President of the Board of Police

(Signed)
JOS. D. RICHARD, Clerk

Return







Records of the Assistant Commissioner for the State of Louisiana


Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen and Abandoned Lands, 1865 - 1869.
National Archives Microfilm M1027 Roll 34 Records Relating to Murders and Outrages

"Miscellaneous Reports and Lists Relating to Murders and Outrages" Mar. 1867 - Nov. 1868


Head Quarters Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen and Abandoned Lands State of Louisiana
New Orleans, La. March 9th, 1867

Bvt. Brig. Genl. Samuel Thomas
A. A. A. Genl. Bureau R. F. and A. L.
Washington, D. C.

General,

In accordance with instructions contained in communication from War Dept. Bureau Ref. Freedmen and Abandoned Lands, Washington D. C. of January 24th, 1867, I have the honor to submit the following report of the number of murders and outrages committed in this state since the organizing of the Bureau to February 20th, 1867 in which Freedmen have been victims or parties as reported to this office by the Agents of the Bureau.

The following statement will show the number of outrages or victims in the aggregate, a detailed history of each case being given in succeeding pages of the report.

Freedmen killed by whites . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70
Freedmen supposed to have been killed at Riot in addition to those reported . . . . . . .. . . . . . 10
Freedmen murdered - no clue to perpetrators . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
Freedmen shot at, whipped, stabbed, beaten &c . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . 41 210
Freedmen supposed to have been wounded at Riot in addition to those reported . . . . . . . . . . 20
Freedmen murdered by Freedmen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . 2
Whites murdered by Freedmen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

In no instance in any of the foregoing cases has a white man been punished for killing or ill treating a freedman. In some few cases the guilty parties are in jail awaiting trial but the majority have either been justified by a Coroner's Jury, acquitted or admitted to bail in sums varying from $300 to $1,000 and in one instance $3,000.

On the other hand, of the three freedmen charged with murder, two have been convicted and hung. There can be no doubt but that in some of the North Western Parishes of this state many murders and outrages have been committed which will never be brought to right and it is thought the aggregate number of murders given above would be more than doubled had all the cases been reported to the Agents of the Bureau.

In the following pages the cases are given in the order in which they occurred with the action taken by the Civil Authorities in each case as far as known.

July 5th, 1865 - Lieut. E. Ehrlich, Agent at Amite City reports that on this day Amile Lovitt, Marshal of the place, took a party of men to arrest Richmond Moore, a freedman. Rufus Pray, one of Lovitt's party, seeing the freedman at dinner instantly drew his pistol at the freedman trying to escape, shot at him several times, finally killing him. Pray acknowledged the shooting and was unmolested by the Civil Authorities.

July 9th, 1865 - Reported by Lieut. Ehrlich, Agent Amite City, St. Tamany Parish - about 5 o'clock p.m. Hardy, a freedman, was going home from church when Lovitt, Marshal of Amite City asked the freedman for his pass, who replied "he had none nor did he consider it necessary now." Lovitt then struck him over the head with his pistol, and on his running off fired at him twice, wounding a white man who was standing near. When the freedman reached the main street a man in a coffee house emptied his revolver at him, two balls taking effect in his body. The freedman was very dangerously wounded. Military authorities tried to arrest parties but failed. Civil Authorities did nothing.

July 10th, 1865 - Lieut. E. Ehrlich, Agent at Amite City, reported that Margaret Story, freedwoman, was shot in the shoulder by Mr. George Story for some trivial offense. The Civil Authorities took cognizance of the case when requested by the Agent and in November the case was tried before the District Court for the Parish, the accused being honorably acquitted, he bringing proof that she was shooting at a man who was standing in an opposite direction, although he acknowledged or and it was proved the ball from his pistol entered and was still in the shoulder of the freedwoman.

July 21st, 1865 - P. J. Fazende of Gretna, La. shot Lew, a freedman, on suspicion of stealing his watermelons. Freedman not dangerously wounded. Justice Nandain wished to have him imprisoned till the November term of court and then be tried for stealing the melons.

August 2nd, 1865 - Lieut. W. B. Stickney, Agent at Shreveport reports the murder in cold blood in the Northern part of the Parish of Caddo of Mary, a colored woman, by John Johnson, the son of the proprietor of the plantation. No action taken by Civil or Military Authorities.

