Community Leaders Announce Plan for Memorial for Victims of 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre at Historic Church

Tiffany Crutcher (left) and the Rev. Robert Turner look at artist’s renderings during the announcement of a 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre memorial at the Vernon AME Church in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday, May 17, 2019. MATT BARNARD/Tulsa World

A Tulsa community leadership group unveiled plans for a forthcoming project that would honor and memorialize victims of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre on the grounds of a historic city church.

The Tulsa Community Remembrance Coalition announced Friday that it is working with the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Alabama, for an outdoor memorial to be erected at Vernon African Methodist Episcopal Church, 311 N. Greenwood Ave., to further inform the public about the events that occurred nearly a century ago.

“For far too long it was kept a secret,” the Rev. Robert Turner of Vernon AME Church said in reference to the massacre, which is also referred to as the Tulsa race riot. “The slaughter, the looting, the murder and massacre of innocent children, women, and men has left a stain on this city.

“If we truly seek to remove that stain and truly want to be one Tulsa, it is incumbent that we expose that secret.”

The coalition also will lead a project to collect soil from sites that have been documented as areas where lynchings took place. That initiative, organizers said, is scheduled to take place this summer.

The group confirmed that that aspect of the project is independent of the city of Tulsa’s intention to search for mass graves related to the massacre.

The project also includes a historical marker to be placed on the church’s grounds that recognizes Black Wall Street. The marker is expected to be unveiled on Sept. 14.

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Source: Tulsa World