The "Scottsboro Stories" blog reflects the writings, photographs, arrangements, opinions and musings of me, Garry L. Morgan, only. I do not represent the Scottsboro Boys Museum or the Scottsboro Multicultural Foundation - the parent organization of the Scottsboro Boys Museum. I receive no profit from this endeavor. This blog is for educational purposes and that of open expression about racial and sexual discrimination, institutional and personal racism and the deadliest war of all time - "The Culture War."


The Ledger: "Scottsboro, Ala., Museum Opens to Mark a Shameful Case "

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Black History Month 2015

Why Do We Need Black History Month?

An Alabama-based racial justice group is courting controversy for its plan to mark the locations where white mobs hung African-American men, women and children from trees and telephone poles in southern U.S. states for more than 70 years. The Equal Justice Initiative has compiled an inventory of 3,959 victims of “racial terror lynchings” that occurred in 12 Southern states from 1877 to 1950.

From the report - "...racial terror lynching was much more prevalent than previously reported."

African American Lynching Victims by State, 1877-1950
Alabama 326
Arkansas 503
Florida 331
Georgia 586
Kentucky 154
Louisiana 540
Mississippi 576
North Carolina 102
South Carolina 164
Tennessee 225
Texas 376
Virginia 76
Total 3959

Lynchings were not restricted to the south as shown by this 1930 lynching in Marion, Indiana.

(photo by G. Morgan)
Every Sunday in February - The Scottsboro Boys Museum and Cultural Center will present programs begining at 2:30 pm.  Presented in the community where the Civil Rights era as we know it today began in America. Experience historically significant events from nationally known writers and speakers. Location and directions: 428 W. Willow St., Scottsboro, Al., 35768

Eric Garner being strangled to death by NYC Police (fair use for non-profit news reporting - photo by Ramsey Orta, video )
A discussion on Race & Police:

A couple of other takes from Black Folk.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Martin Luther King, Jr. Speech at Stanford University, April 16, 1967 - "The Other America"

Martin Luther King's Final Speech: 'I've Been to the Mountaintop' 

Monday, November 10, 2014

2014 American Indian Heritage Month

Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute Poster for 2014
The Society of American Indian Government Employees (SAIGE) developed the theme for this year’s National American Indian Heritage Month observance products: “Native Pride and Spirit: Yesterday, Today and Forever.”

Mr. Robert Brown, DEOMI (Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute) illustrator, describes the artistic design of this year’s National American Indian Heritage Month Observance poster: “A people and their culture are often preserved and communicated through artifacts, ancient writing and art. I felt the featured items were inspiring representatives of the rich and lasting history of American Indian and Native Alaskan culture. The top and bottom borders were taken from a pictorial notation of an Ojibwa music board found in the archives of the Library of Congress. The bird carving from a single piece of wood is a rare war helmet from the Tlingit people of southeast Alaska. The helmet, rediscovered in December 2013 in the Springfield Science Museum archives, is one of approximately only 95 left in existence today. Beginning as protection for Tlingit warriors in battle, war helmets today serve the Tlingit as healing reminders of their rich and ancient history,” said Mr. Brown.

In accordance with Public Law 101-343, National American Indian Heritage Month honors the many contributions and accomplishments of American Indians and Alaska Natives. During November, we remember the legacy of the first Americans and celebrate their vibrant culture and heritage. Since the Revolutionary War, Native Americans and Alaska Natives have played a vital role in our country’s freedom and security. They proudly serve in all departments of the United States Government today.

From the Aleutian Islands to the Florida Everglades, American Indians and Alaska Natives have contributed immensely to our country's heritage. During National American Indian Heritage Month, we commemorate their enduring achievements and reaffirm the vital role American Indians and Alaska Natives play in enriching the character of our Nation.

In 1976, the United States’ bicentennial year, Congress passed a resolution authorizing President Ford to proclaim a week in October as “Native American Awareness Week.” On October 8, 1976, he issued his presidential proclamation doing so. Since then, Congress and the President have observed a day, a week or a month in honor of the American Indian and Alaska Native people. And while the proclamations do not set a national theme for the observance, they do allow each federal department and agency to develop their own ways of celebrating and honoring the nation’s American Indian heritage.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Life of the Law Presentation on The Scottsboro Trials - Emphasis on Clarence Norris, By Ashley Cleek, NPR

Scottsboro Defendants Under Guard. Photo-Fair Use for non-profit education and news.

