TULSA, Okla. (KFOR) – Nearly 100 years after a massacre destroyed hundreds of businesses and homes in Tulsa, community leaders say they are raising money to restore the area to its former glory.
The Greenwood District in Tulsa, Oklahoma was once called “Black Wall Street,” a 35-block radius in the segregated community thriving with hundreds of black-owned businesses.
But, on June 1, 1921, the entire area was burned down as a result of a riot that began after a black man was accused of assaulting a white woman.
White residents attacked the community, killing hundreds of black residents and injuring 800 others.
Despite it being one of the worst instances of racial violence in the United States, the massacre was mostly swept under the rug.
“For decades, Oklahoma schools did not talk about it. In fact, newspapers didn’t even print any information about the Tulsa Race Riot. It was completely ignored. It was one of those horrible events that everyone wanted to just sweep under the rug and ignore,” U.S. Senator James Lankford said.
Even though it’s been nearly 100 years since the attack, leaders say the community never fully recovered.
Now, activists say they are hoping to raise $10 million to restore Black Wall Street.
The Greenwood Chamber of Commerce announced that it has started a GoFundMe page to increase minority-owned businesses, enhance public spaces, and improve the historic district.
Organizers say they will have a breakdown of the plans and timeline in a few weeks.