Monthly Archives: June 2020

Bill before Congress now to make lynchings a federal crime started in Tarboro 120 years ago

George Henry White

There’s a bill before Congress now that would, for the first time in American history, make lynching a federal hate-crime. The bill has passed the House by a vote of 410 to 4. In the Senate, ninety-nine senators favor it, but a senator from Kentucky is blocking unanimous consent for immediate enactment. It’s an emotional issue at the center of national affairs in a time of crisis. 

If the bill is enacted, it would be the first federal anti-lynching law. But it is not the first anti-lynching bill. 

The first anti-lynching bill was introduced in Congress on January 20,1900, by Representative George Henry White of Tarboro, North Carolina. 

White’s home is just a few blocks off Main Street at about St. Patrick and Granville Streets. You could say that’s where today’s anti-lynching legislation began.

You could say it started on Granville Street.