Survivors Of The Rosewood Massacre Received Reparations

Home burning in Rosewood
Abeni Jones
April 13, 2020

It’s a familiar story: in 1923, a white woman lied about being raped by a Black man. A violent mob then lynched Black residents and burned Rosewood, FL, a successful Black town, to the ground. The remaining residents fled; nobody was prosecuted.

But what happened 70 years later is completely unique.

In 1994, after a major campaign, the state of Florida awarded millions to the survivors of Rosewood and established a scholarship fund that continues today!

Sounds like justice, right? Not so fast.

The nine living survivors, children during the incident, ran for their lives in fear through a freezing swamp, their lives behind them engulfed in flames. Their families lost everything.

Can less than $150,000 each make up for generations of struggle to rebuild what was violently stolen?

Morgan Carter is a great-granddaughter of one of those children. She’s using the scholarship to study at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, earning a PhD in Pharmacy.

Some believe that her success will mean the triumph of our people’s resilience over the hatred of white supremacy. Others aren’t so sure.

Nothing can take away the pain of the past, least of all cash. To some, the idea is insulting. Would any amount truly be enough to make amends?

But it’s definitely a start, and if Rosewood is any indication, it CAN have some positive effect. Your move, America.

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