A commission in Maryland has received a $300,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Justice to research and address unsolved lynchings of Black people in the state.
The funds were given to the Maryland Lynching Truth and Reconciliation Commission through the DOJ's Emmett Till Cold Case Investigations Program, Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh said Wednesday in a news release.
The commission was created last year by the State Assembly to document cases of racially motivated lynchings and hold public hearings about them. At least 43 Black people were lynched by white mobs throughout the 19th and 20th century in Maryland, according to the statement, and no person has ever been tried or convicted for their participation.
“The grant will allow the Commission to acknowledge and address the brutality of lynchings that occurred in our own backyards,” Frosh said. “Lynchings were witnessed, tolerated and, too often, encouraged by leaders in our state. It is our obligation to do the difficult work to expose these harsh truths and address the harms to families, communities, and our state.”
The commission may also research racially motivated lynchings that have not been documented, and make recommendations for “restorative justice and racial healing," the statement said.