The lynching of Wyatt Outlaw and the “Kirk-Holden War”

147 years ago today, chaos and hatred ruled the land:

On February 26, 1870, Graham town commissioner Wyatt Outlaw, an African American, was lynched by a band of Ku Klux Klansmen.

Outlaw served in the 2nd Regiment United States Colored Cavalry during the Civil War. In 1866, he attended the second freedmen’s convention in Raleigh and soon after organized the Union League, an organization that aimed to promote loyalty to the United States after the Civil War, in Alamance County, as well as a school and church. Outlaw became the target for a Klan mob because he was an effective leader, able to work with both races.

Aside from all the other considerations and concerns surrounding this cowardly act, we need to keep this in mind when recruiting and supporting candidates for state and local office. African-Americans are still severely under-represented in these positions of authority, and changing that will take all of us. We must also never forget what can happen if we don’t keep an eye on the General Assembly:



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