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AfriGeneas Writers Forum

Re: a lynching in Roane County 1863


Your post is fascinating.

First, have you checked all the local history books for an accounting of this story? Are there newspapers on microfilm that you can research? Were deaths recorded that far back in TN?

Second, who was Cooper's neighbor? How do you suppose that the respective slaves got in contact? I think 'given the nature of slavery' one would have to wonder about all relationships of all the peoples of that time. Azariah may or may not have any more significant relationship with his female slave than he did with any of his other inventoried property. If the lynched man was only blamed for the shooting of Mr. Cooper, then the circumstances could be almost anything....

I guess I'm saying that if this particular lynching is an historical fact, I would do an exhaustive research to learn the slave's name, how he came to possess a firearm, how slaves from neighboring farms and plantations communed, how folks from TN generally treated their slaves, and if he were innocent - how did he get in that predicament.

As an African American, if I were to read an historical fiction that was especially themed around a slave lynching, I would want it to be based on facts. I'm sensitive that way.

I'm comforted that you state that you'd like to know the facts first; interested in the difference between an event and the stories told about that event.

Please keep us posted on your research.

"Guided by the Ancestors"

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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