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Thread: Emmett Till

  1. #1
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    Emmett Till

    So I did a search, and found this young mans name within the "open casket" thread. As he does not have a thread dedicated to him personally, I felt there needed to be one. In fact, I think we could all use it.

    For all of the freedom of speech, tape-recorded phonecalls, hip hop, inner city youths and just plain ignorant racists, EVERY time I hear the n-word (no matter who uses it) I see this young mans face.

    I see Emmetts innocence at 14 years old. I see the absolute carnage, and the open casket funeral his mother wanted. The torture and violence this young man had to endure for no other earthly reason than simply being a young black kid visitng a small town. He entered a store that was owned by two of the most insensitive, idiotic, down-righ stupid shopkeepers that have ever walked the face of the earth. Oh, and their wives too.

    Sadly, I am convinced that the n-word was probably the last words this young man ever heard. Thoughts anyone? When the n-word is used, his tortured face is what I see. If you use the word, or know someone who does, what are your thoughts on it? Is it kinship? Anger? Maybe not think at all?

    From young children who have been taught the word, to music artists raking in millions, it makes no difference to me who uses it, as Emmetts murder will never change no matter how much time has passed, politically correct or not.

    Just a white chic from the south here, looking for some different points of view as all - no judgements.

    ~Mamma

    Emmett Till, Wikipedia

    PS - I don't think I can bring myself to link his death photo on this thread. Can someone help me out? It is intensely graphic. If someone would like to link it, by all means please do so. But I worn you please, it is painful and grotesque in every way . Thank you.
    Goodbye Porpoise Spit!


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    This happened in 1957. I have linked the Look Magazine article to the story they printed at the time. http://http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/till/sfeature/sf_look_confession.html

    There are many points in history (and I consider 50 years ago history) that make us all cringe or feel sick to our stomachs, wondering how life could have been that way. Fortunately, it's history and I would like to believe we learn from history. There's always a road ahead of us to improve and learn, and yes...we have a way to go, but it's better and we continue to learn. On the other hand, some people will never learn. They live in their own little boxes.

    I must say, tho, that with what this young man went through, I doubt the words that were thrown at him were what put him in agony. That's not the hateful part of all of this. It was the actions.......and the feelings of hate from the heart.

    As far as the wives were concerned, I don't see (from the Look article) how they were responsible for this. From what it said, they did what they could to keep it from the men. Based upon this article, the men were the ones responsible for this young man's death and they were the ones who should have paid the price for it.

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    Man this was a sad story... I watched the documentaries and read up on it. Emmet's mom had such strength and courage to have an open casket to show what those redneck animals did to her son.


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    This terrible event took place in Money, Mississippi, near Greenwood, in the Delta. I have friends who owned the plantation across the road from the grocery store where Till whistled at the white woman. Not too many people are still alive who were involved in this murder. And, spectators don't want to discuss it. The jury turned a blind eye and deaf ears to the evidence.

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    From what it said, they did what they could to keep it from the men.
    I'll have to take a few momenst to research this, but from my understanding in the initial "investigation" (psh, yea right) The wife of the store owner is the one who went to her husband in "shock and awe" because a black kid made a remark to her. Did Emmett really whistle at her? Or tell her "Have a nice day"? No one will ever know, I'm sure. But from the history of his case, the wife clearly exaggerated the harrasment she received from Emmett to her husband. By the time the Look magazine confession was printed, they had plenty of time to think about it.

    Gimme some time to look into it ...

    ~Mamma
    Goodbye Porpoise Spit!


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    Mamma.....I read that they exhumed his body for an autopsy. (Both killers are now dead.) I cannot, however, find out what the results of the autopsy revealed. Do you know anything about that?

    That casket photo is shocking. I hope by the end of her life, that mother understood the importance of what she did by allowing that to be seen. Reality doesn't sink in for a lot of people until they "see" it. How much more vivid can it be than that? Wow.
    Last edited by Ruffian; 11-09-2007 at 03:06 PM.

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    [quote=Ruffian;43380]This happened in 1957. I have linked the Look Magazine article to the story they printed at the time. http://http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/till/sfeature/sf_look_confession.html
    /quote]

    [SIZE=4]The murder of EMMETT TILL occurred in 1955[/SIZE],
    not 1957.


