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Rosewood Massacre: Fiction & Fact

Before we get to what has been labeled 'The Rosewood Massacre' (beginning Jan. 1st thru the 7th, 1923), I believe it's first necessary to point out two things: 1) Between 1900 and 1964, the total number of American initiated racial riots against African-Americans is only 26 (at least, that's all I could find). And of those 26 ... 20 were a direct result of either an African-American sexual assault on an American female or the murder of an American (usually a police officer); 2) beware of 'black versions' to the Rosewood riots, which are seemingly designed and calculated to eliminate, or mitigate, the accountability of the black race in creating these riots (there were two separate mob attacks in Rosewood, spanning non-consecutive days).

Now let's get to the 1923 Rosewood massacre : Fiction & Fact

Fiction: The town of Rosewood in 1923 was an entirely African-American town and boasted a population of about 300 or more.

Fact: Rosewood was described as "mostly African-American", therefore, there were some Americans living in the community. In the book The Chronological History of the Negro, a far left-leaning, pro-integration recounting of African-American experiences from the 1700s and up until 1968, tells us there were "six buildings" burned down in the town (the town had just recently been vacated due to news of impending mob violence). And after the buildings were burned, then, a few days later, "the 12 remaining structures" were burned. These 12 structures were obviously residences (homes) in the African-American part of the small community. Doing the simple math here, it tells us that most likely there were only 12 African- American families in Rosewood. The typical African-American family back then would have consisted of about six or seven. That would put the African-American population of Rosewood at approximately 80, with the adult male population at around 12 to 14.

Note: Despite Wikipedia's claim (produced from a thoroughly unreliable source, African American Maxine Jones) that Sumner and Rosewood had a combined population of "344 blacks and 294 whites" there is no existing census data that I could find to support this claim. Rosewood shared a census tract with Sumner, so there is no way of knowing exactly how many people (white or black) lived in Rosewood. However, the "12 structures", or homes, in the black section gives a pretty accurate clue. Whites were likely about half or less of the black population in Rosewood, so that would put the white population at about 30 or 40 (6 or 7 families) ...and make the total Rosewood population ( white & black) around 120.


Fiction: African-American's in Rosewood lived in a thriving, blissful and self-sufficient community.

Fact: The 12 or so adult black males in Rosewood likely all worked full or part-time at the sawmill operations in the neighboring community of Sumner (about 3 times the population size of Rosewood, which apparently did have some blacks - no way of knowing how many). Sumner was less than 3 miles from Rosewood, so it was within walking distance. The only daily operating business in Rosewood was a small general store operated by an American named John Wright.

Self-Sufficient : Self-sufficiency would imply that Rosewood's 12 or so adult African-American males were not employed in any capacity by Americans . As I already pointed out, most likely all the males worked in the community of Sumner, working labor for no more than $1.00 a day (there was no federal minimum wage in 1923). Again, the fact that there was only one American-run store operating in Rosewood , tells us that no African-American male derived an income from a daily operating business in Rosewood. As further evidence of non-self-sufficiency, 'Rosewood Victims vs. State of Florida,' their study regarding incomes for African-American males tells us that there was, in addition to the sawmill work, money earned by some "trapping and hunting, and vegetable farming". Nothing in the report states Rosewood was a self-sufficient African-American community. Finally, for those of African descent in America in 1923, it was the Americans who were seen - as they always had been - as the source for jobs.


Fiction: From Wikipedia:

"South, Florida had imposed legal racial segregation under Jim Crow laws, requiring separate black and white public facilities and transportation.[6] Blacks and whites created their own community centers: in 1920, the residents of Rosewood were mostly self-sufficient. They had three churches, a school, a large Masonic Hall, a turpentine mill, a sugarcane mill, a baseball team named the Rosewood Stars, and two general stores, one of which was white-owned."

Fact: "Jim Crow laws" : South Florida, as well as the entire country, was actually operating under Plessy v. Ferguson (1896 Supreme Court decision allowing for the separation of the races). One distinct people living separate from another distinct people was the established norm in America at that time. It was also the established norm throughout human history. Blacks were a free people, free to build their own towns, their own cities and their own industries; or colonize a place in the vast expanses of unsettled land in America (e.g. the Mormons). Regarding the buildings in Rosewood, this has already been covered. There were "six buildings" burned. The quote above indicates there were seven structures in Rosewood that were none residences. The correct figure is this:: two churches (white and black); two schools (white and black); a likely abandoned turpentine mill ; and only one daily operating business in Rosewood, which was the general store operated by a white male (John Wright).


Fiction: The railroad stopped in Rosewood.

Fact: The railroad did not have a regularly scheduled stop in Rosewood in 1923.


Fiction: An American female, Mrs. Fanny Taylor, was in fact attacked and beat-up ... but made-up a story about an African-American male doing it. Why? Because the brutal attack was really perpetrated by her "white" male lover (i.e. she was having an affair) and she knew she would have to explain the bruises to her husband when he arrived home from work. Hence, the "made-up story".

