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Saturday, June 15, 2024

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Lynching Sites Project to commemorate two 19th century victims on Saturday

The Lynching Sites Project of Memphis (LSP), in partnership with the National Park Service, will host a new marker unveiling and dedication ceremony, followed by a “Courageous Conversation” at Collins CME Chapel Church, 678 Washington St. on Saturday, beginning at 10 a.m.

LSP is remembering two lynching victims, 1851 (victim name unknown) and Wash Henley, a U.S. colored trooper lynched in 1869. This will be LSP’s third lynching marker dedication and the fourth marker to be installed of the 36 known victims of lynching in Shelby County.

An interfaith service of lament and celebration will be held. The public will have an opportunity to participate in placing soil from the two lynching sites into jars for inclusion with a collection of jars from lynching sites throughout the United States. The collection is part of the Community Remembrance Project at the Legacy Museum founded by the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Ala.

During the Courageous Conversation, participants will consider racial “conciliation efforts” in Memphis and Shelby County.

Ceremony organizers have said they hope the historical markers will “ultimately become sites of remembrance, healing and conciliation, moving Memphis towards becoming the ‘Beloved Community.’”

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