20 Targeted Attacks on Communities of Color by White Supremacists

Our mission is to shed light on the dark history of white supremacist violence and targeted attacks that have plagued communities of color throughout American history. These attacks specifically aimed at communities experiencing economic growth and striving for success, exposing the deep-rooted systemic racism and racial tensions that persist to this day.

Within this comprehensive list, we highlight instances where white supremacists deliberately targeted prosperous communities of color, seeking to obstruct their social and economic progress. These communities endured violence, property destruction, forced displacement, and tragic loss of life. Driven by racist animosity, economic competition, and a desire to maintain white dominance, these attacks underscore the urgent need to confront and dismantle systemic racism and white supremacy in our society.

By examining these selected examples, we recognize the recurring nature of such violence across different regions and time periods. They serve as a stark reminder of the ongoing struggles faced by communities of color as they strive for economic empowerment and challenge racial inequality. It is essential that we unite in our pursuit of justice, understanding, and a more inclusive future for all.

One notable theme throughout these events is the role of media coverage, which often portrayed people of color as threats to whites, fueling alleged violent uprisings and economic competition. Additionally, it is crucial to acknowledge the participation of police, firemen, and military personnel in instances of violence against people of color. These historical patterns provide insights into the origins of fragility mobs and the manipulation tactics employed by white supremacists to incite harm.

Join us as we unmask the dark history of targeted attacks on communities of color, transcending outdated political affiliations, and focusing on addressing the systemic issues that perpetuate racial violence and injustice. Together, we can create a more equitable and inclusive future for all.

Here are 20 examples of white supremacist violence and targeted attacks against communities of color, specifically those that were rising in wealth, listed in chronological order:

Wilmington Insurrection

(Wilmington, North Carolina, 1898):

White supremacists overthrew the biracial local government, targeting the prosperous African American community and destroying their businesses.

Atlanta Race Riot

(Atlanta, Georgia, 1906):

A white mob attacked African American residents, including those who were economically successful, resulting in deaths and the destruction of Black-owned property.

East St. Louis Massacre

(East St. Louis, Illinois, 1917):

White mobs targeted and attacked African American residents, including those who were employed in industrial jobs, leading to deaths and property destruction.

Tulsa Race Massacre

(Tulsa, Oklahoma, 1921):

The prosperous African American community of Greenwood, known as Black Wall Street, was attacked by a white mob, resulting in widespread destruction and loss of wealth.

Rosewood Massacre

(Rosewood, Florida, 1923):

A white mob set fire to the prosperous town of Rosewood, which had a majority African American population.

Detroit Race Riot

(Detroit, Michigan, 1943):

Racial tensions erupted into violence as white mobs targeted African American residents, including those who had secured well-paying jobs in the city’s industries.

Cicero Race Riot

(Cicero, Illinois, 1951):

A white mob in Cicero targeted an African American family who moved into a predominantly white neighborhood, resulting in violence and the family’s forced removal.

Los Angeles Watts Riots

(Los Angeles, California, 1965):

The predominantly African American neighborhood of Watts, which experienced economic struggles, erupted in riots in response to systemic racism and police brutality.

Ocoee Massacre

(Ocoee, Florida, 1920):

African American-owned properties were destroyed, and African American residents were forcibly expelled from the town due to white supremacist violence, preventing economic advancement.

Elaine Massacre

(Elaine, Arkansas, 1919):

White mobs attacked African American sharecroppers who were organizing for better wages and working conditions, resulting in the deaths of hundreds.

Zoot Suit Riots

(Los Angeles, California, 1943):

Mexican American youth, known as Pachucos, faced targeted violence from white servicemen and civilians due to racial tensions and perceived economic competition.

Detroit 1967 Rebellion

(Detroit, Michigan, 1967):

Widespread rioting and looting occurred in Detroit, including in African American neighborhoods where residents faced economic inequality and discrimination.

Columbia Race Riot

(Columbia, Tennessee, 1946):

African American veterans returning from World War II faced violence and destruction of their property by white mobs, leading to several deaths.

Clinton Massacre

(Clinton, Mississippi, 1875):

The Clinton Riot is a tragic example of racial violence and political tensions during the Reconstruction era in the United States. It underscores the challenges and dangers faced by African Americans seeking political representation and civil rights in the post-Civil War South.

Opelousas Massacre

(Opelousas, Louisiana, 1868):

A white supremacist paramilitary group attacked and killed dozens of African American Republican officeholders and freedmen, targeting their economic and political gains.

Orangeburg Massacre

(Orangeburg, South Carolina, 1968):

State troopers fired on African American student protestors at South Carolina State University, resulting in the deaths of three students and injuries to many others.

Memphis Riot

(Memphis, Tennessee, 1866):

Racial tensions erupted in violence as white mobs targeted African American residents, including those who had acquired property and businesses after emancipation.

Camilla Massacre

(Camilla, Georgia, 1868):

White supremacist groups attacked African American freedmen who were asserting their political and economic rights, resulting in multiple deaths.

Slocum Massacre

(Slocum, Texas, 1910):

A white mob attacked and killed African American residents and destroyed their property in a racially motivated act of violence.

Groveland Four

(Groveland, Florida, 1949):

Four African American men were falsely accused of raping a white woman, and violence erupted as a white mob sought to punish them, leading to deaths and destruction.

These examples shed light on the recurrent pattern of white supremacist violence and targeted attacks directed at communities of color, specifically those that were striving for economic success or asserting their economic and political rights.


Vic Stizzi


“A community that populates solidarity is a community that is protected, not policed.”