A considerable amount of the research material came from the Justice Department through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Some of this material will not be available to the general public for several years, unless specifically requested through the FOIA. The most important single document from the Justice Department was the FBI's final report on the lynching, The Abduction of Mack Charles Parker from the Pearl River County Jail, Poplarville, Mississippi, April 24-25, 1959 (cited as FBI Report). This comprehensive 370-page report details the FBI's investigation of the lynching. The Civil Rights Division, the Criminal Division, and the Executive Office for United States Attorneys, all within the Justice Department, also furnished information through the FOIA. The Criminal Division supplied FBI correspondence, letters, telegrams, and memos or reports about the lynching. In this study any letter, memo, press release, or report not otherwise identified came from the FOIA material from the Justice Department.
Record Group 60 in the National Archives contains the Justice Department's Criminal Division records through World War II. Within these files are letters, memos, newspaper clippings, and telegrams concerning almost every lynching since 1900. This material proved to be invaluable for developing a thorough background of lynching in twentieth-century America. It was through these records that the Parker lynching first came into consideration. The best known and most complete repository of lynching records is located in the Tuskegee Institute Archives. The Tuskegee lynching records contain press reports on virtually every lynching in America since 1888, when the records came into existence. The newspapers clipped generally were Southern, at least for the