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    his mother wrote a book called "death of innocense" it talked about his short life and how smart he was. he was a good boy, his mother's only child. you should get the book there is some shit in it that will make your jaw drop. especially the part about dwight eisenhowere. or how ever you spell his name. mama till mobley(emmet's mother) was no joke. she was not one to play with. what she did to her second husband was off the hook. that is why people should keep their hands to themselves. so get the book already. will ya. lol

  9. #9
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    [quote=KELT;43651]
    Quote Originally Posted by Ruffian View Post
    This happened in 1957. I have linked the Look Magazine article to the story they printed at the time. http://http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/till/sfeature/sf_look_confession.html
    /quote]

    [SIZE=4]The murder of EMMETT TILL occurred in 1955[/SIZE],
    not 1957.
    Sorry...my mistake. Here's a corrected link to the Look article as well:

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/till/

    The direct link isn't working so you'll have to muddle through the website to find it.

  10. #10
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    http://www.emmetttillmurder.com/ here is a link to the open casket photo as well as other info

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    I have seen many documentaries too. It is one of the saddest stories ever.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mamma View Post
    For all of the freedom of speech, tape-recorded phonecalls, hip hop, inner city youths and just plain ignorant racists, EVERY time I hear the n-word (no matter who uses it) I see this young mans face.
    Hi Mamma,

    I grew up in rural East Texas where the N-word was used quite often. I remember hearing it all the time, but the most shocking was when I heard it from an elderly lady whose yard I mowed used it. I couldn't see her in the same way afterwards.

    Being Mexican, I tend to identify myself with people who have been put-down or insulted for not being up to some arbitrary standard or excellence. I've been called just about everything associated with being Mexican (especially now with the debate on illegal immigration). Whether it be because of race, religion, sex, sexual orientation or economic condition or whatever else, words like these demean us all.

    I hate the N-word in any of its forms. Last week I had to discipline a couple of my employees for using the N-word even though they're African-American.

    Thanks for starting this thread on Emmet. His mother is a hero to me. No mother should ever have to bury her child, especially to lose him in the way she lost Emmet.

    I always ask myself, when will all this stop? When will we see each other as just plain human beings who have hopes, dreams and passions just like everybody else?

    As for the pictures, I get angry every time I see them. I remember seeing a documentary some time ago where the film crew was going to interview the lady who accused Emmet of whistling at her. The crew made it up to the driveway where they were stopped by the woman's son who told the film crew to go away.

    She'll have to live with her conscience. If she has one.

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    Sadly in the south mistreatment of blacks was so commonplace and no one seemed to care...This woman's strength in having an open casket to show everyone what they did to her baby was amazing ! I feel so sad for Emmett...no one deserves to be tortured and killed this way...he was just a child...there is still so much injustice in these crimes from the 50's and 60's. God bless him and his family, thankfully he is in a place with no racism and pain now.
    As for the N-word I do not think anyone should use it, white, black or green...it is offensive so it should not be used, however we all know it will continue to be used and we will have to live with it.

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    I happened to stumble upon the photo of Emmitt Till's face by accident while doing a Yahoo! search - I had always tried to avoid it because I heard it was incredibly gruesome. It is, undoubtedly, the most disturbing picture I've ever seen, partly because of the sight of what this kid underwent, and partly because this is the clearest picture I've seen in my life of the power of hate.

    Yes, it's gruesome and it will turn more than a few stomachs. But I honestly think that everyone should take a good look at that photo. If that photo doesn't remove a person's hatred of another race/skin color/religion/whatever, then they're simply not human.


    EDIT: Right after I posted this, I thought, "Why did this bother me more than any pictures from the Holocaust?" (I am not Jewish, nor am I black, for the record.) Maybe it was because most of the pictures from the Holocaust were taken from a distance, and maybe the human mind is just not able to comprehend the level of hatred when it sees stacks of bodies piled on top of each other. Meanwhile, the shot of Till's face in the casket was close-up, and detailed the beating he had taken, so it became (at least in my mind) more immediate, easier to understand.

    I mean no disrespect for anyone who survived the hell of a concentration camp, or families who lost loved ones to these horrible atrocities. I was just surprised by how the image of one person struck me as hard as it did.
    Last edited by dailyvault; 11-13-2007 at 11:21 AM. Reason: Additional thoughts

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    It was said that he whistled because he had a speech inpediment.