August 11th, 1865 - Lieut. L. L. Butler at Alexandria, Rapides Parish, reports that a planter, Thomas Wall of Springville, Natchitoches Parish, struck a colored girl breaking her forearm and fracturing her skull. No action taken by Civil Authorities.

August 20th, 1865 - Damascas D. Day attempted to kill Mary Stewart (freedwoman), cutting her on the head, side & arms with a knife, and otherwise maltreated maltreating her. Civil Authorities did nothing. Day was arrested and brought to New Orleans and then turned over to the Civil Authorities for trial. At the District Court in November no witnesses appearing against him, it being believed they were either kept away by threats, he was acquitted and immediately afterwards appointed one of the Grand Jury then in session.

September 10th, 1865 - Daniel Williams, residing about 25 miles from Amite City in St. Tammany Parish, tied a colored woman up and whipped her. Name unknown. No action taken.

October 20th, 1865 - James J. Anderson committed an unprovoked assault on Samuel Moore, freedman, in the public road in Amite County, Miss. The case taken up by Military Authorities and transferred with the accused to the Civil Authorities and resulting resulted in the case being dismissed by Judge Saylie at the next sitting of the Court.

October 31st, 1865 - In the Parish of St. James, Briston Austin, freedman, was shot by P. B. Marchand. In this case on Jany. 1st, 1867 Bvt. Capt. Brough reports case in status quo, accused out on bail in $300 bonds. Court not yet taken notice of it.

December 24th, 1865 - Nelson Logan, freedman, complains that a party of about 30 of the Bossier Parish Militia commanded by N. Taylor, came to plantation of John Adams in Bossier Parish in search of arms, took Logan to the woods and hung him by the neck till he was senseless. Only remembered four of the gang (viz., N. Taylor, R. Matthews, G. McAlley & James Carter - all returned Confederate soldiers).

December 25th, 1865 - A party of men under command of N. Taylor, Bossier Militia, came to plantation of Mrs. Dickson in Bossier Parish, knocked at door of house of Willis Dickson (freedman) employed on place, on his opening door struck him over the head with revolver and on his trying to escape. When he started to run, he was shot by some of the party, from the effects of which he died next day. Reported by Captain Harrigan, Agent at Shreveport. No action taken by Civil Authorities.

January 5th, 1866 - Lieut. G. H. Harris, agent at Houma, Terrebonne Parish, reports that on the previous night Captain H. C. Daspit, commanding Militia employed by Parish Patrols, shot a freedman Cary Jackson. At the coroner's inquest the only witnesses were two of the militia, who swore Daspit was acting in self defense. Verdict of justifiable homicide.

January 23rd, 1866 - Captain J. S. Clark, Agent at Opelousas reports that on Thomas McCrory's plantation on Bayou ?Boaf, St. Landry's, an old freedman, Martin Parks, was ordered by the overseer, McClary, to whip another freedman. Martin refused, saying the law was against him when McClary instantly shot him compelling fracturing his arm and then compelled him to whip the freedman himself. In this case, the justice refusing to entertain a complaint, he was arrested by Military Authority, and brought to this city & tried by the Mil. Commissioner. No action on part of Civil Authorities.

March 9th, 1866 - Capt. J. S. Clark reports one James Donovan (white) in the employ of Mr. McKinney, without any just cause or provocation shot and dangerously wounded a freedman. Warrant issued and Sheriff tried to arrest accused but without effect.

March 12th, 1866 - Lieut. W. H. Cornelius, St. Martinsville, reports that a colored boy, Gustass Wilson Vincent, was sitting on a bank on the land of St. Are Wiltz, catching crawfish, two white boys being in his company. When Wiltz called, the white boys went to him and the colored boy, afraid of punishment, ran away. Wiltz shot at him with shot gun, some 15 or more shot being in each leg & foot. Justice Thibadeaux bound accused (Wiltz) over to answer in $250 bonds.

March 31st, 1866 - Lieut. W. H. Cornelius, St. Martinsville, reports two freedmen waylaid and dangerously assaulted about two miles from Iberia by two or more whites. One was stabbed once and one the other six times. Civil Authorities could not discover guilty parties.

April 5th, 1866 - Lieut. C. E. Merrill, Agent at Franklin, reports that Robert Malone, a colored boy was shot on McWilliam's plantation by William (illegible). Agent for Mrs. Porter (remainder of page torn off).

