Sunday, April 17, 2011

Leo Frank (April 17, 1884)

Leo Frank was lynched in Marietta, Georgia, on August 17, 1915, the only Jew to be lynched in America. The fact that he was a prominent, college-educated, northern-born Jew in this Southern town had clearly contributed to the injustice of his arrest and the sentiment at his trial. Jurors in fact had openly expressed their hatred of him.

A mob first kidnapped Frank from jail. “Townsfolk were proudly photographed beneath Frank's swinging corpse, pictures still valued today by their descendants.”

From Jewish Virtual Library:
"Southern Jewish historians note that Atlanta Jewry has still not fully recovered from the trauma of the Leo Frank case, and that the Temple bombing of the early 1960s simply reopened those wounds. Another legacy of the case is that, to help defend Frank, B'nai B'rith created its (now-independent) Anti-Defamation League. In 1986, the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles finally granted Leo Frank a posthumous pardon, not on the grounds that they thought him innocent, but because his lynching deprived him of his right to further appeal."

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