Clarence Norris 
(photo-Fair Use for non-profit education and news reporting, source unknown)

In The Name Of The Father

"“A posthumous pardon causes people to think about the next case,” says John Miller, a lawyer and professor at the University of Alabama, who helped write the Scottsboro Boys Act.
   Miller was not pleased by all the loopholes, but he says, the Act isn’t simply a symbolic, feel-good moment for Alabama.
   “Are we going to [do] better by the next group of people that are brought up on charges when the evidence looks a little thin and when they come from a background that is not like that of the people sitting in the jury box or the prosecution sitting across the courtroom,” questions Miller.
   Clarence Norris Jr. was the only family member of the Scottsboro Boys to attend the pardoning. Norris feels responsible for his father’s memory and a lack of resolution. While learning about the case, Norris discovered that in the 1982, his father had petitioned the state of Alabama for reparations — 10,000 dollars in compensation for wrongful incarceration.
   “When I found that [my father] had tried and failed, I felt like this is something that I need to finish for him,” Norris explains. “Even though he is not here to benefit from it. I feel like [the state of Alabama] still owes him.”
   In Alabama, a wrongful conviction can be awarded $50,000 for every year of prison. So Norris and his sisters hired a lawyer and filed a case against the state of Alabama for $750,000 in reparations. They are the only family of all nine Scottsboro Boys who can be found.
   States across the U.S. address reparations differently. Alabama is one of only 17 states that have mandated a fixed amount per year of wrongful incarceration. But, in Alabama, the process of petitioning for reparations is strict. Only two people have ever received compensation.  According to the Alabama Attorney General’s Office the statute of limitations for reparations for Clarence Norris, has passed. Even the language of the very Scottsboro Boys Act says that a posthumous pardon cannot be used as evidence that the state owes anyone reparations." For more on this story go to:  (Fair use rights for non-profit education and news reporting.)


There is one problem with this article - Ms. Washington did not collect all of the pictures, nor memorabilia, many contributed in building the museum and the multi-cultural foundation. The full truth has not been told about the pardon, there was more that could have been accomplished. 

This writer believes the pardon should have been the way and means to establish a Race Relations state schools education program or to increase funding for indigent defense.
Alabama incarcerates minority peoples and the poor many times over the influential and white majority. 

Only through education may racial prejudices be overcame that have been taught and encouraged via peer pressure, in families and in the local culture. The state and it's glory seeking politicians have refused to put their money where it counts. Those supporting the pardon have failed to realize that there is a cure for the disease of racism through education. Apparently some are afraid that the cure might change the face of our future for the betterment of our culture.

Then, there is the other story which goes to the very heart and soul of Jackson County Alabama and the injustice of racism and those who make a stand against wrongful conduct and social injustice. The Murder of Sheriff Matt Wann, hopefully Ms. Cleek will revisit that issue in her investigations. 

The bottom line for that story is this - Shh, we have secrets and we do not want to tell the truth about our murdered Sheriff.. 

After research, study of local cuture, and inquiries, I believe Sheriff Wann was murdered because of his not allowing the Scottsboro Defendants to be lynched by the Klan mob. Motive - revenge for foiling the lynching. The lack of prosecution and allowing the escape of the alleged murderer of Sheriff Wann points to a crime which has not been prosecuted. The murder was a conspiracy involving Klan members, other law enforcement along with political officials of the time. 

An Ode to a Sheriff from "The Odes" in part,
A story of an Odd Fellow from the heart.
The restless wings of time hath brought
the parting moment near.
The bell that tolls the midnight chime,
will knell a glorious day-
The memory of a forgotten time,
shall never fade away.
Farewell ye Brothers true and bold!
This day to you shall be.
O'er prejudice and slander old;
The Day of Victory;
And they who barr'd our infant way
Shall cheer our mighty youth,
And own the noble power to-day,
Of Friendship, Love and Truth.
The story of Matt Wann is told,
So the "Pale Face" may n'er agin be so bold,
Thus-this story of murder is told.
Poem by Garry Morgan in part and in part from the Odd Fellows, "The Odes". 
The poem represents a murder and the lack of prosecution by past elements of our local society which supported the action of the Ku Klux Klan - the "pale face." 

Past unresolved criminal acts and racism sets the stage for current cultural exclusion of those who do not agree with status quo political extremism and facilitates threatening behaviors and harassment in today's local culture from political extremists.

It was and is through Federal Law such as the Voting Rights and Civil Rights Acts that racial discrimination was prosecuted. There is an element of political neo-fascist extremists who are attempting to end the advancements of the Civil Rights Movement. Glory seeking does not resolve the age old problems of the Culture War which continues today.