Jerico Shivers

Jerico Shivers

May 18, 1895 –
Tabernacle, Coffee County, Alabama

According to reports that appeared in newspapers around the nation, in the spring of 1895, Jerico Shivers and two other unnamed black men “enticed” three young, white daughters of a local Coffee County farmer from their home, “detaining” them in the woods for a week. Outraged at this violation of social norms, a month later, an organized posse dragged Shivers from a home in Tabernacle, took him to the nearby Pea River, tied a rope with a weighted sinker around his neck, and threw him into the river to drown. The brief, incomplete information in these reports, along with various spelling of the target’s name, including Jerido Shivers, is characteristic of much of the journalistic coverage of lynchings. The clear lack of concern with accuracy and completeness further underscores the mindset of dehumanization and harsh stereotyping that enabled and justified lynching and other racial violence.

“Alabama Negro Drowned by Mob of Whites,” Salt Lake Tribune, 20 May 1895, p. 1.

“Good Work Done,” Salt Lake Herald, 20 May 1895, p. 2.

“Mob of Lynchers Drown a Negro,” New York Herald, 20 May 1895, p. 5.

“Another Lynching,” Weekly Democratic Statesman (Austin, TX), 23 May 1895, p. 8.

“Alabama Lynchers Stopped It,” Red Lodge Picket (MT), 25 May 1895, p. 2.

“A Week’s News Condensed,” Washington Gazette (NC), 30 May 1895, p. 1.

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