Duties, Pleasures, and Conflicts: Essays in Struggle

Duties, Pleasures, and Conflicts: Essays in Struggle

Duties, Pleasures, and Conflicts: Essays in Struggle

Duties, Pleasures, and Conflicts: Essays in Struggle

Excerpt

There is a photocopy of a press photograph on my desk before me. I have just returned to my home away from home, in France, and don't remember or perhaps never knew who sent it, or for what reason. It is a photograph of five black men hanging from a tree--they seem, still, to be turning in the wind--and it was taken in Sabine County, Texas, on June 15, 1908. It is accompanied by a poem which I beg the reader's indulgence to quote in full:

The Dogwood Tree

This is only the branch of the Dogwood tree;
An emblem of WHITE SUPREMACY!
A lesson once taught in the Pioneer's school,
That this is a land of WHITE MAN'S RULE.
The Red Man once in an early day
Was told by the Whites to mend his way.

The negro, now, by eternal grace,
Must learn to stay in the negro's place.
In the Sunny South, the Land of the Free,
Let the WHITE SUPREME forever be.
Let this a warning to all negroes be,
Or they'll suffer the fate of the
DOGWOOD TREE.

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