Norfolk Landmark, August 14, 1907


African-Americans -- Racial violence

But Danger of Further Trouble Has Not Yet Passed.


The Search for the Ringleaders of the Mob Which Started the Trouble Saturday Night will be Continued.

Onancock, Va., Aug. 13. -- News of a conference in which two hundred and fifty negroes were participating in the woods near this place tonight created no little excitement among citizens throughout this section, and troops and framers were at once dispatched to the scene. The negroes dispersed in an orderly manner and at midnight all was quiet again.

Eighty soldiers still remain here and no trouble is anticipated. The town Council has granted Dr. Mooney, a colored physician, permission to remain here, it being shown that he was in no way connected with the recent rioting.

Richmond, August 13. -- At Onancock, the scene of the recent rioting, every thing is reported quiet tonight.

Troops ordered to the scene by the Governor yesterday are patrolling the town. The troops will remain on the scene until the trouble has subsided.

The situation is still critical and there is still danger of a further outbreak between the races. Governor Swanson returned to Norfolk from Onancock this afternoon. He reports the situation as quiet and anticipates no further trouble. The rumor that a car load of negroes were coming to the assistance of their fellows did not materialize, probably on account of the presence of soldiers. The negroes are shrinking from the soldiers, but are still in a bad humor and ripe for trouble. A car of white people from Maryland arrived at Onancock this afternoon.

A further search for the ringleader of the mob has failed utterly. The Governor has indicated that the search shall continue until the arrest of the parties indicated have been made.

At a late hour tonight there had been no further outbreak at the scene of the recent troubles. But the situation is still intense with the chances good that the negroes will retaliate upon the whites if the occasion offers. With the presence of the troops, however, there is small chance of any trouble materializing.


"We left Onancock last night at 10 o'clock with every thing quiet, but it would be hard to say what the conditions might have been had not Governor Swanson responded so promptly to the call of the citizens' committee."

So declared Chairman McDonald Lee, of the State Board of Fisheries, to a representative of The Landmark last night, when questioned concerning the recent race riots at Onancock.

Mr. Lee stated that Governor Swanson left Richmond at mid-night Sunday and arrived at Old Point Comfort at 2 o'clock Monday morning, where be awaited the arrival of the Commodore Maury, flagship of the Virginia Oyster Navy.

After arriving at Onancock the citizens' committee urged upon Governor Swanson to call out a small number of soldiers to see that continued order prevailed, and it was upon their request that the Norfolk company was directed to the scene of the riots. According to Mr. Lee, the troops will remain at Onancock until such time as their services shall be dispensed with by the sheriff or mayor.


"False rumors," stated Mr. Lee, "have been circulated about the number of negro families ordered to leave the town."

"Six families were ordered to get out, and five of the six left the town immediately en route for Baltimore. Dr. Moon, one of those directed to quit the place, was allowed to remain on probation."

"Up to the time the Governor delivered the speech, of which you have already heard, there were ugly rumors afloat, but his words seemed to quiet the throngs, and there is now no danger of any further trouble from the negroes.

The Governor's speech seemed to pacify the hot heads, who wanted to clean all the negro families out of the city, and there is now no danger of any such drastic action."

Mr. Lee stated that the Governor remained on the scene of the trouble until he had received word that the troops from Norfolk were en route.

The Maury left Onancock at 10 o'clock Monday night and arrived at the Exposition grounds yesterday morning at 11:30 o'clock, in time for Governor Swanson to participate in the Massachusetts Day exercises.


Sea -- Shellfish - Crabbing : BaysideSea -- Shellfish - Crabbing : Law enforcement

The Flagship Maury Will Leave on Cruise Around Tangier Latter Part of Week.

Chairman W. McDonald Lee and members of the State Board of Fisheries will leave Norfolk this week in the flagship Commodore Maury for Pocomoke and Tangier sounds, to keep a lookout for Maryland crabbers, who are liable to cross the line.

Mr. Lee stated last night that the Commodore Maury would probably leave the latter part of the week and that a vigilant lookout was to be maintained in order that the State laws relative to crabbing would not be infringed upon by the Maryland crabbers.

The regular monthly meeting of the State Board will be held at the Atlantic Hotel at noon on August 20th, and various routine and special matters will come up for consideration at that time.

At present the flagship of the Virginia Oyster Navy is anchored off the Exposition grounds, where Chairman Lee and other members of the Board are spending a few days, after several weeks of strenuous work.

Norfolk Landmark
Norfolk, Virginia
August 14, 1907