April 10th, 1866 - Captain J. Martin, Opelousas, reports a freedman name not known was murdered at Flat Town about 18 miles from Opelousas. No arrest made.

(top of page torn off) - Reports an attack was made upon an adult colored school kept by W. Barnham, late Lieut. Agent of Board of Education. An building school broken up, and while dispersing they were attacked by one Harel (white), cook at Ouachita Hotel, who stabbed four of the Negroes (two died). W. Barnham, teacher, was severely cut, but recovered. Harel made his escape and has not been arrested. Citizens denounced outrage.

April 27th, 1866 - Bt. Major James Cromie, Natchitoches, reports Usan Tennace was killed about 5 miles from Natchitoches by Samuel Newman Lawson & William Kimball of Winn Parish. Inquest held and warrants issued for arrests of accused. On June 30/66 Major Cromie reports accused have evaded arrest and defy civil and military authorities. At the end of the year these parties were reported as living near Harrisonburg in Winn Parish, unmolested by Civil Authorities.

April 17th, 1866 - Bt. Major B. B. Brown, Vidalia, reports Samuel Hudson, freedman, was killed by Carr & Shucks (white men) and that Civil Authorities had endeavored to arrest accused.

April 28th, 1866 - Bt. Major Cromie, Natchitoches, reports Jonas Bailey, freedman, was killed on Jordan Plantation about 30 miles from Natchitoches by Thomas Jordan. Warrant issued for his arrest, and placed in hands of Deputy Sheriff who called on Jordan who refused to be arrested. Officer through fear did not make arrest. Accused afterwards surrendered himself to Coroner and at the investigation held by officer (illegible) Jordan was justified and discharged.

April 29th, 1866 - Lieut. W. H. Cornelius, St. Martinsville, reports Joseph Gralan, a free colored boy, was shot in the face by Onesiphore DeLahoassaye for some trifling offense DeLahoassaye escaped. Boy will recover with loss of left eye. Civil Authorities did not give case attention it required or accused would not have escaped.

April 29th, 1866 - Bt. Maj. Wallace, Pointe Coupee, reports Siras Norvell, freedman was shot by J. H. Hamilton, his employer, who dreading the relatives of deceased went into Mississippi. In August, on the representations of Major Wallace that he would be protected from malice, accused returned, surrendered, was examined by Justice of the Peace and bound over until session of District Court in Dec.

May 12th, 1866 - Captain Twitchell, Sparta, Bienville Parish, reports on night of May 12th, John Moseley, white, went to house of freedman Henry McClardy, stole his gun, then pointing his pistol at freedman's head made him and another freedman named Owens march off to the woods, and there compelled each to tie the other up and whip him. Mosely was on a visit from Texas but threatened if case was reported to Bureau to remain long enough in Louisiana to kill freedmen. No action taken by Civil Authorities, they being afraid to take any notice of the case.

May 16th, 1866 - Bt. Major Cromie, Natchitoches, reports Isabella Robinson, freedwoman, was whipped by her employer F. R. Lalleer with a lariat rope. Freedwoman brought action against employer for damages.

May 20th, 1866 - Bt. Major Cromie, Natchitoches, reports Amos Owens, freedman, was returning home accompanied by William Weeks & Thomas Page (white men), meeting Columbus Hines, Mac Norton, his two sons and Newson Cloud. McNorton, without any provocation, attempted to beat the freedman. On his trying to escape, Newson Cloud & Mac Norton fired at him, one wounding him. They then tied him and beat him on the head with a stick. Warrant issued for the arrest of accused. Parties residing near Lahone Swamp, near the line in angle formed by three parishes, defy Civil and Military Authorities to arrest them.

May 25th, 1866 - Lieut. N. S. Collins, Martinsville, Anoyelles, reports a freedman (name not given) was stabbed on Murdock Plantation by ----------- Lenall, one of his employers, without any provocation. No action taken.

May 26th, 1866 - Lieut. G. W. Rollins, Lake Providence, reports a freedman insulted the wife of W. R. C. Lyons (owner of a leased plantation) during his absence from home. On his return, Lyons gave the freedman 30 lashes. The overseer of the place, Hopkins (employed by the lessee), told Lyons he would protect the freed people. Lyons then went to Lake Providence and returning to the plantation with his crowd, knocked Hopkins down with a pistol, gave him 300 lashes with a cowhide, brought him to the river, put him on a steamboat and sent him down the river. An infantry force was sent to Lake Providence and remained there for some time but were unable to arrest any of the accused who absconded for the time.

