Family of Marion lynching victims opposes proposed memorial

June 7, 2018

Relatives of two black men who were lynched in 1930 say they oppose a proposed memorial honoring the two victims.

The Chronicle Tribune of Marion reported that 19-year-old Abram Smith and 18-year-old Thomas Shipp were accused of killing a white man and raping a white woman 88 years ago. They were dragged from the Grant County Jail by a mob and hanged from a tree on the Grant County Courthouse lawn.

A photo of the lynching has since become infamous. It shows the men’s bodies hanging from a tree surrounded by a crowd of white onlookers, some smiling.

Huntington University professor Jack Heller approached county commissioners with the idea of creating a memorial.

Pansy Bailey is Shipp’s first cousin. She said a memorial isn’t necessary because “the only people it should really matter to is the family.”


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