Tulsa Race Riot

A Report by the Oklahoma Commission to Study the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921 February 28, 2001

 

 

 

 

February 21, 2001

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

COMMISSIONERS:

CHAIRMAN:

Currie Ballard, Coyle

T. D. "Pete" Chruchwell, Tulsa

Dr. Bob Blackburn, Oklahoma City

 

Joel Burns, Tulsa

SPONSORS:

Vivian Clark, Tulsa

Sen. Maxine Horner, Tulsa

Rep. Abe Deutschendorf, Lawton

Rep. Donn Ross, Tulsa

Eddie Faye Gates, Tulsa

 

Jim Lloyd, Tulsa

ADVISORS:

Sen. Robert Milacek, Wauikomis

Dr. John Hope Franklin, Durham NC

Jimmie L. White, Jr., Checotah

Dr. Scott Ellsworth, Portland OR

 

 

February 21, 2001

 

 

 

Honorable Frank Keating

Honorable Susan Savage

Governor of Oklahoma

Mayor of Tulsa

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105

Tulsa, Oklahoma 74119

 

 

Honorable Larry Adair

Members of the City Council

Speaker of the House of Representatives

City of Tulsa

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105

Tulsa, Oklahoma 74119

 

 

Honorable Stratton Taylor President

 

Pro Tempore of the Senate

 

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105

 

Dear Sir or Madam:

Pursuant to House Joint Resolution 1035 (1997), as amended, I have the honor to transmit here with the Final Report of Findings and Recommendations of the 1921 Tulsa Race Riot Commission. The report includes the commission's findings on each specific item assigned it by statute, and it also explains the methods and processes that led to those findings. In addition, the commission has exercised the option, granted it by law, to make recommendations concerning reparations related to the tragedy.

This Commission fully understands that it is neither judge nor jury. We have no binding legal authority to assign culpability, to determine damages, to establish a remedy, or to order either restitution or reparations. However, in our interim report in February, 2000 the majority of Commissioners declared that reparations to the historic Greenwood community in real and tangible form would be good public policy and do much to repair the emotional and physical scars of this terrible incident in our shared past. We listed several recommended courses of action including direct payments to riot survivors and descendants; a scholarship fund available to students affected by the riot; establishment of an economic development enterprise zone in the historic Greenwood district; a memorial for the riot victims.

In the final report issued to day, the majority of Commissioners continue to support these recommendations. While each Commissioner has their own opinion about the type of reparations that they would advocate, the majority has no question about the appropriateness of reparations. The recommendations are not intended to be all inclusive, but rather to give policy makers a sense of the Commission's feelings about reparations and a starting place for the creation of their own ideas.

 

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