previous next

“ [328] in Memphis but indicate the imperative necessity of education and Christianity (more pronounced) for the Southern States.”

This riot beginning Tuesday, May 1st, and continuing over two days, was brought on by the armed city police attempting to check the disorder of some discharged colored soldiers who had been drinking. This beginning resulted in killing that day from fifteen to twenty negroes, in burning eight negro schoolhouses and the churches where schools were taught, and also thirty-five of their private houses. The resulting excitement was so great that General Stoneman, the military district commander, put the city under strict martial law. The Memphis riot naturally excited the members of the American Missionary Association, for it had teachers and agents in every part of the South, and it greatly influenced the anniversary exercises. This riot, coupled with the others a short time before at New Orleans, where many black men perished and much property was destroyed, everyone feared would be extended to other cities.

Mr. Lewis Tappan, the senior vice-president of the association, and one of New York's most honored merchants and philanthropists, presided. After the preliminary exercises, including a grand missionary hymn, Mr. Tappan introduced me in very flattering terms. I closed a description of our work with an appeal for moral support, saying:

After we shall have exerted ourselves to the utmost there will be tasks which no Government agency will be able to accomplish. There will be poverty it cannot reach. There is already a strong feeling abroad against taxing the people to support the Southern poor; and there are also objections, alleged by good men, against

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Lewis Tappan (2)
George Stoneman (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
May 1st (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: