By Kathy Knotts
The City of Annapolis and Anne Arundel County will memorialize the 1921 Tulsa race riot as Black Wall Street Day, May 30. From noon to 5pm, an event will be held at the People’s Park in Annapolis to acknowledge the 100th anniversary of the Greenwood massacre in Tulsa, Okla.
In the early 1900s, Tulsa’s Greenwood District was known as Black Wall Street, one of the most successful, established, and wealthiest Black business districts in the nation. The massacre, carried out by mobs of white residents on the ground and from private aircraft, destroyed more than 35 square blocks of the district. More than 800 people were admitted to hospitals. As many as 6,000 Black residents were interned for several days while more than three dozen were confirmed dead (26 Black and 13 white).
Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley and Anne Arundel County Executive Steuart Pittman will speak at the event, as well as local community leaders about the importance of community healing and restorative justice. The event will feature several local Black-owned businesses in Annapolis and Anne Arundel County, as well as local artists and musicians.
“The 100th anniversary of the Greenwood massacre is a moment for all of us to recognize the collective trauma caused by our nation’s history of racial violence,” said Pittman. “We must use this moment as a way to uplift the work of community healing and restorative justice, to address past trauma and build a more equitable future.”
“I look forward to working with community leaders and groups to create a path forward to address the local and national history of racial violence and institutional racism,” said Mayor Gavin Buckley. “It is crucial that we show how restorative justice practices, like this event, not only raise awareness to national tragedies like the Tulsa race riot, but that they also create a space to heal.”