Ida B. Wells-Barnett quote: “The government…

Ida B. Wells-Barnett, circa 1893
Ida B. Wells-Barnett, circa 1893


“The government which had made the Negro a citizen found itself unable to protect him. It gave him the right to vote, but denied him the protection which should have maintained that right. Scourged from his home; hunted through the swamps; hung by midnight raiders, and openly murdered in the light of day, the Negro clung to his right of franchise with a heroism which would have wrung admiration from the hearts of savages. He believed that in that small white ballot there was a subtle something which stood for manhood as well as citizenship, and thousands of brave black men went to their graves, exemplifying the one by dying for the other.”

– Ida B. Wells-Barnett

“Ida B. Wells-Barnett quote: ‘The government…” sources:

The Red Record: “Tabulated Statistics and Alleged Causes of Lynching in the United States” by Ida B. Wells-Barnett, published in 1895 – Project Gutenberg / Photograph of Ida taken circa 1893 – Wikimedia Commons