The Atlanta City Council last year approved legislation to put a historical marker at 112 Courtland St., next to First Congregational Church of Atlanta, to memorialize the 1906 Atlanta Race Massacre. The marker is one of many by the Equal Justice Initiative and the Fulton County Coalition to document lynchings and terror against Black people. (Dyana Bagby)

Over four days in September 1906, dozens of Black people were killed and hundreds more assaulted in downtown Atlanta and surrounding neighborhoods in what is known as the largest outbreak of racial violence in Georgia’s history.

The 1906 Atlanta Race Massacre was sparked by a heated political gubernatorial campaign as candidates Hoke Smith, former publisher of the Atlanta Journal, and Clark Howell, editor of the Atlanta Constitution, stoked the fears and resentment of white people as Black people gained more voting rights and business success. The newspapers printed sensational stories of Black men attacking white women and also published stories about lynchings and white supremacist groups.

This year marks the 117th anniversary of the Atlanta Race Massacre. Numerous groups such as the Fulton County Remembrance Coalition and National Center for Civil and Human Rights continue to work to remember the history and honor the victims.

Some events taking place this weekend to commemorate the 1906 Atlanta Race Massacre:

Thursday Sept. 21

“Perseverance: The Response of Black Business and Women to Atlanta’s Race Massacre”

6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m

Emory School of Law, 1301 Clifton Road (Parking in the Gambrell Parking Deck)

Presented by the Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys and The Coalition to Remember the 1906 Atlanta Race Massacre.

Free and open to public.

Saturday, Sept. 23

1906 Atlanta Race Massacre: Community Symposium

11 a m. – 4:30 p.m.

Auburn Avenue Research Library, 101 Auburn Ave.

Free and open to public, register here for free box lunch.

The discussions will include representatives from the Metro Atlanta Chapter of African American History and Genealogy Society (AAHGS); Dr. Karcheik Sims-Alvarado, chair of the Fulton County Reparations Task Force; and Dr. Susan Glisson, executive director of William Winter Institute for Racial Reconciliation. The keynote will be delivered by Dr. Daniel Black, professor of African American Studies at Clark Atlanta University and author of “Black on Black: On Our Resilience and Brilliance in America.” 

The symposium is co-sponsored by Culture Centers International, Southern Truth & Reconciliation, and the Fulton County Remembrance Coalition.

Sunday, Sept. 24

Remembrance and beautification at the historical marker for Zeb Long, who was lynched in East Point during the 1906 Atlanta Race Massacre.

1 p.m. – 3 p.m., Sumner Park, 1889 Lexington Ave East Point, GA 30344

— Also on Sept. 24, (re)Defining History: Uncovering The 1906 Atlanta Race Massacre a half-hour documentary, airs at 7:30 p.m. on WABE TV (PBS/Ch. 30) and will be available to stream nationwide on wabe.orgPBS Passport, and WABE’s YouTube channel on Oct. 1.

Equitable Dinners Atlanta and Out of Hand Theater will facilitate dinners and discussions Sept. 23-24 at metro Atlanta locations to commemorate the 1906 Atlanta Race Massacre. Register for the dinners at the location link.

Virginia-Highland Church

6 p.m. – 9 p.m., 743 Virginia Ave. NE. This is a potluck meal. Click here for information on what to bring.

National Center for Civil and Human Rights

5 p.m. – 8 p.m.

100 Ivan Allen Jr. Blvd. NE

Equitable Dinners Atlanta


5 p.m. – 7 p.m.

The Wren’s Nest

6 p.m. – 8 p.m. 

1050 Ralph David Abernathy Blvd. SW

Dyana Bagby is a staff writer for Reporter Newspapers and Atlanta Intown.