Monday, May 13, 2013

Historical executions(public hangings) of Gabriel Prosser and Cadre 15th & Broad st Richmond

Slaves had long believed god to be on there side. Now they prayed only to have their souls set free. Seven blocks away, near 15th and broad the hangmen made sure that all was in working order. In a low spot surrounded by tall pines and undergrowth sat the city gallows. the hanging of the rebellious slaves like all executions was a publlic affair. Hangings were at once a form of entertainment and a potent symbol of the power of state over the individual; for slaves who were encouraged to attend they were bloody lesson of the futility of resistance to white domination. "NOTHING WAS MORE SUCCESSFUL IN INDUCING PASSIVE BEHAVIOR -OR PROVED MORE PSYCHOLOGICALLY DAMAGING TO BLACK MEN AND WOMEN-THAN BEING FORCED TO WATCH FATHERS AND HUSBANDS AND FRIENDS KICKING AT THE END OF A NOOSE". Even such lessons however had their limits in an allegedly civilized society. Soon after sunrise will,mike,nat and isaac marched into a tumbril for their journey to the gallows. Expecting trouble from black jacobins still on the loose, the governor instructed several companies of infantry and horse to form a circle around the gallows to keep off the crowd. The four men -perhaps tied and blind folded -mounted the scaffold the sound of their feet on the boards drowned out by shouts and cat calls from whites and the singing of hymns and the wails of there fellow slaves and friends who were allowed to crowd the space outside the line of military. The trap door swung open the heads of the four men snapped back and they were still... When at all possible the families of the executed retrieved the bodies and carried them country side for burial. All afrikans believed that human spirits lived on after death in another realm(rarely in the sky) that was far from this troubled world..... The last of the seven to go was the man who planned it all standing alone in the back of the tumbril with his hands bound behind him, Gabriel was driven to the town gallows near 15th and broad. a considered crowed gathered but probably his wife was not among them. Because he was hanged in Richmond it was unlikely that Gabriel was able to say goodbye to nanny,an because he was hanged alone, he was denied the small comfort of being executed by the side of one of his comrads. The trap door fell open and Gabriel at long last found sweet freedom. Virginia authorities hoped that would be the end of it. Many slaves believed otherwise black baptist retained enough of the west african worldview to believe that a restless soul who died unnaturally would not pass into the spirit world but instead would find a home in a body of a newborn child.... (Gabriels Rebellion The Virginia Slave Conspiracies) 1800 Richmond .. RB! @Haki_shakur Haki shakur New Afrikan peoples Virginia district August 3rd collective

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