    The thing that always struck me about this case was the photo of the two killers with their wives that was taken after their aquittal. All smiles and I believe they had champagne with them. It sickens me, cause it's people like that who give Southerners a bad name.

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    I saw the "American Experience" about this on PBS some time ago. It sickens me to see that photo of the killers and to know that they KNEW that they would get off before they even killed him. RIP Mr. Till. You aren't forgotten.
    peek-a-boo!!

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    Here again, it's sickening to think that a human being has the capacity to do something so vile and heinous to another living, breathing human being. Mamie must have been one strong woman to show the world the true face of racism and hatred


    What fresh hell is this ? ~ Dorothy Parker

    ]

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    Walmart has a doc about this longbutnow... it's about 90 minutes long but you'll be in tears by the end !!!

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    Nobody,and i mean NOBODY,should have had to endure what that poor boy went through. I have very strong negative feelings for anyone that can do that to another human.

  20. #20
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    I remember discussing Emmett Till is U.S. History class in college (I don't think we discussed him in either Elementary School or High School, but maybe that's changed since the Dark Ages when I was in school). He's a very haunting and tragic case. It's amazing how few whites I know (speaking as a white person) in the Northern U.S. have not heard of him. He does show up in African American poetry and literature. Here's a poem published in 1968 by James A. Emanuel, called "Emmett Till":

    I hear a whistling
    Through the water.
    Little Emmett
    Won't be still.
    he keeps floating
    Round the darkness,
    Edging through
    The silent chill.
    Tell me, please,
    That bedtime story
    Of the fairy
    River Boy
    Who swims forever,
    Deep in treasures,
    Necklaced in
    A coral toy.

  21. #21
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    The sad thing about the Emmet Till tragedy is that Carolyn Bryant still lives and breathes, without repenting how she caused another human being to lose his life. Instead, she lives in a realm of denial. And sadly enough, this appalling behavior continues whenever there is a person telling a person of color to not speak of their discrimination because "it is in the past."

    What is even worse (and right in the same league as Holocaust deniers), are there persons who will most vocally tell a Black person (and a person of color) to "get over it" and to "let sleeping dogs lie".

    Precisely, that behavior resulted in a lot of segregation-era murderers going free. And furthermore, it allowed a lot of their decendents (the ones who claim that they "didn't own any slaves") to feel equally as unrepentant to the lives lost in the Jim Crow and Civil Rights era to the present day.

    Fast forwarding that arrogant attitude to the present day, I am not surprised of what happened in Jena, LA. In that neck of the woods, the Klan and the Plantations existed side-by-side supported by an all too willing community code of silence and complicity.
    Last edited by Ceci; 12-28-2007 at 05:54 PM.

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    Federal Bureau of Investigation


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    Quote Originally Posted by Serendipity09 View Post
    WOW 486 pages under Till alone, I'll be reading that for quite some time! Thanks for the link.

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    Filmmaker Working with FBI


    Now tell me this,,,,how can this guy get info that the Police, and FBI cant. Just kinda fishy, is it they wont talk to cops or are they sensationalizing to get a chance of being acredited a movie.
    I think cops just too lazy to do jobs properly in some cases. Read and watch ,,,tell what ya think


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    "Living is not measured in how many breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away!"


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    I recently finished reading Death Of Innocence by Emmett's mother ....the reason they didn't find them guilty of murder was because the jury wasn't convinced it was Emmett's body because the defense kept using the phrase "even a mother wouldn't recognize their son in this shape"
    Mrs Mobley detailed the abuses to his body and also revealed that the state of Mississippi sealed the box they sent his body home to Chicago in and made the funeral director and her family sign that the box would NOT be opened...they had tried to bury him in Mississippi right away.....His mom insisted they open the box and said they wouldn't do anything to her and she would get a hammer and open it herself. They had poured lime on his body to help it break down faster.....his head was cut almost in half from the top ear to ear, he had been shot in the temple and she could see right thru his head, beaten, his tongue was stuck out onto his chin, his left eye was gone and his right was hanging out on his cheek by the optical nerve( she said), there was a chop mark right on the bridge of his nose where his eyebrows were she says it looked like it had been done with a meat clever, his right ear was cut in half with part of it gone, there were only 2 teeth left in his mouth, they had hung a gin fan around his neck with several loops of barbed wire. She saw him naked and said he was not castrated as had been rumored and the rest of his body was not scarred......she insisted on the open casket so the nation could bear witness to what they had done, she asked the funeral director not to do anythng to the body, but he stitched the head together and removed the tongue and eye, which she said was for the best...she said the pictures they showed at the trial were even worse than what she saw when the shipping box was opened..........God Bless this wonderfully courageous woman and her son!!!
    She also got hate mail because the Chicago tv station interrupted I Love Lucy to announce that Emmett's body had been found.........

