Tulsa, Oklahoma – Today, the President of United States Joe Biden was in the city of Tulsa in the state of Oklahoma recognizing and remembering a piece of history that had been denied and nearly forgotten for far too long. Biden is honoring the victims and survivors of the Tulsa Race Massacre, which occurred 100 years ago on May 31st and June 1st in 1921. A time that white supremacists murdered countless of black Americans and bombed their businesses.
President Biden visited and spoke at the Greenwood Cultural Center to commemorate 100 years since the Tulsa Race Massacre.
Many gathered, including the three known survivors of the Tulsa Race Massacre at the Greenwood Cultural Center ahead of President Biden’s arrival.
Vice President Kamala Harris shared photos on social media of her meeting with Tulsa Race Massacre survivors.
The Greenwood neighborhood of Tulsa—Black Wall Street—was a thriving business district. 100 years ago, a white supremacist mob killed hundreds of Black residents. Black homes, businesses, and churches were burned down. pic.twitter.com/CgfGtll7qM— Vice President Kamala Harris (@VP) June 1, 2021
“The Greenwood neighborhood of Tulsa—Black Wall Street—was a thriving business district. 100 years ago, a white supremacist mob killed hundreds of Black residents. Black homes, businesses, and churches were burned down,” Harris said in the tweet. “I was honored to meet two survivors of the Tulsa Race Massacre, Mother Viola Fletcher and Mr. Hughes Van Ellis. They are resilient and resolute, and today, we recommit to rooting out systemic racism.”
Black Wall Street was a thriving community in Tulsa’s Greenwood District in the early 20th century. Business owners, lawyers and more helped build the area into one of the most prominent neighborhoods in Tulsa.
Then, during an 18-hour period on May 31, 1921, spanning into June 1, 1921, the thriving community was disintegrated by hate. The atrocity is a dark story that many in the U.S., even much of Oklahoma, did not know about until recently.
Biden issued a proclamation Monday, calling on Americans to commemorate the tremendous loss of life and property that took place in 1921 and to celebrate the bravery and resilience of those who survived.
100 years ago, the thriving Black community of Greenwood in Tulsa, Oklahoma was ruthlessly attacked by a white supremacist mob—as many as 300 Black Americans were killed and 10,000 were left homeless. Today, I’m visiting the Greenwood Cultural Center and meeting with survivors.— President Biden (@POTUS) June 1, 2021
Biden also said we need to commit to eradicate systemic racism and help rebuild communities and lives that have been destroyed by it.