On Nov. 16, the Orange County Community Remembrance Coalition (OCCRC) will host a a Soils Collection, Libation and Remembrance Ceremony to commemorate the 1898 lynching of young Manly McCauley.
Mr. McCauley was just 18 years old when he was lynched by a group of white men near the intersection of Hatch Road and Old Greensboro Highway in what is now Chapel Hill.
His offense: He was Black and had eloped with the white wife of his employer. His body was left hanging from a tree for ten days before his family was allowed to claim it.
In April 2018, the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) had the grand opening of the National Museum of Peace and Justice in Montgomery Alabama. The Museum is dedicated to the memory of the more than 4,000 victims of racial terror lynchings in the US from 1877 to 1950.
The central structure is a gallery with over 800 six foot tall steel monuments, each representing a county where one or more racial terror lynchings took place; the names of the victims are listed on the monuments. There is a monument for Orange County that lists Manly McCauley as having been lynched in 1898.
There are duplicates of each monument laid out like caskets on the grounds of the museum. The duplicate Monuments can be claimed by local communities after meeting certain criteria specfied by EJI.
OCCRC was formed by Renee Price and me in the fall of 2018, and we serve as co-chairs of the Coalition. The Chapel Hill Carrboro NAACP is one of 10 constituent organizations or entities that are a part of the Coalition. Our purpose is to educate and engage the public on the history of racial terror lynchings and its impact today. We do this in partnership with EJI and one of our goals is to ultimately retrieve the Orange County duplicate monument for installation in this area.
One of the steps necessary to claim the monument is the Soils Collection, Libations and Remembrance Ceremony described in the attached flier. The Libations and Remembrance Ceremony is open to the general public and all are encouraged to attend. It starts at 10 a.m.