May 27th, 1866 - Lieut. Rollins, Lake Providence, reports that about 10 o'clock on Sunday morning in the town of Lake Providence, Martin Day, freedman, for answering a white boy quickly was knocked down by Mr. Kingsly (white), taken through the town facing the East and there stopped and terribly beaten with rawhides by Kingsly and some 6 or 7 other men, who put a rope around his neck, nearly choked him, jumped upon him &c. Civil Authorities took no notice of the affair and on arrival of the Military the parties left the Parish.

May 27th, 1866 - Lt. Col. Hood, Shreveport, reports Henry Texas, freedman, killed by Asmar Hollingsworth. No action taken by Civil Authorities (see also Case files).

June 3rd, 1866 - Lieut. James Hough, Amite City, reports freedman Luke J. Arrold was shot & killed by Wm. Y. Bates. Coroner's Jury brought in verdict of justifiable homicide. Agent got warrant for Bates arrest (bound over to appear).

June 11th, 1866 - Captain J. S. Clark, Opelousas, reports 10 or 12 freedmen who had assembled in a building in the town of Washington rented by them for the purpose of holding a religious meeting were arrested for disturbing the peace before they had commenced their exercise and fined $4 each because as it was charged some persons at the same place previously preached or prayed too loud.

June 20th, 1866 - Lt. Burns, Munroe, reports a freedman name unknown was shot by E. McTee who was acting Deputy Sheriff. It is alleged freedman had attempted to enter a young lady's room and was shot while swimming a river attempting to escape after being desired to halt. Case in hands of Civil Authorities.

July 3rd, 1866 - Geo. F. Ruby, colored teacher at Jackson, La., was taken from his house at night by about 30 men with blackened faces and compelled to walk on his bare feet & with only linen pants & under shirt on about a mile and a half to Thompson's Creek, then severely flogged by each of the ruffians, and compelled to cross the creek at the most imfordable part. Alfred Hazard, George Schultz, town constable, George Hamilton, Frank Nosworthy and Tom Harris recognized as part of the gang. Case taken up by Military Authorities and turned over with accused to U. S. Commissioner. Parties held to bail.

July 3rd, 1866 - Captain M. L. Norton, Baton Rouge, La., reports Lewis J. Kelly (white) had a dispute with one of his freedmen, Pannum Ramsey. Kelly was standing in his door yard, Ramsey outside the gate in the cornfield with his hoe in his hand. While talking Ramsey came toward Kelly, who, as he alleged, thought Ramsey was going to kill him with the hoe, went in to the house, got his shot gun and shot Ramsey dead, Kelly being about 12 ft. from him when he shot. Kelly immediately went to Mr. M. Hough, Justice of the Peace, was tried and acquitted on account of accusable homicide. Several freed people who saw occurrence were not examined. Kelly left his house and has not returned home.

July 4th, 1866 - Lieut. N. Ludlow, Houma, reports Mr. Boardman, overseer of Vessel Place, ordered freedman not to leave the place. They disobeyed, travel to Houma. On their return Boardman said if he had his gun he would shoot them. Wm. Bond, standing near offered Boardman his pistol. Boardman refusing to use it, Bond fired twice into the crowd, hitting Mrs. ?Tomley, a freedwoman. Case referred to Justice who placed Bond under $300 to appear in Court. Nothing further will be done with him.

July 11th, 1865 - Bvt. Capt. Brough reports that Abraham Allen, freedman, was killed by Jules Guidry, Constable of St. James Parish at Donaldsonville. On December 1866 the Grand Jury failed to find a true bill against accused.

July 14th, 1866 - Bvt. Capt. Brough reports Ben Walker, a freedman, found murdered in cane field on P. Gidray's plantation, St. James. Willis Cummins, freedman, supposed murderer, arrested and turned over to Civil Authorities, convicted and hung.

July 15th, 1866 - Capt. N. B. Blanton, Sparta, Bienville Parish, reports that John Washington (freedman), employed by Mr. Jas. Smith, Port Robinson, Lake Bistineau, was taken from his house to the woods at midnight, given 300 lashes and ordered to leave the Parish. Thinks Ernest McCarthy, Frank King and McEvans were the men. They came after him again but he hid from them. Threatened to kill him if he reported to Bureau. No action taken by Civil Authorities.

