Illinois congress members seek 1908 Race Riot designation
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Illinois members of Congress are seeking National Historic Monument status for the Springfield site of the 1908 Race Riots.
Republican U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis tells The (Springfield) State Journal-Register that he and Democratic Sen. Tammy Duckworth will introduce legislation to memorialize the crisis in Abraham Lincoln’s hometown which led to the forming of the NAACP.
It’s set for a block-long stretch downtown where city officials and the NAACP are planning a memorial. A 2014 railroad construction project unearthed the remains of homes burned during the rioting and artifacts from a mid-1800s immigrant neighborhood.
The conflagration raged from Aug. 14-16, 1908. Two black men suspected of attempting to rape white women were secreted out of town. A furious lynch mob ransacked black neighborhoods, burning homes and killing residents.