No Death by Unknown Hands by Minnette Coleman
'Death by Unknown Hands' is how a US coroner would officially record a death by lynch mob.
The 1950s was a watershed period for such atrocities in the Deep South. It was still entirely possible for a colored person to be lynched, for colored houses to be burned down, and for colored workers to lose their jobs, but these were no longer automatic responses to an event which outraged the white community - they were certainly possible, there were even quite probable, but they were no longer guaranteed.
It was therefore a time when the colored community held its breath to see if the justice system could impose itself on the anarchy of the lynch mob.
'No Death By Unknown Hands' is the simple story, told in all the complexity that is its due and based on true events, of how a brave, gentle, concerned and God-fearing man who ministered to the colored community of Atlanta in the 1950s was accused of the rape of a white woman that never actually took place, was tried for his 'crime' and was executed.
And it is the story of a young girl growing up watching in great confusion the way the elders in her community wrestled with the political issues of truth and justice, those elders including her honorable and concerned journalist father and her strong, beautiful and loving mother.
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