Fact :

1.) On the day of the home invasion / assault, an African-American male, Jesse Hunter, had escaped from a prison work detail in the vicinity of Rosewood. The fugitive would have been penniless and, naturally, in need of money to get out of the Rosewood area. Strong-arming a young American female home alone would be an obvious source to obtain some quick money.

2.) The source for the story of the alleged "white guy" seen coming out of Fanny Taylor's home, came from an African-American female, Philomena Goins, who was 7-years-old at the time.According to her recollection, her grandmother, Mrs. Sarah Carrier (one of the ones who died in this "riot"), told her (when she 7-year-old) that she'd seen a white guy coming out of Mrs. Taylor's home on the day of the assault. Note: This version was reported to [white male] freelance journalist Gary Moore by Philomena Goins' son, Arnett Doctor, in 1982. Moore is essentially credited with creating the "new" Rosewood Riots version.

Let's not fail to remember two crucial things here. First, bloodhounds tracked the scent of a man from the white female's home where the assault took place, to a black man's home bordering Sumner and Rosewood (Sam Carter). Would a white male go to a black community and ask a black man for aid to escape? And the black man, not knowing what the white male was guilty of, would he assist him in his escape? or sacrifice his life for the white male when the posse came?

Second, the 'black versions' to Fanny Taylor being beat-up offers two possible scenarios: Scenario 1:: After the beating by her white lover, Fanny Taylor looks in the mirror and notices bruises she knows she cannot explain to her husband, so she and the white male cook-up a story where she frantically runs to the sheriff telling him a black man beat her and robbed her. Okay, if this is the scenario, why is the white male fleeing? He has nothing to worry about. He knows she's blaming a black man. Right ? It doesn't work. Scenario 2 :: The white male strikes Fanny Taylor. Furious, Fanny Taylor storms out of her house telling him she's going to the sheriff to report him. However, along the way, Mrs. Taylor decides against blaming the assault on the white lover and instead hurriedly cooks-up the story about a black man beating her. Okay, again, why would the white male be fleeing for his life? He has nothing to really fear. There were no domestic violence laws back then, so a female being struck by a male in a lover's quarrel would not be an arrestable offense. Now for the clincher. The white male would obviously realize, as Fanny Taylor is storming out of the house , who would have the BIGGER problem if she reported an assault to the sheriff. It's Fanny Taylor! She would reveal to everyone, including her husband, that' she is having an affair! And what would that mean in 1923? Scandal! Divorce! Ostracizing! In this scenario, Fanny Taylor could quickly figure out that it is she who has everything to lose , not her white lover. So under this scenario as well, the white male lover would not flee for this life.

As we can all plainly see, a plausible scenario cannot be created here to give a reason for the white male to flee Fanny Taylor's premises. So for people to rewrite the Rosewood riots and manufacture an affair, and all based "allegedly" on a 7-year-old girl's memory, revealed for the first time 61 years after the incident (!), is well beyond reason - in fact, it's completely ridiculous. This alleged affair is simply not to be believed. She was in fact ATTACKED by a black male.


Fiction: Six African-Americans, perhaps many more, were murdered; many being lynched. Also, sadistic white people actually cut off body parts of the blacks and took them home for souvenirs.

Fact: Four African-Americans died, two adult males and two adult females: Sam Carter; Mrs. Sarah Carrier; Jesse Hunter; Miss Lexie Gordon. There were no lynchings (hangings) in these "riots", which occurred over two non-contiguous days. None of the four blacks were dismembered for souvenir body parts.

Day 1, Jan.1st : A couple hours after the assault, an American posse with bloodhounds tracked a scent from Fanny Taylor's home in Sumner to the home of an African-American male, Sam Carter. This piece of information, which is beyond dispute, is of vital importance. Where did the bloodhounds get the scent they tracked to Mr. Carter's home? They got that scent from the clothes of Fanny Taylor that the African-American male left on it when he physically assaulted her. The bloodhounds, able to track a human scent up to 36 hours after it was left, had no trouble tracking the scent to Mr. Carter's place (no, these dogs where not bred by white people to be racists toward blacks). At Mr. Carter's home is where the scent stopped. The group of armed Americans, ergo, had no other conclusion to draw than Mr. Carter had met with and aided the fugitive to escape by wagon. A rope was tied around Mr. Carter's neck and he was threatened with being hanged if he didn't reveal what he knew. However, Mr. Carter remained uncooperative and, much to the consternation of the mob, an American (unknown ) shot and killed him with a single gunshot to the body (or head). Mr. Carter was left where he fell and the mob moved on (Mr. Carter was NOT hung).

From the official coroner's jury inquest, 1923:

"We the Jury after the examination of the said Sam Carter who being found lying Dead, find that the said Sam Carter came to his Death by being shot by Unknown Party so say we all."

