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Arkansas Peace & Justice Memorial Movement



Haven of Rest Cemetery

7101 W 12th St, Little Rock, AR 72204

Little Rock, AR, US, 72204

On May 4, 1927, a 38-year-old Black man named John Carter allegedly assaulted a white woman and her daughter near the intersection of Kanis Street and John Barrow Road in Little Rock. An armed posse quickly formed and searched the countryside for Carter. After finding him later that day in the vicinity of 12th Street and Rodney Parham Road, the angry mob hanged him from a telephone pole and shot him. A caravan of cars then dragged Carter’s mangled corpse through the streets of Little Rock, stopping at the intersection of 9th and Broadway, which at the time was the heart of the city’s Black business district.

For the next several hours, an estimated 5,000 white people rioted in the intersection and surrounding neighborhood. Carter’s body was set ablaze, with doors and furniture from neighborhood businesses and churches serving as fuel. As a result of warnings from the city’s black leaders, including Scipio A. Jones, no local residents ventured into the streets, and further bloodshed was avoided. Three hours after the rioting began, Governor John Martineau deployed the Arkansas National Guard to the scene, and upon arrival, they found a member of the mob directing traffic with a charred arm that had been broken off of Carter’s body. Soon thereafter, the crowd dispersed. The next day, the police detained a boy on Main Street for selling pictures of John Carter’s lynched body for fifteen cents a copy.

On May 2, 2020, APJMM will join the descendants of John Carter and Lonnie Dixon to erect historic marker & collect soil at the approximate site of the lynch of John Carter. This will be followed by New Orleans-style Second Line procession from Philander Smith College to the intersection of Ninth and Broadway Streets where there will be a ceremony renaming the intersection John Carter Square. This will be following by an afternoon community remembrance festival inside the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center.

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