The Lynching Belt

“In July, two colored farmers were lynched near Germantown, Kentucky. No motive was assigned for the lynching. The Commercial Appeal, the leading white newspaper of Tennessee, in commenting upon the lynchings, said, ‘Two apparently inoffensive Negroes, good farm hands, real wealth producers, were assassinated.’ No motive was assigned for the lynching. The Commercial Appeal further stated, “As far as anyone knows, they were quiet, ordinary country people.” from the Booker T. Washington Papers, 1912-14, page 341

“Up to the end of October there had been forty-five cases of mob murder, mostly in the Southern States, and in several instances were wanton, the acts of frenzied citizens who neither sought nor cared for an excuse. They were impelled by impulse and lynched without cause. Near Germantown, Ky., two negro farms hands, described as harmless and inoffensive, were strung up without any semblance of motive for the act. This law lawless deed excited bitter comment by the newspapers in what is known as the "lynching belt," and while the perpetrators were condemned, no attempt was made to detect and punish them. This indifference is censurable.” - The Louisville Courier Journal, November 28, 1913, reprinting an item from the Pittsburgh Post


NKY Views has doubts. This may well be an absolutely true story, but the only two sources we can find for it are from Tennessee and Pittsburg. The Maysville Daily Bulletin has no such story, nor do any of the Kentucky papers we can find have the original story. And any lynching got a lot of press, far and wide. The lack of local coverage, and the dearth of national coverage makes this one suspicious.