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At the Lynching Tree

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by Sarah Withrow King

As the sun set and the wind picked up, we stood under this tree and held a memorial for four men who were lynched here. Beaten and hung. Murdered.

We dug soil from the ground that once absorbed their blood, and we prayed, wept, and sang. We remembered the mothers of the men and boys killed there in 1897 and thought of the mother of Jesus, who stood at the foot of the cross as her son was beaten and hung. Murdered.

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