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Racial Violence in the United States Since 1660

Running the Negro Out of Tulsa, June 1, 1921
Image Ownership: Public domain

Regrettably racial violence has been a distinct part of American history since 1660. While that violence has impacted almost every ethnic and racial group in the United States, it has had a particularly horrific effect on African American life. Listed below are some of the major incidents of racial violence profiled on They range from revolts of the enslaved to more recent urban uprisings such as the Rodney King Riot in Los Angeles in 1992. This page does not cover violence affecting a single individual such as lynchings or police shootings. Please look for those incidents elsewhere on the website. We are constantly updating this list but if you think other incidents should be included please send their names and a brief description to We especially invite you to write entries for this page.


Revolts of the Enslaved:

New York City Slave Uprising, 1712

The Stono Rebellion, 1739

New York City Slave Conspiracy, 1741

Gabriel Prosser Revolt, 1800

Igbo Landing Mass Suicide, 1803

Andry’s Rebellion, 1811

Denmark Vesey Conspiracy, 1822

Nat Turner Revolt, 1831

Amistad Mutiny, 1839

Christina (Pennsylvania) Riot, 1851


Civil War and Reconstruction Era Violence

Memphis Riot, 1866

New Orleans Massacre, 1866

Opelousas Massacre, 1868

Chicot County Race War, 1871

Hamburg Massacre, 1876

Wilmington Race Riot, 1898

Pre-1960 Race Riots

Robert Charles Riot (New Orleans), 1900

Atlanta Race Riot, 1906

Springfield, Illinois Race Riot, 1908

Houston Mutiny and Race Riot, 1917

East St. Louis Race Riot, 1917

Charleston (South Carolina) Riot, 1919

Washington, D.C. Riot, 1919

Chicago Race Riot, 1919

Knoxville Race Riot, 1919

Elaine, Arkansas Riot, 1919

Tulsa Race Riot, 1921

Rosewood Massacre, 1923

Harlem Race Riot, 1935

Beaumont Race Riot, 1943

Detroit Race Riot, 1943

Urban Uprisings Since 1960

Watts Rebellion, 1965

Newark Race Riot, 1967

Detroit Race Riot, 1967

Rodney King Riot, 1992


College Campus Violence:

Orangeburg Massacre, 1968

Jackson State Killings, 1970


Related Pages:

Black Lives Matter

Lynchings in the United States Since 1865

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