The residents of Lake County, Florida, awoke on the morning of July 16, 1949, to a drama that was hauntingly familiar and yet disturbingly different. Word passed quickly through the area of small towns and rural communities that before dawn on this summer Sunday’s white woman had been attacked and raped by four black men near Groveland. In the past, such crimes had stirred lynch mobs into acts of vengeance, and this occasion proved no exception. However, in this instance, blood-thirsty vigilantes did not succeed in rendering summary punishment, but they partially achieved their objectives through lawful means. Although lynching diminished in influence in the post World War II South, public officials, responding to social and political pressures, accomplished the same goals in a legally-sanctioned fashion.
Lawson, Steven F.
"Groveland: Florida's Little Scottsboro,"
Florida Historical Quarterly: Vol. 65
, Article 3.
Available at: https://stars.library.ucf.edu/fhq/vol65/iss1/3