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CAIR Applauds Historic Maryland Marker to Victims of Lynching as ‘Stone Laid on the Long Road to Truth, Reconciliation, Healing’

(BALTIMORE, MD, 9/12/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today applauded the unveiling of a historic marker in Annapolis, Md., dedicated to victims of lynching and racial terror in the state as “another stone laid in the long road to truth, reconciliation and healing” for America’s black communities. 

SEE: “Injustices discussed in Annapolis as first historical lynching marker in Maryland unveiled”

Maryland Erects the First of Many Lynching Memorials

The marker, the first of its kind in Maryland, commemorates at least five African-American men — Henry Davis, John Sims, George Briscoe, Wright Smith and King Johnson — killed in lynchings across Anne Arundel County.

The campaign was spearheaded by the Connecting the Dots Coalition led by Monica Lindsey, in partnership with the Equal Justice Initiative. It is part of a larger ongoing project sponsored by the Equal Justice Initiative, representatives of which participated in the ceremony. CAIR is a member and supporter of the Connecting the Dots coalition. 

“Lynching was terrorism,” said Lindsey. “A vicious tool of racial control that continues to impact all of us today. By installing this marker, we are slowly changing the landscape to reflect truth.”

“Society reflects what it values through the moments, tragedies and milestones it memorializes,” said CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry. “For generations, some of the worst perpetrators of oppression and terror have been celebrated in our history books and culture, while their victims have been silenced and made invisible. This marker proves that the tide is finally turning. Truth and justice are coming to light.”

In a ceremony held at Whitmore Park, elected officials including Anne Arundel County Executive Steuart Pittman, Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley and other local and state leaders attended and spoke to help mark the occasion.

Among the participants was State Delegate Joseline Peña-Melnyk, the lead sponsor of House Bill 307, which created the nation’s first statewide truth commission tasked with investigating the history and legacy of racial terror lynchings in Maryland. 

CAIR joined partner organizations to testify in support of the bill, and welcomed the measure passing unanimously in the Maryland General Assembly. 

SEE: CAIR Applauds Historic New Maryland Law Authorizing Statewide Commission to Investigate History of Racial Lynchings

CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

On November 9, CAIR will hold its 25th anniversary gala in Washington, D.C.

SEE: CAIR’S 25th Annual Gala  


CONTACT: CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry,, 410-971-6062

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