Day 2, Jan 4th : In the evening hours, hearing rumors that the African-American fugitive was at a house in Rosewood, a small group of armed Americans (no way of unknowing how many) descended on the home of Mrs. Sarah Carrier (African-Americans). Two American males went to the front door and knocked loudly, demanding everyone inside come out. NOTE: This is where the known evidence of what follows ends. What did happen here, however, is really the most important related to the burning of the African-American homes in Rosewood. The two white males who knocked on the Carrier front door were fact MASSACRED. And it was this MASSACRE that inflamed the Americans … and set the stage for the torching of Rosewood.

Most Likely scenario: At the home of Sarah Carrier, two Americans, , Henry Andrews, 42, and C. P. "Poly" Wilkerson, 45, knocked on the front door and demanded everyone inside come out. The fugitive, Jesse Hunter, is inside and likely holding a gun on Sarah Carrier. (And how did Jesse Hunter get to the Carrier's home? There's only one way he could have got there: Black male Sam Carter [gunned down three days earlier] took him there by wagon to hide him). When Sarah Carrier opened the door the Negro fugitive ambushed the two Americans, murdering them at pointblank range. Gunfire immediately erupted from the posse and Mrs. Carrier was killed in a hail of bullets. The fugitive was also mortally wounded ; however, he still returned fire. After a period of time the posse members, running low or out of ammunition, and also not sure if the Negro fugitive was actually dead, decided to leave and return the next day. Upon returning the following day the two dead Americans are claimed and, inside the Carrier home, are two dead bodies: Sarah Carrier and an adult Negro male.

Note: There is no known source that has positively identified the adult African-American male found dead in the Carrier home. The black version to this event insists that the victim is Sylvester Carrier (son of Sarah Carrier). Naturally, this would create a scenario where the black man is simply defending his house and avenging the senseless slaughter of his dear mother by the sadistic and bloodthirsty white guys. However, a few question arise with this version: Why would members of the posse gun down Sarah Carrier for no reason, a woman some or many there were likely acquainted with? Why would Sylvester Carrier massacre two white males on his front porch that he likely knew for years? Why would Sylvester Carrier risk the lives of his mother and the children in the house ... by provoking a gunfight with a posse? In my opinion, the black version here (that Sylvester Carrier was defending his house) just doesn't seem logical. The only logical version that does fit is the one I gave you above i.e. the rumor was true about the fugitive being inside the Carrier home and he (Jesse Hunter) massacred the two innocent Americans.

Day 3, Jan. 5th. : A large group of Americans (no way of knowing how many) set fire to six buildings in the Negro section of Rosewood. These were not homes. No person (white or black) was killed or injured in this incident.

Day 4, Jan. 7th : To avenge the massacre of two innocent American males, Americans from nearby towns gathered in Rosewood and burned the remaining 12 structures - specifically the 12 African-American homes. An African-American female, who was apparently suffering from typhoid fever and was bedridden, was burned alive (or escaped the house but died of smoke inhalation) when her house was set afire. Most likely, the ones setting the fire were not aware she was inside.

Note: Despite Wikipedea's version that a black male was "shot in the face" and then "hung…", there is NO credible evidence to support this claim.


Fiction: Mean and sadistic white guys, for no reason whatsoever, shot Sylvester Carrier's beloved dog.

Fact: Every non-biased person should be able to deduce that the only source for the "shot dog" story was Arnet Doctor, son of Philomena Goins Doctor. The 'shot dog' appears for the first time in the "new" Rosewood version that was manufactured by Gary Moore, a white male "self-employed" (unemployed?) freelance writer, in 1982.

" [Philomena Goins] Doctor called her family members [after Arnet Doctor and Gary Moore's "new version of Rosewood was published in 1982] and declared Moore's story and Ed Bradley's television exposé were full of lies."


Naturally, the ONLY reason to interject the dog being shot into this event is to make the white males appear to be sadistic fiends. It makes it more believable then that these same guys would slaughter an innocent black female (Mrs. Sarah Carrier) when she opened her door. Bottom line, the "shot dog" story is not to be believed.


Fiction: One African-American, is known to have been forced to dig is own grave before he was killed. Another African-American male, Mingo Williams , minding his own business and doing some hunting, was gunned down when he was spotted by a some white males who were driving to Rosewood (Jan.7th).

Fact: The African-American male (some claim his name was James Carrier) being forced to dig his own grave and the African-American male shot for no reason while hunting (Mingo Williams), both of these incidences magically appear after 1982. There is NO existing credible evidence - that I can find - that an African-American male was forced to dig his is own grave … before he was murdered; or, that a group of Americans gunned down an African-American male out hunting. Both of these incidences, which, again, magically appear after 1982, should NOT be believed.

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there was a murder of a white schoolteacher which led to a murder of three blacks and the ku klux klan (kkk).

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Q: What happened in Rosewood in 1923?
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