Data News Staff Edited Report
In these times of being “woke” and where calls for justice and equality are being heard all over America; a great book explores the Tulsa Riot of 1921. It was a time where Blacks, following slavery began to build an economy and created one of several “Black Wall Street” with thriving businesses.
As seen in numerous new reports recently; it’s been 100 years since the Tulsa Race Massacre — one of the worst episodes of racial violence in U.S. History; where an armed White mob attacked Greenwood, a prosperous Black community in Tulsa, Okla., killing as many as 300 people. What was known as Black Wall Street was burned to the ground.
In addition to the loss of life, there was more than $1 million in property losses that would amount to more than $20 million today. Before the massacre, the Greenwood District was considered one of the most affluent all-Black communities in the country, a mecca for African American culture, business, and prosperity.
The Nation Must Awake, published for a wide audience for the first time, is Mary E. Jones Parrish’s first-person account, along with the recollections of dozens of others, compiled immediately following the tragedy. With meticulous attention to detail that transports readers to those fateful days, Parrish documents the magnitude of the loss of human life and property at the hands of White vigilantes. The testimonies shine light on Black residents’ bravery and the horror of seeing their neighbors gunned down and their community lost to flames.
In the book, Parrish described her heroic escape from the angry mob and her risky return to Greenwood to document the truth of what happened. She included photographs and eyewitness accounts from others, and also recounted the myriad obstacles to rebuilding imposed by the City of Tulsa. In the appendix of the red hardcover, Parrish recorded the value of the property destroyed or taken, including her own two apartments and the secretarial school she operated.
But the book is more than just a historical account. It’s also Parrish’s plea for America to live up to the Promise of Democracy, something in light of the recent events of the nation still grapples within the 21st Century.
Preorder “The Nation Must Awake” today at http://www.blackbookstore.