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    I have always admired his mother.

    That lady had guts.

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    This is one of the most traumatizing stories in human history. Not many suffered like poor little Emmett Till. Bless him for eternity...goodness...

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    The autopsy photos of him are unbelievable. There's a special place in Hell for his killers and those who aided them.
    The most dangerous woman of all is the one who refuses to rely on your sword to save her because she carries her own.

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    every time i revisit the story of emmett till it breaks my heart that we live in a place that would ever condone anything like that~
    it always remins me of omaha where i live & a similar story that haunts me to this day~ i hate walking into that courthouse or on the street corner where it happened~
    here is the link~
    http://www.nebraskastudies.org/0700/...0701_0134.html

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    My father is from Mongomery Alabama......dont get me going....these people disgust me....what they did...in the name of justice....I have seen many many pictures of lynches.even ones were the guys have their girlfriend there watching....in the crowds....My grandfather is from For Deposit Ala and he saw many of these things happen..beating lynchings even the rape of a young black girl..he worked with the man who did t and of course got away with it....My grandfather also took a bad beating after he warned a couple who were traveling on their way to Georgia and there was a mob that were going to follow them out to their car and kill them...and he let them out the back of their store....he has many storys...all sad.....

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    Lisa~ Sounds like your Grandad had a backbone.

    Clone that man!

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    This story is so sad. And I admire his mother SO MUCH for purposely not having a closed casket to show what these people did to him. Bryant admitted he killed him, but because of double jeopardy laws, he got away scott free.

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    That picture is still haunting. Even if I've seen it a million times....

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    Me too. I thank God I did not grow up in a time of such racial hatred. I just don't understand it at all, not even a little bit.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maruz83 View Post
    That picture is still haunting. Even if I've seen it a million times....

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    Quote Originally Posted by stacebabe View Post
    Me too. I thank God I did not grow up in a time of such racial hatred. I just don't understand it at all, not even a little bit.
    Don't let the times fool you, there is still hatred over skin color and even where your from.. Sad sad world.

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    I think, sadly, that may always be, but at least there's no more segregation etc.... I cannot believe we lived at a time where someone of a different color had to ride on a different bus, or got hosed going to school. What kind of humans were these?

    Quote Originally Posted by Maruz83 View Post
    Don't let the times fool you, there is still hatred over skin color and even where your from.. Sad sad world.

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    I totally agree Stacebabe, sadly I do believe that racism will always be a part of our lives....that is why people should never forget what happened to Emmett and the thousands of other victims of the Civil Rights movement....or the victims of the Holocaust and all the other many murders throughout the world based on peoples differences.....if we become complacent these horrors will become even more commonplace than they are.

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    And that is why I admire Emmett Till's mom so much for having an open casket, despite how horribly disfigured he was. It was to show what we did to another human. It's why I wholeheartedly agree in keeping the concentration camps up as memorials -- so we never repeat the mistakes of our past.

    It boggles my mind how humans, not just one, but hundreds of thousands, can think it's perfectly fine to torture or kill someone because of race, ethnic background, or sexuality.

    Quote Originally Posted by RoRo View Post
    I totally agree Stacebabe, sadly I do believe that racism will always be a part of our lives....that is why people should never forget what happened to Emmett and the thousands of other victims of the Civil Rights movement....or the victims of the Holocaust and all the other many murders throughout the world based on peoples differences.....if we become complacent these horrors will become even more commonplace than they are.

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    and ya know when you think about it , it really wasent very long ago ....

