SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — A new sculpture has been unveiled in Springfield to commemorate the racial violence that tore the city apart a century ago.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — A new sculpture has been unveiled in Springfield to commemorate the racial violence that tore the city apart a century ago. The bronze sculpture shows scenes from the riots in which white mobs terrorized Springfield’s Black residents in 1908. They burned down Black-owned homes and businesses and lynched two men. Several of the rioters were killed too. The sculpture is in two parts that resemble the chimneys left standing after homes burned to the ground. The violence in Abraham Lincoln’s hometown helped inspire the creation of the NAACP. Officials said Thursday that they hope the sculpture will remind people of what can happen when bigotry is allowed to flourish. Former Springfield NAACP director Kenneth Page said the sculpture is something positive rising from "the ashes of hate and intolerance." ______ Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.