Banished from Johnstown: Racist Backlash in Pennsylvania

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Author and journalist Cody McDevitt tells the story of one of the worst civil rights injustices in Western Pennsylvania history. In 1923, in response to the fatal shooting of four policemen, the mayor of Johnstown ordered every African American and Mexican immigrant who had lived in the city for less than seven years to leave. They were given less than a day to move or would face crippling fines or jail time and were forced out at gunpoint. An estimated two thousand people uprooted their lives in response to the racist edict. Area Ku Klux Klan members celebrated the creation of a “sundown town” and increased their own intimidation practices. Figures such as Marcus Garvey spoke out in Pittsburgh against it as newspapers throughout the country published condemnations.
ISBN: 9781467142748
Format: Paperback
Publisher: The History Press
State: Pennsylvania
Series: American Heritage
Images: 51
Pages: 224
Dimensions: 6 (w) x 9 (h)
Cody McDevitt is an award-winning journalist and the founder of the Rosedale Oral History Project, which is the basis for Banished from Johnstown: Racist Backlash in Pennsylvania. Recently, he released a compendium of firsthand accounts of veterans who fought in World War II called Answering the Call: Somerset County during World War II. He is also the coauthor of Pittsburgh Drinks: A History of Cocktails, Nightlife & Bartending Tradition, which is available on Amazon and in select bookstores locally. He lives near Pittsburgh and works for the Somerset Daily American.
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