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    It really wasn't that long ago, but you still see it in every country. Just now people hide it alot better, then before.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ruffian View Post
    That casket photo is shocking. I hope by the end of her life, that mother understood the importance of what she did by allowing that to be seen. Reality doesn't sink in for a lot of people until they "see" it. How much more vivid can it be than that? Wow.
    Just think about how much that one decision made on our history. How inconsequential of an event would Emmett Till's death have been without that open casket?

  42. #42
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    Did they ever give a reason why?


    "I will be buried in a spring loaded casket filled with confetti, and a future archaeologist will have one awesome day at work."

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    May i suggest you get to netflix and get the dvd on it. Horrible. I am mostly unmoved by this stuff, but seeing the documentary made my stomach turn.

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    Thanks for posting this...I had never heard of him before...I am from the South...Born and reared...I have never been taught to hate...Don't blame it on Southerners...Blame it on stupidity...Ignorance...I am sooo sorry that that happened. People are so damn stupid...It never ceases to amaze me...

  45. #45
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    *** sighs****.............. this is definitely the saddest stories I've ever heard of...that poor young man...God rest his soul.......... I totally commend his mother for standing up for him when he could no longer..... that is one brave, strong woman

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    yes i have the book and i had my friends at work reading the book also. i saw the pictures of his body years ago in the jet magazine. the book had so many twist and turns. like emmitt's dad was executed for raping and killing 2 white women while he was in the military. back then white women would willingly screw black men and if they thought they could be pregnant and have to explain to the white husband how a black baby came out the coochie, they would accuse the black man of rape and would be taken to the barracks by the military police to point out the "culprit". then the black man was taken away and never seen again. dwight eisenhower signed the death warrant for emmitt's dad. emmitt's mom later wrote eisenhower for help in the death of her son but there was no replay. she found out years later what her husband was executed for and that is when she found out about Ike's signing of the death warrant and also after her husband's death they sent her his personal effects included was the ring she later gave emmitt which was later used to identify the poor boy's body. it was still on his finger. a family member who was in the military stated he himself saw the police and white women pick black men out of the barracks and take them away. i don't remember if he saw emmitt's dad or it was other men he saw this happen to.

  47. #47
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    He was such a sweet boy......His mother was amazing and so brave, and standing up for her son was the last thing she could do for him...and she did it well

    RIP Emmett.....sorry...xx
    Inside me, there's a skinny woman fighting to get out....but I can usually shut the bitch up with chocolate

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miho View Post
    Did they ever give a reason why?
    Emmett supposedly whistled at a white woman at the store her husband owned...the husband and his brother were put on trial for the murders and later confessed in a magazine article.........
    Emmett's cousin said he was whistling at a bad checker move that some people who were playing checkers on the porch of the store had made......also Emmett stuttered and his mother had taught him to whistle when he was having trouble saying a word such as bubble gum and what did he buy that day? Bubble gum...she said that haunted her for years that maybe something she taught him to do to help with the stutter had caused his death.

    Here is a really great site with lots of info and links by a man who knew Mrs. Mobley and interviewed her and was her friend for 6 years before her death.....
    http://www.emmetttillmurder.com/

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    Quote Originally Posted by stacebabe View Post
    This story is so sad. And I admire his mother SO MUCH for purposely not having a closed casket to show what these people did to him. Bryant admitted he killed him, but because of double jeopardy laws, he got away scott free.
    he got away because he was white. it had nothing to do with double jeopardy. he confessed years later in a magazine article and he said he would do it again. everyone in town knew he and his accomplice killed that boy and the white people were happy he killed emmitt. the black people were afraid to come forward and when the family member did, he was so shook up that he left town once the trial was over. they were on national televison calling emmitt a nigger.

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by RoRo View Post
    Emmett supposedly whistled at a white woman at the store her husband owned...the husband and his brother were put on trial for the murders and later confessed in a magazine article.........
    Emmett's cousin said he was whistling at a bad checker move that some people who were playing checkers on the porch of the store had made......also Emmett stuttered and his mother had taught him to whistle when he was having trouble saying a word such as bubble gum and what did he buy that day? Bubble gum...she said that haunted her for years that maybe something she taught him to do to help with the stutter had caused his death.

    Here is a really great site with lots of info and links by a man who knew Mrs. Mobley and interviewed her and was her friend for 6 years before her death.....
    http://www.emmetttillmurder.com/
    emmett also had a picture of heddy lamarr in his wallet and she was just his favorite actress.

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