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The Tulsa Massacre

Our Shared History

May 31, 2021, marks the centennial of the Tulsa Race Massacre, one of the worst incidents of racial violence in US history—a riotous massacre that left hundreds dead and thousands homeless. The violence and destruction decimated a 40 square block area of the black Greenwood neighborhood in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

News reports of the massacre were largely squelched at the time it occurred, and I can vouch that the incident never appeared in my modern US history lessons in secondary school. This horrific incident is part of our common heritage, even though we may be repulsed by it. Neither removing it from history books nor ignoring its existence negate the fact that it occurred.

Racial justice, equity, and reconciliation can never be served unless we first acknowledge the truth. The West Linn Alliance recognizes the Tulsa Race Massacre as an atrocity that informs us of where we have been. We also believe that acknowledging the truth of our history as a nation is the first step towards carving an equitable path to the future.

More on the Tulsa Massacre can be found at:

Tulsa Race Massacre – https://www.history.com/topics/roaring-twenties/tulsa-race-massacre

1921 Tulsa Race Massacre: The Attack on Greenwood – https://www.tulsahistory.org/exhibit/1921-tulsa-race-massacre/

Dreamland: The Burning of Black Wall Street (CNN May 21 at 6 pm PT) – https://www.cnn.com/shows/dreamland-cnn-films