Emmett Till Monument Established
President Joe Biden signed a proclamation yesterday designating multiple locations as national monuments honoring the life and death of Emmett Till, and his mother, on what would have been Till's 82nd birthday.
Till, a Black 14-year-old, was kidnapped, tortured, and killed in Mississippi after he allegedly whistled at a white woman, who then claimed he grabbed and sexually harassed her at a convenience store in 1955. (In 2017, it was revealed the woman had admitted to fabricating her testimony.) Two suspects disposed of Till's body in a river and were tried and acquitted by an all-white jury, despite later admitting to the murder in a magazine article. Till's mother, Mamie Till-Mobley, held an open-casket funeral prompting images of Till's mutilated body to be circulated, catalyzing the civil rights movement.
The Emmett Till and Mamie Till-Mobley National Monument sites will include the Roberts Temple Church of God in Christ in Chicago, where Till’s funeral was held; the Tallahatchie County Courthouse in Mississippi, where the suspects were acquitted; and a Tallahatchie River bank in Mississippi, where his body was found.