Descendant of Alex Manly talks about modern impact of 1898 Massacre

Posted in Articles, Biography, History, Media Archive, United States, Videos on 2022-02-22 03:38Z by Steven

Descendant of Alex Manly talks about modern impact of 1898 Massacre

WECT News 6
Wilmington, North Carolina

Mara McJilton, Multimedia Journalist

Alex Manly was the owner of The Daily Record newspaper in 1898 when it was burned down by white supremacists

WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) –Alex Manly was the owner of The Daily Record newspaper in 1898 when it was burned down by white supremacists.

Now, 123 years later, descendants of Manly are still trying to piece together what happened on November 10, 1898.

“The real, real granular details, the real truth of it — it’s been an ongoing experience and process,” said Alex Manly’s great-great-grandson Kieran Haile.

Haile has had a vague understanding of the 1898 Massacre since he was a teenager, but it wasn’t until about five years ago when he was nearing his 30′s that he really started to take a deep dive into history and learn more about this horrific day…

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A History of Loss

Posted in Articles, History, Media Archive, Passing, United States on 2015-02-10 21:08Z by Steven

A History of Loss

The Chronicle Review
The Chronicle of Higher Education

Allyson Hobbs, Assistant Professor of History
Stanford University

Alexander L. Manly could have been the first victim of the bloody race riot that exploded in Wilmington, N.C., in early November 1898. Manly, publisher of the Daily Record, North Carolina’s only African-American newspaper, was the target of the rioters after he wrote an inflammatory editorial about white supremacists’ charges that black men were assaulting white women. Manly fired back that the white women who claimed that black men had raped them had, in fact, engaged in consensual sex. His press was burned to the ground. He narrowly escaped to Philadelphia, but upon arrival, discovered that work was hard for a black man to find. Employers summarily rejected his applications for employment as a painter, insisting that no union would accept a black member.

“So I tried being white,” Manly later explained to the journalist Ray Stannard Baker, “that is, I did not reveal the fact that I had coloured blood, and I immediately got work in some of the best shops in Philadelphia. I joined the union and had no trouble at all.”

But Manly soon tired of the charade. Passing only during the work day—”9-to-5 passing,” it was called—meant that he had to leave his house early in the morning and could not return until after nightfall. He feared discovery. “The thing became unbearable,” he lamented. “I preferred to be a Negro and hold up my head rather than to be a sneak.” So he became a janitor and lived openly with his recognizably black wife and children.

Manly could have reaped all of the benefits that accrued to whiteness: economic opportunity and security, political agency, and countless social privileges. Indeed, by some accounts, his light skin had eased his escape from Wilmington, protected him from the racial violence that had engulfed the city, and very likely saved his life. But for Manly, those gains were far outweighed by all that there was to lose…

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