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The Militant, 31 August 1946

Mississippi Lynch Posse Seizes
14 Negroes in Savage Man-Hunt

From The Militant, Vol. X No. 35, 31 August 1946, p. 1.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for ETOL.


Legalized lynch gangs, led by police and deputies, are extending the reign of Jim-Crow terror and murders unleashed by the Southern white ruling class and its political agents like Talmadge, Bilbo and Rankin.

A Mississippi lynch “posse” of 300 race-hating whites, headed by county sheriffs, deputies and state police, early last week were combing the desolate swamplands near Magee with baying packs of bloodhounds.

Their prey were 17 Negro men, women and children who had fled for their lives to hide out from a fresh lynch assault.

The savage manhunt, recalling the days when the slavemasters tracked down escaped slaves, ended on August 21 when 14 Negroes were rounded up and confined in three Mississippi jails. The present fate of these Negro victims is unknown. Not even reporters have been permitted to see them. One of the victims is John Craft, 22, a Marine veteran.

The manhunt began on August 18 after deputies and state police went to the Craft family’s home to “investigate” an alleged dispute between Negroes and a white motorist on a highway nearby. The officers claimed they were “ambushed” and four whites shot.

In the lynch atmosphere, the Craft family and their neighbors, the Hubbards and Coopers, fled into the nearby swamp. L.T. Hubbard was first to be captured, after he was shot. Another Negro, who disappeared, is believed killed.

Now it is revealed that the four white men may have been wounded by other whites. The August 24 Jackson, Miss., Clarion-Ledger reports the possibility that the shootings resulted from “a smoldering feud between white families” in thickly-wooded Sullivan’s Hollow, where the Negroes also lived.

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