Afro-Americans Must Keep on One Side of Sidewalk
“Afro-Americans Must Keep on One Side of Sidewalk,” Chicago Defender, March 6, 1915 v. 10, n. 10.
AFRO-AMERICANS MUST KEEP ON ONE SIDE OF SIDEWALK
White School Girls Pushed Off Sidewalk in Danville, Va., And Appeal to Police—Blame Is Placed Upon Youngsters of the Race but White Children Are Just As Bad.
Richmond, Va. March 5.—The local officials at Danville, Va., have recently put into operation a new police rule which requires Afro-American children to limit their occupation of the sidewalks to and from school when white children happen to be coming or going in either direction.
From one of the white newspapers published in that city we clip this report:
Complaint has been made to the police department of the eternal habit of Negro school children trying to take the entire sidewalk when going and coming from school. This morning two young white girls appeared in court against a Negro for having shoved them from the sidewalk. Unfortunately they had the wrong Negro boy.
So indignant did the presiding judge become on account of the story … by the young white girls and … unable to inflict punishment on the innocent young boys, he … the chief of police to report … to the mayor. Subsequently, … the mayor issued an order directing the police to arrest and bring …court any Negro child or … who obstructed the sidewalks where white children were passing. He also requested the judge to deal severely with any offenders of this rule brought before him.
This is the first time in the history of Danville that such harsh measures have been resorted to. The colored citizens are becoming alarmed, as such gross injustice and are taking steps to safeguard their rights in the premises.