July 20th, 1866 - Lieut. Burns, Monroe, reports body of freedman found in river 8 miles below Monroe. Marks of violence on body and hatchet found on bank. Supposed to have been committed by freedman. Coroner's inquest failed to find any clue to guilty parties.

July 28th, 1866 - Capt. N. B. Blanton, Sparta, reports Alford Ward, freedman employed by J. W. Cook, Arcadia, Bienville Parish, was ordered to strip himself to be whipped. Refusing, he was beaten with a spoke of a wheel until he did so. When whipped received about 400 lashes with a buggy strap. Captain Blanton saw wounds and gashes a month afterwards. J. W. Cook, Burch, John Andas & James Craighead perpetrated the outrage, but Cook called on the Capt. Blanton and told him he did all the whipping and would take all the responsibility. No action was taken by Civil Authorities.

July 30th, 1866 - At the riot which took place at the meeting of the convention in the city of New Orleans, La. on this date the following casualties occurred:

Freedmen killed . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34
Freedmen supposed to have been killed, not sense heard from . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Freedmen wounded severely . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 79
Freedmen wounded slightly . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40
Freedmen supposed to have been wounded but in whose cases no absolute facts were obtained . . . . . . . . 20

The above is the number of killed and wounded as far as the same could be ascertained. It is believed many more persons were killed. Numerous inquiries having been made respecting freedmen who have been missing since the riot, and the efforts made to track them proved unsuccessful.

August 1st, 1866 - Capt. N. B. Blanton, Sparta, reports Cuff Canara, freedman, and Dan Docking, white, had a quarrel because Docking had twice committed a rape on the freedman's wife. Canara started to Agent of Bureau, was tracked by hounds for ten miles and fired on by Dan Docking, Norman Docking and John Palmer. Shot in left side of back & (illegible) finally reached agent, having killed 3 out of 4 of the dogs. Warrants issued for arrest of parties but they have not been found, and from statement of people does not think they will be arrested, the people appearing to think the freedman had committed the greater crime by killing the dogs, than the man who shot him.

August 1st, 1866 - Lieut. W. H. Cornelius, St. Martinsville, reports John Lewis, freedman, was sent by a white man, Lucien Holmes, to a piece of woods to find a stray horse. Not since been heard of, supposed to have been hid murdered and body hid. Civil Authorities show no disposition to investigate.

August 10th, 1866 - Capt. S. W. Purchase, Bienville, reports that on 6th August Terence ?Toaps (white) shot a freedman (Lemuel), seriously wounding him. On Oct. 14th by order of Genl. Sheridan, Lieut. Horn with a squad of men arrested the accused.

August 13th, 1866 - Captain N. B. Blanton, Sparta, reports Green Jones & John Gordon (freedmen) were taken from their houses and given 300 lashes each with a leather strap. Henry Clay and Felix Dunn, freedmen, were also taken out but escaped after being fired at. Robert & John Carr (white) are believed to be the perpetrators. Jones had made himself obnoxious by celebrating loud on his own account. No arrests made.

August 13th, 1866 - Captain N. B. Blanton, Sparta, reports Nelson King, freedman in employ of John Watts near Ringgold was taken from his house at night, given about 400 lashes & badly cut up. Was then told he must leave the place & that he would be taught he was not free. John Carr, Robert Carr and Dr. Walker (all white) supposed to be the guilty parties. No action taken by Civil Authorities.

August 15th, 1866 - Captain N. B. Blanton, Agent Sparta, Bienville Parish, reports Julia Heath, colored girl 16 years old and who was in the family way, was whipped by Mrs. Tally of Arcadia for sitting down to pick brear from her foot. Julia ran off, when Mr. Tally brought her back, whipped her and made his wife whip her again. Joseph Glover (white) threw brickbats at her. The girl's mother went to Mr. Tally's store to see about it & was ill treated. Also the father, Carey Heath, who Mr. Tally beat & threatened. No action of any kind taken.

August 17th, 1866 - Bvt. Major Brown, Vidalia, reports a Negro (illegible) went to house of (illegible) white man and demanded whiskey. On refusal shot the white man dead and then outraged mother in presence of her children. Murderer arrested, tried, convicted and hung.

