Scarce Events of the Tulsa Disaster, First Edition, 1922

PARRISH, Mary E. Jones. Events of the Tulsa Disaster. [Tulsa, Oklahoma?], [1922?].

8vo (150 x 220 mm). Folding panoramic frontis. and illustrated throughout. Lacking title page as issued. Original red cloth with gilt titles (minor shelf wear, rubbing and soiling to covers, else very good copy).

FIRST EDITION. The first account of the Tulsa race massacre with eyewitness accounts compiled by Mary E. Jones Parrish, a young black teacher and journalist. A survivor of the riots herself, her work is one of the earliest books published by a female African American journalist. In the early 1920s, Tulsa was a booming oil town and was home to Greenwood District, a black neighborhood often called “Negro Wall Street.” On Memorial Day weekend 1921, a shoe shiner named Dick Rowland was arrested and events spiraled out of control, fueled by the sensationalist Tulsa Tribune. Mob violence spread from the courthouse and white rioters invaded Greenwood burning houses, schools, churches, businesses, and the District’s hospital. Eyewitnesses even reported attacks by air, with privately-owned aircraft carrying assailants throwing firebombs and firing rifles. The violence was only quelled when martial law was declared and the Oklahoma National Guard arrived. The human toll was difficult to discern, but the Red Cross estimated as many as 300 people died, the majority of them African American. As of December 2019, a mass grave believed to be linked with the massacre was discovered in Tulsa. The panoramic frontispiece graphically portrays the devastation. Not in Blockson Collection Catalog, Work, or Moorman Library Catalog. OCLC locates 16 copies. Quite scarce.


Bumped corners and edge wear. Some staining and soiling to cover. Even toning to pages. Else very good. Mylar wraps. 

Estimate: $4,000 - $6,000
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