August 19th, 1866 - Capt. N. B. Blanton, Sparta, Bienville Parish, reports Frank Brown, freedman, on a visit to Arcadia from Munson was taken to the woods by Daniel Brown & Charles Herron (white), badly beaten and cut up, told if he reported it he would be killed. Daniel Brown boasted to a grocery keeper in Arcadia that they gave him 345 lashes. No action taken.

August 20th, 1866 - Bvt. Major Willaner, Alexandria, reports a freedman was shot by a white man named Butler. Inquest held finding against Butler. Sheriff unable to find or arrest him.

August 20th, 1866 - Bvt. Major S. G. Willaner, Alexandria, reports H. W. Coyle (white) charged with beating freedmen with his fist till he died. Post mortem examination showed deceased died of heart disease. Accused bound over till next session of District Court.

August 31st, 1866 - Lieut. W. S. Collins, Marksville, states William Wells (white) committed a most murderous and unprovoked assault with a knife on Lewis Wilson (freedman). Arrested, held to bail on $250. Not being able to procure it, bail was reduced to $200. Accused was then allowed to go (on a pledge of his employer) to get security. At last accounts he was at liberty without bail. At this same court a freedman was committed to jail on some trifling offense being unable to procure $500 bail.

September 1st, 1866 - Bvt. Maj. James Cromie, Natchitoches, reports George Washington (freedman) was attacked by Narcisse Rachel, ----- McElroy, Azenea Charlerille and Abness Marcom (white men) who tied his hands to his sides and gave him 500 lashes with a cowhide. Warrants issued for arrest of parties. No arrests made.

September 14th, 1866 - Lieut. Col. Martin Hood, Shreveport, reports that a party of freedmen consisting of George Fields, his wife, five children and four other freedmen moving from "Reche" DeSoto Parish to Shreveport, while encamped for the night, were beaten, robbed of their effects consisting of a wagon, four mules and a horse, furniture &c. by Asmas Hollingsworth, Giles Gears, Hammond Scott, Frank Brantley and two other ruffians. After being robbed were beaten & driven along the road. Civil Authorities took no notice of affair (Hollingsworth shot freedmen ?Tawes, see agents report of May 12th, 1866).

September 25th, 1866 - Lieut. M. H. Cornelius, Agent St. Martinsville, states that Abraham White, freedman, was shot by some person at his home at Fausse Point about 9 p.m., (illegible) by buckshot entering his hands and left arm. No knowledge of who it was, had no difficulty with any person.

September 30th, 1866 - Lieut. R. Folles, Algiers, reports Thomas Foster, freedman, was arrested on charge of stealing which could not be sustained and was then convicted of striking police officer, which freedman could prove by three witnesses he didn't do so. Fined $5.00 and costs $1.50 = $6.50 by Justice Brownlee. Justice refused to reconsider decision. Warrant was issued by Comr. Shannon for his arrest when he feigned sickness until matter was forgotten.

October 2nd, 1866 - Lieut. A. S. Collins, Marksville, reports ?Simeon Bordelon, freedman, was taken from his house at night by some 15 or 20 white men, tied, gagged, taken to the woods and whipped because he would not pay a debt he had already paid, and which was contracted while he was a slave. The whites say he was insolvent and cursed somebody. The Grand Jury after some little opposition allowed him to enter his complaint and eight of the guilty parties were arrested indicted but have never been arrested. Bordelon was then accused of stealing a knife and fork but owing informality in indictment was (discharged) quashed on Feb. 10th, 1867. Agent reports up to this time none of the parties have been arrested by the Civil Authorities nor will they be.

October 6th, 1866 - Lieut. A. S. Collins, Martinsville, reports a freedman was cruelly robbed and murdered by one Chambers (white) in the Parish. Accused indicted by Grand Jury and it was reported he had left the County. With the assistance of the father of deceased he was arrested and lodged in jail to await trial as he seems to be a stranger without friends. He may be punished but it will be the first instance in this parish.

October 10th, 1866 - Captain P. ?Nerein, Opelousas, reports a freedman, Dick Bell, was found murdered in the road to Ville Platte about 6 miles from Opelousas. No clue to the guilty parties.

October 10th, 1866 - Bvt. Maj. S. G. Willaner, Alexandria, reports a freedman was shot and dangerously wounded by a white man in Rapides parish recently. The Civil Authorities took the matter in hand, no arrests made.

October 10th, 1866 - Lieut. R. Folles, Algiers, reports Mr. E. White placed a colored boy, George Washington, on the levee to watch the cane field. Starting Shortly after passing by and seeing something move in the grass, which he supposed to be a snake, fired at it and wounded the boy in the foot. Mr. White claimed it was accidental and agreed to take care of the boy 'til he recovered.

October 17th, 1866 - Captain J. ?Amrean, Opelousas, reports Silvey Soilean (freedwoman) was badly wounded and her son killed at Grande Prairie by Lewis Fontenot & others. No arrests made. Although warrants are in the hands of the Sheriff for these persons arrest. (Fontenot) told the judge who issued them that the Sheriff had assured him (Fontenot) that he (the Sheriff) would not arrest him.

October 19th, 1866 - Bvt. Major James Cromie, Natchitoches, reports John Blackburn (freedman) wouldn't sell his share of a crop to Thomas Freeman (white), his employer. As freedman was returning from field with his basket of cotton on his head, Freeman took his gun and shot him dead. Arrested and committed to trial for willful murder, the accused escaped from jail on Feb. 8th, 1867 and hasn't since been heard of.

November 4th, 1866 - W. H. R. Hangre, Agent Madisonville, reports two shots were fired into Colored Methodist Church by some unknown parties. No persons injured.

October 27th, 1866 - Lieut. W. H. Webster, Columb, Agent Parishes of Franklin & Caldwell at Columbia, La. reports among cases report referred to the Civil Authorities the following -----

A white man arrested charged with assault and battery on two freedmen by shooting at them. Although the testimony was entirely against the accused, the jury brought in a verdict of "NOT Guilty."

A freedman at a camp meeting taken from some distance into the woods, his screams and cries were heard, it is supposed he was murdered or severely whipped or murdered.

A freedman going to see the Agent of the Bureau without Planter's permission was shot and badly wounded in the back. In this case white men were brought to impeach freedmen's testimony against planter.

Some officers in making an in arresting of a freedman, beat his wife and another woman in a shameful manner and kicked them out of doors, took two revolvers from freedman and when asked for them pretended they had been lost.

November 7th, 1866 - Lieut. G. A. Ladlow, Agent Houma, La., reports that Mr. H. Bonvillian sent freedman Ira Washington, freedman, to Mr. Bodin to inform Bodin his cattle were in Bonvillian's sugar cane. Boldin shot at freedman. Case referred to Justice, Captain Ladlow ordered to see justice done.

November 7th, 1866 - Chaplain E. Gurin, Agent Carrollton, reports Thomas Brown, freedman, shot by gaoler Cornelius McGregor in a most unjustifiable manner, died two days afterwards. Though warrant for arrest was issued by Justice of Peace immediately after rendition of verdict by Coroner's Jury, he is still at large, vigorous efforts not having been made for his arrest. On Dec. 31st accused had absconded.

November 17th, 1866 - Bvt. Major Brown, Vidalia, reports freedman killed on Palaquinta Plantation by a white man named Thomas Ladgate during absence of owner of plantation. Accused in custody awaiting examination before Civil Authorities.

November 30th, 1866 - Lieut. Joseph Burns, Agent at Munroe, reports a freedman shot by W. McDonald (white) of Ouachita Parish, who was arrested and bound over on $800.00 bonds to appear for trial at next term of court.

November 30th, 1866 - Captain J. Amrean, Opelousas, reports Julien Gallot, freedman, was shot through the head and killed. Occurrence took place several miles from Opelousas. Murderer arrested and confined in jail.

December 25th, 1866 - Lieut. Ira R. McClary, Agent Parish St. Bernard & Plaquemine, reports that Washington Rehan, freedman, was shot and mortally wounded while standing at the bar of a coffee house by the Bar Keeper, Santiago Artialla, without any provocation whatever. Freedman had been showing his pistol to another man who spoke of purchasing it but finally laid it down on the counter when said Artialla picked it up, cocked it & pointed it at freedman and said "look out" and fired, mortally wounding freedman who died soon after from effects of wound. Coroner's jury decided that freedman came to his death by accidental discharge of pistol in the hands of Artialla. Civil Authorities taken no action in the matter.

December 6th, 1866 - Bvt. Maj. S. W. Purchase, Vermillionville, reports Benjamin Perkins (freedman) had been to New Iberia on business after dark with his teams, stopping at the house of Joseph Despeans (white), Baker in Vermillionville. He sent his companion into the shop to buy a loaf of bread. When ready to start again, some person (it is believed Despeans) opened a window and shot at him, breaking his arm and otherwise injuring him. At an examination before Civil Court, sufficient evidence could not be brought to convict any person of the outrage.

December 6th, 1866 - Bvt. Major B. B. Brown, Vidalia, reports a freedman, a desperate burglar, was shot and killed by a Deputy Sheriff while trying to arrest him. Coroner's jury returned verdict of justifiable homicide.

December 8th, 1866 - Bvt. Major Jas. Cromie, Natchitoches, reports Bill Stone, a freedman, was shot at three times by Wiley Weaver (white) and stabbed six times by ------ Burke (white). Warrants issued for arrests.

December 31st, 1866 - Bvt. Maj. S. G. Willaner, Rapides Parish, reports a freedman killed another freedman here recently. Case referred to Civil Authorities.

January 5th, 1867 - E. W. Dewess, Agent at Sparta, Bienville, reports give men have been murdered in the Parish during the last six weeks, two white men and three freedmen. The Civil Authorities pretend that they wish to try to find the murderers, but there are very few white men in the Parish who could not point them out. The freedmen were murdered near Arcadia. The lives of Union men and freedmen are not safe here, and will not be until the people are deprived of their firearms. Her At Arcadia I was told if I was the white man's friend I was safe - if not I had better not come there anymore.

January 10th, 1867 - Lieut. Col. Martin Flood, Shreveport, reports he is informed that planter's patrol on the line between their district and Panola County, Texas to prevent freedmen coming into Louisiana, that the freedmen are trying to escape from Texas as if from death, very few have been paid for last years work. Bateman and his gang rob, plunder & kill without molestation. Four freedmen have been reported shot within the last ten days and four times that number robbed. No security for freedmen. Civil Authorities either cannot or does not arrest offenders, if troops are sent it will be useless to send Infantry, requests Cavalry may be sent.

On January 20th, 1866 the same office reports D. Kother, a citizen of Shelbyville, Texas reported to him that during his absence from his plantation parties came to the plantation there and cruelly beat his freedmen employed by him. There being no troops to send, Kother returned home, requesting if he was lynched his family and freedmen might be protected. G. W. Musgraves, Lt. Col. USA corroborates statement of Mr. Kother and states he heard citizens speaking of the whipping of the freedmen employed by Kother, and threatening that if Kother were the means of troops being brought into that County they would hang him as soon as the troops were gone.

January 1st, 1867 - Lt. Capt. Folles, Algiers, reports Richard Taylor, co freedman, complained that Jacob Gross had shot his dog and then fired two shots at himself, wounding him slightly in arm. When Gross had finished firing, freedman knocked him down & took pistol from him. Gross then charged freedman with attempting to kill him & had him & his wife arrested. Case referred to US Comr.

February 11th, 1867 - Mr. Frank Morey, Agent at Munroe, reports that Helen Lewis, freedwoman, was beaten and shot at by Thomas Hardy (white) of Ouachita Parish, a notorious scoundrel who has several charges to answer at the next term of court. Accused was discharged after examination and tried before O'Debery, J. P. The case will be presented to the Grand Jury at the April term of court.

February 13th, 1867 - Captain J. Amrean, Opelousas, reports that John Keller, freedman, who lived with Actheon Carriere, Constable of town of Washington, asked permission to go and see his wife who was sick. His employer refused, threatening to shoot him if he left the house. About two days afterwards, his wife sending for him again, Keller took his employer's horse, was folled followed by Carriere, who coming up to freedman shot him five times, then tied him on a horse and brought him back to Washington repeating striking him repeatedly on the way with a heavy stick. Keller made no resistance and from his dying declaration it is a clear case of murder.

February 20th, 1867 - Bvt. Maj. S. W. Purchase, Agent Vermillionville, reports that Edward White (freedman) employed by Dr. F. A. Picouette, was found brutally murdered and his body thrown down an old well. Coroner's jury returned an open verdict but at Agents suggestion, another investigation was to be held. On March 4th, Major Purchase reports another investigation had been held resulting in the arrest of Bellizier Morrow and Dirlosee Comeda (whites) who have been committed to jail to await their trial at the next meeting of the Dist. Court.


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